Despite limited scientific evidence for the effectiveness of invasive treatment for intermittent claudication (IC), revascularisation procedures for IC are increasingly often performed in Sweden. This randomised controlled trial compares the outcome after 2 years of primary invasive (INV) versus primary non-invasive (NON) treatment strategies in unselected IC patients.
Based on arterial duplex and clinical examination, IC patients were randomised to INV (endovascular and/or surgical, n = 100) or NON (n = 101). NON patients could request invasive treatment if they deteriorated during follow-up. Primary outcome was maximal walking performance (MWP) on graded treadmill test at 2 years and secondary outcomes included health-related quality of life (HRQL), assessed with Short Form (36) Health Survey (SF-36).
MWP was not significantly (p = 0.104) improved in the INV versus the NON group. Two SF-36 physical subscales, Bodily Pain (p