Age over 70 years and critical stenosis of the left main coronary artery trunk are two situations in which the use of the internal mammary artery has been questioned. Because the coexistence of these two conditions is increasingly seen, we reviewed our experience with 53 patients 70 years of age or older that underwent myocardial revascularization for left main disease. In 17 patients, the left anterior descending coronary artery was grafted with the left internal mammary artery whereas the 36 remaining patients were exclusively revascularized by means of saphenous vein conduits. There was no significant difference in postoperative mortality or morbidity between the two patient groups. We conclude that elderly patients with left main disease should be offered the benefits of a mammary artery graft provided they are hemodynamically stable. © Springer-Verlag 1992.