The purpose of this retrospective study was to determine the results of coronary artery surgery in the elderly patients and to compare the outcome with a younger group. Two hundred thirteen patients aged 70 years and older who underwent on-pump coronary artery surgery were retrospectively studied and data were compared with those of 524 patients aged 50-69. The groups were similar with respect to preoperative characteristics except for sex distribution and the incidences of peripheral vascular disease and prior cerebrovascular accident. The use of internal mammarian artery grafts was significantly lower in the elderly patients (80.3% versus 91.6%, p < 0.001). The 30-day mortality for the elderly group was 4.7% while that of younger group was 2.3%. The elderly patients had a significantly higher incidence of postoperative low cardiac output, pulmonary complications and acute renal failure. The elderly group also had also significantly longer intensive care unit length of stay (1.9 versus 1.7 days, p=0.006) and postoperative length of stay (10.1 versus 7.4 days, p < 0.001). Although mortality and complication rates are higher, coronary artery surgery can be performed with acceptable risk in the elderly patients. Old age alone should not be a deterrent factor for surgical revascularization in coronary artery disease.