Tom Lane wrote:
> Compared to what it currently takes to check the same tuple (a separate
> index entry fetch and traversal to the heap page), this is already an
> enormous performance improvement.

Though keep in mind that we kill index tuples as soon as they're deemed
to be dead. Nevertheless, I'm not very worried about the cost of
following the chain either. But that's something we can quite easily
measure if we want to.

  Heikki Linnakangas

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TIP 9: In versions below 8.0, the planner will ignore your desire to
       choose an index scan if your joining column's datatypes do not

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