Extended detection time to reduce shocks is safe in secondary prevention patients: The secondary prevention substudy of PainFree SST.

Research paper by Laurence D LD Sterns, Mathias M Meine, Takashi T Kurita, Albert A Meijer, Angelo A Auricchio, Kenji K Ando, Charles T CT Leng, Ken K Okumura, John L JL Sapp, Mark L ML Brown, Daniel R DR Lexcen, Bart B Gerritse, Edward J EJ Schloss

Indexed on: 19 Mar '16Published on: 19 Mar '16Published in: Heart Rhythm


Prolonged ventricular fibrillation (VF) detection has been shown to reduce implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) therapies and improve prognosis in primary prevention ICD patients. Data in secondary prevention patients are limited.The PainFree SST secondary prevention study is the largest trial of secondary prevention patients randomized between standard and prolonged detection to assess the safety of this strategy in these patients.A total of 705 secondary prevention patients implanted with an ICD in the PainFree SST trial were enrolled in this substudy; 353 patients were randomized to VF detection of 18/24 intervals and 352 patients to 30/40. All other VF parameters were standardized by protocol.The 1-year arrhythmic syncope-free rates in the standard and prolonged groups were 97.7% vs 96.9%, respectively, (P = .0034 for noninferiority). Freedom from all-cause syncope was 96% in both arms (P = .0013 for noninferiority). There was no difference in the time to first appropriate or inappropriate VF therapy. However, the rates of treated VF episodes were lower in the prolonged arm (1.48 per patient per year vs 0.44 per patient per year, P = .0001). A trend toward lower mortality in the prolonged group was not statistically different (5.6% 1 year, 12% 2 years vs 3.8% 1 year, 7.7% 2 years, adjusted hazard ratio = 0.60, P = .061).This large prospective randomized study shows that prolonged detection can safely be programmed in secondary prevention ICD patients with new or existing devices. This programming strategy decreases the rate of treated events and is not associated with an increased risk of syncope or mortality.

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