The ICD Cannot Impact Non-Arrhythmic Mortality. Or Can It?
The implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) has been established as the gold standard in terms of reducing sudden death resulting from lethal ventricular tachyarrhythmias [1, 2]. Many large series have shown that the rate of sudden death in patients with a history of such arrhythmias has been reduced to approximately 1% per year, well below the 20%–25% incidence of sudden death observed in major studies of patients treated with antiarrhythmic drugs [3–6]. Nevertheless, there continues to be considerable debate on whether this protection against sudden death translates to meaningful prolongation of life. Or, is sudden arrhythmic death from ventricular tachycardia or fibrillation simply a manifestation of advanced cardiomyopathy from which the patient succumbs shortly after, even if temporarily saved by the ICD?
KeywordsSudden Death Ventricular Tachyarrhythmia Sustained Ventricular Tachycardia Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator Therapy Arrhythmic Death
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