OBJECTIVES: We sought to assess the effect of baseline ejection fraction on survival difference between patients with life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias who were treated with an antiarrhythmic drug (AAD) or implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). BACKGROUND: The Antiarrhythmics Versus Implantable Defibrillators (AVID) study demonstrated improved survival in patients with ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia with a left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≤0.40 or hemodynamic compromise. METHODS: Survival differences between AAD-treated and ICD-treated patients entered into the AVID study (patients presenting with sustained ventricular arrhythmia associated with an LVEF ≤0.40 or hemodynamic compromise) were compared at different levels of ejection fraction. RESULTS: In patients with an LVEF ≥0.35, there was no difference in survival between AAD-treated and ICD-treated patients. A test for interaction was not significant, but had low power to detect an interaction. For patients with an LVEF 0.20 to 0.34, there was a significantly improved survival with ICD as compared with AAD therapy. In the smaller subgroup with an LVEF <0.20, the same magnitude of survival difference was seen as that in the 0.20 to 0.34 LVEF subgroup, but the difference did not reach statistical significance. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that patients with relatively well-preserved LVEF (≥0.35) may not have better survival when treated with the ICD as compared with AADs. At a lower LVEF, the ICD appears to offer improved survival as compared with AADs. Prospective studies with larger patient numbers are needed to assess the effect of relatively well-preserved ejection fraction (≥0.35) on the relative treatment effect of AADs and the ICDs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine