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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2001 Nov 15;38(6):1718-24.

Life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias due to transient or correctable causes: high risk for death in follow-up.

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  • 1Cardiology Division, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. dgwyse@ucalgary.ca

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

This study evaluated the prognosis of patients resuscitated from ventricular tachycardia (VT) or ventricular fibrillation (VF) with a transient or correctable cause suspected as the cause of the VT/VF.

BACKGROUND:

Patients resuscitated from VT/VF in whom a transient or correctable cause has been identified are thought to be at low risk for recurrence and often receive no primary treatment for their arrhythmias.

METHODS:

In the Antiarrhythmics Versus Implantable Defibrillators (AVID) trial, patients with a potentially transient or correctable cause of VT/VF were not eligible for randomization. The mortality of these patients was compared with the mortality of patients with a known high risk of recurrence of VT/VF in the AVID registry.

RESULTS:

Compared with patients having high risk VT/VF, those with a transient or correctable cause for their presenting VT/VF were younger and had a higher left ventricular ejection fraction. These patients were more often treated with revascularization as the primary therapy, more commonly received a beta-blocker, less often required therapy for congestive heart failure and less commonly received either an antiarrhythmic drug or an implantable cardioverter defibrillator. Nevertheless, subsequent mortality of patients with a transient or correctable cause of VT/VF was no different or perhaps even worse than that of the primary VT/VF population.

CONCLUSIONS:

Patients identified with a transient or correctable cause for their VT/VF remain at high risk for death. Further research is needed to define truly reversible causes of VT/VF. Meanwhile, these patients may require more aggressive evaluation, treatment and follow-up than is currently practiced.

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PMID:
11704386
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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