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J Am Coll Cardiol. 1992 Jun;19(7):1542-9.

Deleterious effects of long-term single-chamber ventricular pacing in patients with sick sinus syndrome: the hidden benefits of dual-chamber pacing.

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  • 1Pacemaker Center, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, New Jersey 07112.


Nine hundred fifty patients who received three modes of primary pacemaker systems (581 dual-chamber universal [DDD], 84 atrioventricular-sequential ventricular-inhibited [DVI] and 285 ventricular-inhibited [VVI]) over 12 years were studied retrospectively to determine the effect of pacing mode on patient longevity and the subsequent development of chronic atrial fibrillation or flutter. All patients were followed up continuously for 7 to 8 years. Patients were classified according to indication for permanent pacing (sick sinus syndrome or other indication), age at pacemaker implantation (less than or equal to 70 or greater than 70 years) and history of atrial tachyarrhythmia. Fourteen percent of patients developed atrial fibrillation at some time during the study period. Of those, 4% had a DDD pacemaker, 8% had a DVI pacemaker and 19% had a VVI pacemaker. At 7 years, atrial fibrillation was significantly more frequent in the VVI group than in the DDD and DVI groups. In patients with sick sinus syndrome, the incidence rate was even higher in the VVI group but approximately the same in the DDD and DVI groups. Patients in the VVI and DVI groups who had had previous atrial tachyarrhythmia had a significantly higher incidence of atrial fibrillation at 7 years than did those in the DDD group. During the entire period there were 130 deaths in the study group, including 22% of patients with a DDD pacemaker, 38% of those with a DVI pacemaker and 50% of those with a VVI pacemaker. Patient survival at 7 years was lower in the VVI group than in the DDD or DVI groups.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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