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Eur Heart J. 2014 Jan;35(2):116-22. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/eht453. Epub 2013 Nov 19.

Incidence of sudden cardiac death after ventricular fibrillation complicating acute myocardial infarction: a 5-year cause-of-death analysis of the FAST-MI 2005 registry.

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  • 1Cardiology Department, European Georges Pompidou Hospital, 20, rue Leblanc, 75015 Paris, France.



Limited data are available on long-term prognosis or causes-of-death analysis among survivors of acute myocardial infarction (MI) according to whether or not they developed ventricular fibrillation (VF) during the acute stage of MI.


Among 3670 MI patients hospitalized in France in 2005 and enrolled in this prospective follow-up cohort study, we assessed in-hospital mortality and 5-year cause of death among those who survived to hospital discharge, according to whether they developed VF (116 cases) or not, during the acute stage. 94.5% of patients had complete follow-up at 5 years. In-hospital mortality was significantly higher among VF patients (adjusted OR 7.38, 95% CI 4.27-12.75, P < 0.001). Among 3463 survivors at hospital discharge, 1024 died during a mean follow-up of 52 ± 2 months. The overall survival rate at 5 years was 74.4% (95% CI 72.8-76.0). In Cox multivariate analysis, occurrence of VF during the acute phase of MI was not associated with an increased mortality at 5 years (HR 0.78, 95% CI 0.38-1.58, P = 0.21). The distribution of causes of death at 5 years did not statistically differ according to the presence or absence of VF, especially for sudden cardiac death (13.1% in VF group vs.12.9% in non-VF group), despite a very low rate of implantation of cardioverter defibrillator in both groups (Overall rate 1.2%).


Patients developing VF in the setting of acute MI are at higher risk of in-hospital mortality. However, VF is not associated with a higher long-term all-cause or sudden cardiac death mortality.


Acute coronary syndrome; Implantable cardioverter defibrillator; Prognosis; Sudden death; Ventricular fibrillation

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