Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Common test used on heart patients who need defibrillator implants unnecessary: Study

Date:
May 8, 2014
Source:
McMaster University
Summary:
A commonly performed test during certain types of heart surgery is not helpful and possibly harmful. The testing procedure, known as defibrillator testing (DT), is commonly used on people who require implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) to prevent sudden cardiac death. It involves putting the patient into cardiac arrest to determine if the defibrillator can first recognize, then successfully shock the patient back into a normal heart rhythm. It requires the use of general anesthesia and is associated with uncommon but potentially life-threatening complications.

New research from McMaster University suggests that a commonly performed test during certain types of heart surgery is not helpful and possibly harmful.

The testing procedure, known as defibrillator testing (DT), is commonly used on people who require implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) to prevent sudden cardiac death. It involves putting the patient into cardiac arrest to determine if the defibrillator can first recognize, then successfully shock the patient back into a normal heart rhythm. It requires the use of general anesthesia and is associated with uncommon but potentially life-threatening complications.

“As with many things in medicine, technology evolves and our knowledge grows and we have presented good evidence that the DT, which has been in use for nearly 30 years, is no longer necessary,” says lead author Jeff Healey, associate professor of medicine, in the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University.

“Without the testing we can save a significant amount of time, money and more importantly, avoid potentially serious complications in patients who are receiving an ICD,” he says

Similar to a pacemaker, an ICD is a small battery-powered electrical impulse generator meant as a permanent safeguard against sudden arrhythmias. Each year, about 300,000 worldwide receive an ICD. Of these, approximately 70 per cent undergo the routine defibrillation testing that often leads to potential complications including possible harm from ICD shocks, says Healey.

“Over the last 10 years, there has been an important shift in practice around the world towards ICD implantation without the test. However, until now, there has been no scientific evidence to support this change in practice. Our study now provides clear and robust evidence to guide practice.”

To test the procedure, Healey initiated a randomized trial, called the “Shockless IMPLant Evaluation (SIMPLE)” study. It is the largest randomized clinical trial of ICD recipients to date, involving a cohort of 2,500 patients worldwide.

The trial compared standard DT in a patient to those who do not have the testing performed and revealed that those who received ICDs without DT did as well as those who underwent the standard testing.

Healey will present the findings at a late-breaking clinical trial session at Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) this Thursday in San Francisco.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by McMaster University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

McMaster University. "Common test used on heart patients who need defibrillator implants unnecessary: Study." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140508172051.htm>.
McMaster University. (2014, May 8). Common test used on heart patients who need defibrillator implants unnecessary: Study. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140508172051.htm
McMaster University. "Common test used on heart patients who need defibrillator implants unnecessary: Study." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140508172051.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins