Electrophysiological testing and nonsustained ventricular tachycardia. Use and limitations in patients with coronary artery disease and impaired ventricular function.
Electrophysiological testing was performed in 100 consecutive patients with spontaneous asymptomatic nonsustained ventricular tachycardia, chronic coronary artery disease, and ejection fraction of less than 40%. Fifty-seven patients without inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias were discharged on no antiarrhythmic therapy. Sustained monomorphic ventricular tachycardia was induced in 37 patients, and polymorphic ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation was induced in six patients. Of the 43 patients with inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias, three had spontaneous cardiac arrest during serial drug testing and were excluded from further analysis. Twenty patients were discharged on drug therapy, resulting in suppression of inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias. The remaining 20 patients with persistently inducible sustained arrhythmias were discharged on drug therapy, resulting in maximal rate slowing of the induced tachycardia. During a mean follow-up of 16.7 months, there were 10 recurrent cardiac arrests or sudden deaths. The 1- and 2-year actuarial incidence of these events was 2% and 6%, respectively, in patients without inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias; 0% and 11%, respectively, in patients in whom inducible arrhythmias were suppressed; and 34% and 50%, respectively, in patients with persistently inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias. Multivariate Cox analysis identified only the persistence of inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias as a significant independent predictor of sudden death or recurrent sustained arrhythmias (p less than 0.001; relative risk, 3.5; 95% confidence intervals, 2.1-4.9). In this population, therapeutic intervention to prevent sudden death is unnecessary in patients without inducible sustained ventricular arrhythmias.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
- Copyright © 1990 by American Heart Association