Sex Differences in Device Therapies for Ventricular Arrhythmias or Death in the Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trial With Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy (MADIT-CRT) Trial

Christine M Tompkins, Valentina Kutyifa, Aysha Arshad, Scott McNitt, Bronislava Polonsky, Paul J Wang, Arthur J Moss, Wojciech Zareba
Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology 2015, 26 (8): 862-871

INTRODUCTION: Studies suggest that women with ischemic heart disease are less likely to experience appropriate ICD therapies for ventricular arrhythmias (VT/VF). We evaluated the influence of sex on arrhythmic events or death in subjects enrolled in MADIT-CRT.

METHODS AND RESULTS: Arrhythmic event rates, defined as VT/VF treated with defibrillator therapy or all-cause death, were determined among 1,790 subjects enrolled in MADIT-CRT with documented 3-year follow-up. Predictors of VT/VF/death were identified using multivariate analysis. Ninety-one (21%) women and 466 (35%) men experienced VT/VF/death over the follow-up period. The overall probability of VT/VF/death was significantly lower in women versus men (HR 0.62; P < 0.001). The probability of VT/VF/death was the lowest in women with ischemic heart disease (HR 0.51; P = 0.003). In ICD subjects, the 3-year risk of VT/VF was lower in ischemic women versus men (P = 0.021), and in nonischemic women versus men (P = 0.049). The probability of VT/VF/death was significantly lower in women (HR 0.52; P = 0.007) and men (HR 0.74; P = 0.018) with LBBB who received CRT-D. Appropriate shock therapy strongly correlated with increased risk of death during postshock follow-up in women (HR 5.18; P = 0.001) and men (HR 1.63; P = 0.033); interaction P value of 0.034.

CONCLUSION: In this substudy of MADIT-CRT, sex, etiology of heart disease and type of device implanted significantly influenced subsequent risk for VT/VF or death. Women with ischemic heart disease and women with LBBB who received CRT-D had the lowest incidence of VT/VF or death when compared to men. Appropriate shock therapy was a strong predictor of death, particularly in women.

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