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Wednesday, 2 September 2009

New therapy to prevent heart failure

A new study has found that cardiac resynchronization device combined with the defibrillator (CRT-D) can significantly reduce death risk and heart failure in cardiac patients.

The researchers found that patients who had a cardiac resynchronization had a 34 percent reduction in their risk of death or heart failure.

The overall benefit observed from resynchronization therapy was driven by a 41 percent reduction in heart failure.

Women who received CRT-D had an "astonishing" 63 percent reduction in their risk of heart failure.

A 2002 study led by Dr Arthur Moss, professor of Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Centre, and the MADIT (Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trial) research group showed that an implanted defibrillator, or ICD, reduced the risk of death by 31 percent in cardiac patients.

However, other studies showed that although ICDs are effective at preventing sudden death, the patients were subsequently at increased risk for heart failure.

Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) is currently approved for treatment only for patients with symptoms of severe heart

In the current MADIT-CRT trial, Moss sought to determine if preventive CRT-D therapy, the combination of an ICD with CRT, could reduce the risk of mortality and heart failure in patients with mild cardiac disease.

"The findings from MADIT-CRT show that CRT-D effectively reduces the risk of heart failure," the New England Medical Journal quoted Moss as saying.

"There is a very large population of patients with heart disease whom we believe will benefit from CRT-D therapy," he added.

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