• SOURCE: Journal of the American Medical Association

Implantable Defibrillators Underused Among Older Patients After Heart Attack

ID

387115

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VO: EACH YEAR MORE THAN 350 THOUSAND PEOPLE DIE FROM SUDDEN CARDIAC DEATH. PLACEMENT OF AN “IMPLANTABLE CARDIOVERTER-DEFIBRILLATOR” OR I-C-D CAN PREVENT SUDDEN CARDIAC DEATH IN PATIENTS WHO HAVE WEAKENED HEART FUNCTION, INCLUDING THOSE WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED A PREVIOUS HEART ATTACK. A NEW STUDY EXAMINED OLDER PATIENTS WHO HAD WEAKENED HEART FUNCTION AFTER A HEART ATTACK AND WHETHER OR NOT THEY UNDERWENT PLACEMENT OF THESE DEFIBRILLATORS AND WHAT PORTION OF THE PATIENTS WERE STILL ALIVE 2 YEARS LATER. “Age by itself should not be the reason we why we don’t implant a defibrillator.” VO: DR. TRACY WANG (Wong) FROM DUKE UNIVERSITY AND CO-AUTHORS EXAMINED CLINICAL INFORMATION FROM MORE THAN 10 THOUSAND MEDICARE BENEFICIARIES WHO HAD HAD A HEART ATTACK FROM 2007 TO 2010. THESE PATIENTS WERE TREATED AT MORE THAN 4 HUNDRED HOSPITALS ACROSS THE U-S. THE STUDY APPEARS IN JAMA, JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION. “8 percent of these patients who might have been eligible for a defibrillator actually got the defibrillator. Patients two years later were surviving longer with a defibrillator. The patients who are 80 years or older we found an association with better survival when a defibrillator was implanted.” CATHERINE DOLF, THE JAMA REPORT.
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