Implantable defibrillator therapy and mortality in patients with non-ischaemic dilated cardiomyopathy: An updated meta-analysis and effect on Dutch clinical practice by the Task Force of the Dutch Society of Cardiology

D A Theuns*, T E Verstraelen, A C J van der Lingen, P P Delnoy, C P Allaart, L van Erven, A H Maass, K Vernooy, A A M Wilde, E Boersma, J G Meeder

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

1 Citation (Web of Science)


BACKGROUND: Primary prophylactic implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) in patients with non-ischaemic cardiomyopathy (NICMP) remains controversial. This study sought to assess the benefit of ICD therapy with or without cardiac resynchronisation therapy (CRT) in patients with NICMP. In addition, data were compared with real-world clinical data to perform a risk/benefit analysis.

METHODS: Relevant randomised clinical trials (RCTs) published in meta-analyses since DANISH, and in PubMed, EMBASE and Cochrane databases from 2016 to 2020 were identified. The benefit of ICD therapy stratified by CRT use was assessed using random effects meta-analysis techniques.

RESULTS: Six RCTs were included in the meta-analysis. Among patients without CRT, ICD use was associated with a 24% reduction in mortality (hazard ratio [HR]: 0.76; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.62-0.93; P = 0.008). In contrast, among patients with CRT, a CRT-defibrillator was not associated with reduced mortality (HR: 0.74, 95% CI 0.47-1.16; P = 0.19). For ICD therapy without CRT, absolute risk reduction at 3‑years follow-up was 3.7% yielding a number needed to treat of 27.

CONCLUSION: ICD use significantly improved survival among patients with NICMP who are not eligible for CRT. Considering CRT, the addition of defibrillator therapy was not significantly associated with mortality benefit compared with CRT pacemaker.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-99
Number of pages11
JournalNetherlands Heart Journal
Issue number3
Early online date6 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

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