Effect of Baseline Antiarrhythmic Drug on Outcomes With Ablation in Ischemic Ventricular Tachycardia: A VANISH Substudy (Ventricular Tachycardia Ablation Versus Escalated Antiarrhythmic Drug Therapy in Ischemic Heart Disease)

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The VANISH trial (Ventricular Tachycardia Ablation Versus Escalated Antiarrhythmic Drug Therapy in Ischemic Heart Disease) compared the effectiveness of escalated antiarrhythmic drug therapy to catheter ablation in patients with prior myocardial infarction, an implanted defibrillator, and ventricular tachycardia (VT). The effectiveness of these interventions in patients on sotalol versus amiodarone was compared.

Methods and Results:

Analysis was conducted based on whether patients had recurrent VT, despite amiodarone (amio-refractory) or nonamiodarone drugs (sotalol-refractory). Outcomes included death, VT storm, appropriate implantable cardioverter defibrillator shock, and any ventricular arrhythmia. At baseline, 169 (65.2%) were amio-refractory, and 90 (34.7%) were sotalol-refractory (1 patient on procainamide rather than sotalol). Amio-refractory patients had more renal insufficiency (23.7% versus 10%; P=0.0008), worse New York Heart Association class (82.3% II/III versus 65.5%; P=0.0003), and lower ejection fraction (29±9.7% versus 35.2±11%; P<0.0001). Within the amio-refractory group, ablation resulted in reduction of any ventricular arrhythmia compared with escalated drug therapy (hazard ratio, 0.53; 95% confidence interval, 0.31–0.9), P=0.020). Sotalol-refractory patients had trends toward higher mortality and VT storm with ablation, with no effect on implantable cardioverter defibrillator shocks. Within the escalated drug therapy arm, amio-refractory patients had a higher rate of the composite outcome (hazard ratio, 1.94; 95% confidence interval, 1.14–3.29; P=0.0144) and a trend to higher mortality (hazard ratio, 2.40; 95% confidence interval, 0.93–6.22; P=0.07), whereas mortality was not different between amio- and sotalol-refractory patients within the ablation treatment group.


Patients with amio-refractory VT have a higher rate of ventricular arrhythmia and mortality than those with sotalol-refractory VT and derive greater benefit of catheter ablation than for patients with sotalol-refractory VT who are switched to amiodarone.


URL: https://clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT00905853.

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