Heart failure (HF) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) both carry significant risk for sudden cardiac death, hospitalization, and mortality; when combined, however, they markedly increase the risk of morbidity and mortality. Device therapies such as implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) and cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) are treatments proven to have significant benefit on clinical outcomes in select patients with HF. However, the majority of studies supporting the use of these devices have limited data on patients with CKD or end-stage renal disease. In this review, we discuss the intersection of HF and CKD as it relates to progressive HF and the risk of sudden death. Although these disorders are common and have a poor prognosis, the evidence available for guiding treatment decisions for the use of ICD and CRT devices in these patients is lacking. Given this lack of clear evidence, pragmatic clinical trials and comparative effectiveness studies are needed to help identify the appropriate use of ICD and CRT devices in this high-risk population of patients with HF and CKD.
Copyright © 2011 American College of Cardiology Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.