Background: This study reports the impact of cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) on hospitalizations in patients randomized to implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) or ICD-CRT in the Resynchronization-Defibrillation for Ambulatory Heart Failure Trial (RAFT).
Methods and results: Hospitalization rates and lengths of hospital stay were compared between the 2 groups. At the 18-month follow-up, the numbers of patients hospitalized for any cause were similar in the ICD (n=351, 38.8%) and ICD-CRT (n=331, 30.0%) groups. The number of patients hospitalized for heart failure was significantly lower in the ICD-CRT (n=101, 11.3%) compared with the ICD (n=141, 15.6%; P=0.003) group. The number of patients hospitalized for a device-related indication was similar in the ICD-CRT group (n=147, 16.4%) and ICD group (n=126, 13.9%; P=0.148). The total number of hospitalizations for any cause (n=1448 versus n=1553; P=0.042), any cardiovascular cause (n=667 versus n=790; P=0.017), and any heart failure cause (n=385 versus n=505; P<0.0001) was significantly lower in ICD-CRT group compared with the ICD group, whereas the number of hospitalizations for device-related causes was significantly higher in the ICD-CRT group compared with the ICD group (246 versus 159; P<0.001). Although the reduction in hospitalizations for heart failure in the CRT-ICD group was offset by an increased number of hospitalizations for device-related indications, the length of hospital stay for any cause was significantly shorter in the ICD-CRT group (8.83±13.30 days) compared with the ICD group (9.59±14.40 days; P=0.005).
Conclusion: ICD-CRT therapy significantly reduces hospitalizations and total days in hospital in patients with New York Heart Association class II/III heart failure compared with ICD therapy despite increased admissions for device-related indications.
Clinical trial registration url: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT00251251.
Keywords: cardiac resynchronization therapy; heart failure; hospitalization.
© 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.