Safety and Efficacy of the Totally Subcutaneous Implantable Defibrillator: 2-Year Results From a Pooled Analysis of the IDE Study and EFFORTLESS Registry

J Am Coll Cardiol. 2015 Apr 28;65(16):1605-1615. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2015.02.047.


Background: The entirely subcutaneous implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (S-ICD) is the first implantable defibrillator that avoids placing electrodes in or around the heart. Two large prospective studies (IDE [S-ICD System IDE Clinical Investigation] and EFFORTLESS [Boston Scientific Post Market S-ICD Registry]) have reported 6-month to 1-year data on the S-ICD.

Objectives: The objective of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the S-ICD in a large diverse population.

Methods: Data from the IDE and EFFORTLESS studies were pooled. Shocks were independently adjudicated, and complications were measured with a standardized classification scheme. Enrollment date quartiles were used to assess event rates over time.

Results: Eight hundred eighty-two patients who underwent implantation were followed for 651±345 days. Spontaneous ventricular tachyarrhythmia (VT)/ventricular fibrillation (VF) events (n=111) were treated in 59 patients; 100 (90.1%) events were terminated with 1 shock, and 109 events (98.2%) were terminated within the 5 available shocks. The estimated 3-year inappropriate shock rate was 13.1%. Estimated 3-year, all-cause mortality was 4.7% (95% confidence interval: 0.9% to 8.5%), with 26 deaths (2.9%). Device-related complications occurred in 11.1% of patients at 3 years. There were no electrode failures, and no S-ICD-related endocarditis or bacteremia occurred. Three devices (0.3%) were replaced for right ventricular pacing. The 6-month complication rate decreased by quartile of enrollment (Q1: 8.9%; Q4: 5.5%), and there was a trend toward a reduction in inappropriate shocks (Q1: 6.9% Q4: 4.5%).

Conclusions: The S-ICD demonstrated high efficacy for VT/VF. Complications and inappropriate shock rates were reduced consistently with strategic programming and as operator experience increased. These data provide further evidence for the safety and efficacy of the S-ICD. (Boston Scientific Post Market S-ICD Registry [EFFORTLESS]; NCT01085435; S-ICD® System IDE Clinical Study; NCT01064076).

Keywords: pacing; rhythm disorders; tachyarrhythmias; ventricular fibrillation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Defibrillators, Implantable* / adverse effects
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Safety
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / therapy
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ventricular Fibrillation / therapy

Associated data