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Prognosis of the bradycardia pacemaker recipient assessed at first implantation: a nationwide cohort study
  1. Erik O Udo1,2,
  2. Norbert M van Hemel1,
  3. Nicolaas P A Zuithoff2,
  4. Pieter A Doevendans1,
  5. Karel G M Moons2
  1. 1Department of Cardiology, UMC Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  2. 2Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, UMC Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to E O Udo, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, PO box 85500, Utrecht 3508 GA, The Netherlands; e.o.udo{at}


Objective Pacing technology and care have improved notably over the past decade, justifying an update on the long-term prognosis and pre-implantation determinants of prognosis of bradycardia pacemaker (PM) recipients.

Design Prospective cohort study.

Setting 23 Dutch pacemaker centres

Patients Pre-implantation characteristics of 1517 patients receiving a first bradycardia PM between 2003–2007 were studied in relation to survival.

Interventions None; patients were followed up during routine clinical practice.

Main outcome measures Cause and time to death.

Results At the end of a mean follow-up of 5.8 (SD 1.1) years, 512 patients (33%) died, mostly of non-cardiac cause (67%). There were two PM related deaths. Survival rates were 93%, 81%, 69%, and 61% after 1, 3, 5 and 7 years, respectively. PM recipients without concomitant cardiovascular disease at implantation showed survival rates comparable to age and sex matched controls. Predictors at time of implantation associated with cardiac mortality were: age, coronary artery disease (CAD), diabetes, heart failure, valve disease, and the indication for PM implantation. Predictors for all cause mortality were: male gender, age, body mass index, CAD, cardiac surgery, diabetes, heart failure, and maintained atrioventricular synchrony.

Conclusions A pre-implantation history of heart failure, CAD, and diabetes are the most important predictors for worse prognosis in PM recipients. Without baseline heart disease, survival rates equal that of the general population, suggesting that the prognosis of contemporary PM recipients is mainly determined by comorbid diseases and a bradycardia pacing indication as such does not influence survival.

Clinical Trial Registration Identifier: NCT00135174.

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