Implantable cardioverter defibrillator with and without defibrillation threshold testing

Pablo Codner, Roman Nevzorov, Jairo Kusniec, Moti Haim, Ronit Zabarski, Boris Strasberg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Defibrillation threshold (DFT) testing at the time of implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) insertion is performed routinely. This practice is being reconsidered due to doubts about its ability to improve ICD efficacy and evidence that survival may not be affected by the test. Objectives: To compare the outcome of ICD recipients who underwent DFT testing and those who did not. Methods: A total of 213 eligible patients were implanted with an ICD between 2004 and 2009. DFT testing was performed in 80 of them. We compared total mortality, appropriate and inappropriate ICD shocks, and anti-tachycardia pacing (ATP) events between DFT and non-DFT patients during a follow-up of 2 years. Results: On comparing the DFT and non-DFT groups, we found a 2 year mortality rate of 7.5% versus 8.3%, respectively (P = 0.8). Furthermore, 20.7% of patients in the DFT group and 12.4% in the non-DFT group had at least one episode of ICD shock (P = 0.15). With regard to ICD treatment (ICD shocks or ATP events), 57.7% in the DFT group and 64.2% in the non-DFT group received appropriate treatments (P = 0.78). Conclusions: No significant differences in the incidence of 2 year mortality or percentage of ICD treatment emerged between the DFT and non-DFT groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-346
Number of pages4
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Anti-tachycardia pacing (ATP)
  • Defibrillation threshold (DFT)
  • Implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)
  • Sudden death
  • Ventricular fibrillation (VF)
  • Ventricular tachycardia (VT)


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