Background The impact of catheter ablation of ventricular tachycardia (VT) on all-cause mortality remains unknown. Objective The purpose of this study was to examine the association between VT recurrence after ablation and survival in patients with scar-related VT. Methods Analysis of 2061 patients with structural heart disease referred for catheter ablation of scar-related VT from 12 international centers was performed. Data on clinical and procedural variables, VT recurrence, and mortality were analyzed. Kaplan-Meier analysis was used to estimate freedom from recurrent VT, transplant, and death. Cox proportional hazards frailty models were used to analyze the effect of risk factors on VT recurrence and mortality. Results One-year freedom from VT recurrence was 70% (72% in ischemic and 68% in nonischemic cardiomyopathy). Fifty-seven patients (3%) underwent cardiac transplantation, and 216 (10%) died during follow-up. At 1 year, the estimated rate of transplant and/or mortality was 15% (same for ischemic and nonischemic cardiomyopathy). Transplant-free survival was significantly higher in patients without VT recurrence than in those with recurrence (90% vs 71%, P <.001). In multivariable analysis, recurrence of VT after ablation showed the highest risk for transplant and/or mortality [hazard ratio 6.9 (95% CI 5.3-9.0), P <.001]. In patients with ejection fraction <30% and across all New York Heart Association functional classes, improved transplant-free survival was seen in those without VT recurrence. Conclusion Catheter ablation of VT in patients with structural heart disease results in 70% freedom from VT recurrence, with an overall transplant and/or mortality rate of 15% at 1 year. Freedom from VT recurrence is associated with improved transplant-free survival, independent of heart failure severity.
- Ventricular tachycardia