Sex Differences in Electrophysiology, Ventricular Tachyarrhythmia, Cardiac Arrest and Sudden Cardiac Death Following Acute Myocardial Infarction

Sarah Zaman, Tejas Deshmukh, Anum Aslam, Catherine Martin, Pramesh Kovoor

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Women experience less appropriate implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) interventions and are underrepresented in randomised ICD trials. Sex-differences in inducible and spontaneous ventricular tachycardia/fibrillation (VT/VF), cardiac arrest and sudden cardiac death (SCD) early post-myocardial infarction (MI) require further study. Methods: Consecutive ST-elevation MI patients with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF)≤40% underwent electrophysiology study (EPS) to target early prevention of SCD. An ICD was implanted for a positive (inducible monomorphic VT) but not a negative (no arrhythmia or inducible VF) EPS. The combined primary endpoint of VT/VF (spontaneous or ICD-treated), cardiac arrest or SCD was assessed using competing risk survival analysis in women versus men with adjustment for confounders. Logistic regression was used to determine independent predictors of inducible VT at EPS. Results: A total of 403 patients (16.9% female) underwent EPS. Women were significantly older than men but with similar LVEF (31.5 ± 6.3 versus 31.6 ± 6.4%, p = 0.91). Electrophysiology study was positive for inducible VT in 22.1% and 33.4% (p = 0.066) and an ICD implanted in 25.0% and 33.4% (p = 0.356) of women versus men. Appropriate ICD activations (VT/VF) occurred in 5.9% of women and 36.6% of men (p = 0.012). The adjusted cumulative primary endpoint incidence was significantly lower in women than men (1.6% versus 26.5%, p = 0.03). Female sex was not an independent predictor of inducible VT at EPS (HR 0.63, 95% CI 0.33–1.23, p = 0.178). Conclusions: Women with early post-MI cardiomyopathy had lower VT/VF, cardiac arrest and SCD, compared to men. In ICD recipients the rate of appropriate activations was six-fold less in women compared to men.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1025-1031
Number of pages7
JournalHeart Lung and Circulation
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020


  • Electrophysiology test
  • Sex disparities
  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Ventricular tachycardia
  • Women

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