The rationale and design of the Shockless IMPLant Evaluation (SIMPLE) trial: A randomized, controlled trial of defibrillation testing at the time of defibrillator implantation
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Defibrillation testing (DT) has been an integral part of defibrillator (implantable cardioverter defibrillator [ICD]) implantation; however, there is little evidence that it improves outcomes. Surveys show a trend toward ICD implantation without DT, which now exceeds 30% to 60% in some regions. Because there is no evidence to support dramatic shift in practice, a randomized trial is urgently needed. The SIMPLE trial will determine if ICD implantation without any DT is noninferior to implantation with DT. Patients will be eligible if they are receiving their first ICD using a Boston Scientific device (Boston Scientific, Natick, MA). Patients will be randomized to DT or no DT at the time of ICD implantation. In the DT arm, physicians will make all reasonable efforts to ensure 1 successful intraoperative defibrillation at 17 J or 2 at 21 J. The first clinical shock in all tachycardia zones will be set to 31 J for all patients. The primary outcome of SIMPLE will be the composite of ineffective appropriate shock or arrhythmic death. The safety outcome of SIMPLE will include a composite of potentially DT-related procedural complications within 30 days of ICD implantation. Several secondary outcomes will be evaluated, including all-cause mortality and heart failure hospitalization. Enrollment of 2,500 patients with 3.5-year mean follow-up will provide sufficient statistical power to demonstrate noninferiority. The study is being performed at approximately 90 centers in Canada, Europe, Israel, and Asia Pacific with final results expected in 2013.
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