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Syncope and implantable loop recorders: Good value for money?
Date:9/1/2009

udy was 80 years of age. The implantable ECG monitor recorded a heart rhythm at the time of symptoms in two thirds of patients. Six patients were found to have an abnormal heart rhythm, viz. severe slowing of the heart beats, to the point of an absent heart rhythm, for a few seconds. In four other patients, the heart rhythm was found to slow but not as severely as the previous group. In 4 others, the implantable ECG monitor recorded signals due to muscle shaking in a pattern commonly seen in patients with epilepsy, thus giving the doctors a clue to the diagnosis. All but one of the six patients with severe slowing of the heart beats underwent a pacemaker. Four of the five (80%) who had pacemakers were subsequently free of symptoms over the following 9 months. Tilt table testing was positive in 5 of 40 patients. None of the patients with a positive tilt table test showed severe slowing of the heart rhythm on the implantable ECG monitor.

REVISE is the first study to show, that by means of an implantable ECG recorder, 1 in 8 patients who were previously thought to have epilepsy or in whom this diagnosis was in doubt, have an abnormality in their heart rhythm as a cause of their symptoms. Eighty percent of those who underwent a pacemaker insertion based on the results of the ECG loop recorder were subsequently found to be free of their symptoms. The implantable ECG loop recorder was also helpful in pointing towards a diagnosis of epilepsy by the pattern of the signals recorded on it. The findings of this small study will need confirmation in a larger group of patients.


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Contact: Jacquelline Partarrieu
jpartarrieu@escardio.org
0034-600-919-617
European Society of Cardiology
Source:Eurekalert

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