In older patients the aging process is complicated by underlying comorbid diseases. An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) has been shown to reduce mortality due to sudden cardiac death and improve survival in patients at risk of lethal arrhythmia. However, its role in older adults with coronary artery disease (CAD) is less well understood. A literature review of ICD trials was conducted, assessing efficacy and feasibility of the device in older adults.
The use of an ICD should be individualized in older patients. ICD therapy is feasible and safe in preventing sudden cardiac death. Age is insufficient to exclude an older adult with CAD from ICD therapy.
Key words: coronary artery disease, implantable cardioverter-defibrillator, sudden cardiac death, ventricular tachycardia, cardiac resynchronization therapy.