A study in the New England Journal of Medicine indicated that a heart resynchronization device was as effective as a more expensive and complex resynchronization device that included a defibrillator. The European study of more than 800 patients found that the simpler device yielded similar rates of future complications and mortality as an earlier study of the more expensive device, raising questions about whether private and government insurers will continue to pay for the combination device. The researchers said a larger study of about 1,300 patients will be needed to determine if the more expensive device significantly decreases sudden heart-related deaths, which implantable defibrillators are meant to prevent. Medtronic, which makes the device in the NEJM report, supported the study with a grant. Read the abstract. -- by Vince Galloro
Study indicates less costly heart device may be as good
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