Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
BioMed Research International
Volume 2018, Article ID 3417643, 12 pages
Research Article

Cost Saving Potential of an Early Detection of Atrial Fibrillation in Patients after ICD Implantation

1Institute for Social Medicine, Epidemiology and Health Economics, Charite-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Luisenstrasse 57, 10117 Berlin, Germany
2Biotronik, Woermannkehre 1, 12359 Berlin, Germany
3German Heart Centre Munich, Department of Electrophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany

Correspondence should be addressed to Thomas Reinhold; ed.etirahc@dlohnier.samoht

Received 4 January 2018; Revised 28 June 2018; Accepted 11 July 2018; Published 14 August 2018

Academic Editor: Natale Daniele Brunetti

Copyright © 2018 Thomas Reinhold et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a relevant comorbidity in recipients of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICD). Latest generation single-chamber ICD allow the additional sensing of atrial tachyarrhythmias and, therefore, contribute to the early detection and treatment of AF, potentially preventing AF-related stroke. The present study aimed to measure the impact on patient-related costs of this new ICD compared to conventional ICD. A Markov model was developed to simulate the long-term incidence of stroke in patients treated with a single-chamber ICD with or without atrial sensing capabilities. The median annual cost per patient and its difference, the number of strokes avoided, and the cost per stroke avoided were estimated. During a 9-year horizon, the costs for the ICD and stroke treatment were €570 per patient-year for an ICD with atrial sensing capabilities and €491 per patient-year for a conventional ICD. Per 1,000 patients, 4.6 strokes per year are assumed to be avoided by the new device. Higher CHA2DS2-VASc scores are associated with higher numbers of avoided strokes and larger potential for cost savings. Apart from clinical advantages, the use of ICD with atrial sensing capabilities may reduce the incidence of stroke and, in high-risk patients, may also contribute to reduce overall health care costs.