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Pacemaker Study Stopped for Safety

Patients with Implanted Defibrillators Should Have Older-Style Pacemaker

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American Heart Association president Robert O. Bonow, MD, tells WebMD that the new findings will surprise a lot of physicians who believed that dual-chamber, pacing was better for all patients.

"This is reminiscent of the study that came out earlier this week showing that good, old, cheap diuretics may be just as good or better than the newer more expensive medications (for lowering blood pressure)," he says. "In this case, the simpler pacing method, which is easier to maintain and cheaper, may also be just as good or better."

Bonow agrees that patients with defibrillators need to talk to their physicians, and have their devices reprogrammed, if needed.

"I'm not saying they need to rush out and see their doctor tomorrow," he says. "But they should definitely discuss it at their next evaluation."

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