CRT , cardiac resynchronisation therapy is being projected as a revolutionary treatment for cardiac failure , where a failing heart is rewired electrically through multiple leads and make it contract more effectively.The success rate of CRT was highly variable.The basic question here is, there should be a significant documentation of desynchronisation prior to CRT , for resynchronisation to be effective. Further , the sites of myocardial stimulation ( Coronary sinus/LV epicardial) , dose of electricity and the sequence of stimulation and the electrical delay are very critical. Achieving this into perfection is not a simple job and is real rocket science ! ( If we can achieve 5 % of what the normal purkinje network do within the LV we can term it a huge success.) Let us hope we catch up with nature . Finally , it is ironical the sites of LV pacing , electrophysiologists select currently is infact not selected by them but pre selected by the patients coronary venous anatomy ! .So as on date , one can imagine how scientific this treatment could be !
Initially it was adviced for patients with only wide qrs later for even normal qrs patients.When people started using it indiscriminately insurance companies started to rethink and thus came the RETHINQ study in NEJM and brought a full stop to CRT in normal qrs CHF.
How to identify who will benefit from the costly CRT ?
It is a million dollar question. So millions of dollars were spent to identify the correct tool to identify the true responders to CRT.Echo cardiography with sophisticated methods tissue doppler, tissue tracking and , 3 D echo ,velocity vector imaging were done .These methods are not only costly but also time consuming and hugely expertise driven.
Does all this efforts with advanced echo techniques worthwhile ?
This simple question was addressed in PROSPECT study in circulation