A Randomized Controlled Trial to Evaluate the Safety and Efficacy of Cardiac Contractility Modulation

William T. Abraham, Karl Heinz Kuck, Rochelle L. Goldsmith, Jo Ann Lindenfeld, Vivek Y. Reddy, Peter E. Carson, Douglas L. Mann, Benjamin Saville, Helen Parise, Rodrigo Chan, Phi Wiegn, Jeffrey L. Hastings, Andrew J. Kaplan, Frank Edelmann, Lars Luthje, Rami Kahwash, Gery F. Tomassoni, David D. Gutterman, Angela Stagg, Daniel BurkhoffGerd Hasenfuß

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

169 Scopus citations


Objectives: This study sought to confirm a subgroup analysis of the prior FIX-HF-5 (Evaluate Safety and Efficacy of the OPTIMIZER System in Subjects With Moderate-to-Severe Heart Failure) study showing that cardiac contractility modulation (CCM) improved exercise tolerance (ET) and quality of life in patients with ejection fractions between 25% and 45%. Background: CCM therapy for New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class III and IV heart failure (HF) patients consists of nonexcitatory electrical signals delivered to the heart during the absolute refractory period. Methods: A total of 160 patients with NYHA functional class III or IV symptoms, QRS duration <130 ms, and ejection fraction ≥25% and ≤45% were randomized to continued medical therapy (control, n = 86) or CCM (treatment, n = 74, unblinded) for 24 weeks. Peak Vo2 (primary endpoint), Minnesota Living With Heart Failure questionnaire, NYHA functional class, and 6-min hall walk were measured at baseline and at 12 and 24 weeks. Bayesian repeated measures linear modeling was used for the primary endpoint analysis with 30% borrowing from the FIX-HF-5 subgroup. Safety was assessed by the percentage of patients free of device-related adverse events with a pre-specified lower bound of 70%. Results: The difference in peak Vo2 between groups was 0.84 (95% Bayesian credible interval: 0.123 to 1.552) ml O2/kg/min, satisfying the primary endpoint. Minnesota Living With Heart Failure questionnaire (p < 0.001), NYHA functional class (p < 0.001), and 6-min hall walk (p = 0.02) were all better in the treatment versus control group. There were 7 device-related events, yielding a lower bound of 80% of patients free of events, satisfying the primary safety endpoint. The composite of cardiovascular death and HF hospitalizations was reduced from 10.8% to 2.9% (p = 0.048). Conclusions: CCM is safe, improves exercise tolerance and quality of life in the specified group of HF patients, and leads to fewer HF hospitalizations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)874-883
Number of pages10
JournalJACC: Heart Failure
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2018


  • QRS duration
  • exercise tolerance
  • heart failure
  • peak Vo
  • quality of life


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