Study: High Influenza Activity Linked with Increased Ventricular Arrhythmia Risk

This study, seeking to explore the relationship between seasonal influenza and ventricular arrhythmias, retrospectively looked at 163,831 patients enrolled in the Abbott Medical Merlin.net remote monitoring network between 2009 and 2015 with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) or cardiac resynchronization device (CRT-D). Using a generalized linear model (GLM), the authors used cross-correlation for the assessment of the temporal relationship between influenza activity and ventricular arrhythmias requiring shock therapy or antitachycardia pacing. After adjustment for within-patient effects, age, sex, device type, and calendar year, the results suggested a significant correlation between high influenza activity and incident ventricular arrhythmias requiring treatment. Patients with high influenza activity were more likely to need shock treatment (OR=1.06; P<0.001) or antitachycardia pacing (OR=1.06; P<0.0001).