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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

Implantable loop recorder versus conventional diagnostic workup for unexplained recurrent syncope

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, April 2016
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  • Good Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (66th percentile)

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Implantable loop recorder versus conventional diagnostic workup for unexplained recurrent syncope
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, April 2016
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd011637.pub2
Pubmed ID

Monica Solbiati, Giorgio Costantino, Giovanni Casazza, Franca Dipaola, Andrea Galli, Raffaello Furlan, Nicola Montano, Robert Sheldon


The most recent syncope guideline recommends that implantable loop recorders (ILRs) are implanted in the early phase of evaluation of people with recurrent syncope of uncertain origin in the absence of high-risk criteria, and in high-risk patients after a negative evaluation. Observational and case-control studies have shown that loop recorders lead to earlier diagnosis and reduce the rate of unexplained syncopes, justifying their use in clinical practice. However, only randomised clinical trials with an emphasis on a primary outcome of specific ILR-guided diagnosis and therapy, rather than simply electrocardiogram (ECG) diagnosis, might change clinical practice. To assess the incidence of mortality, quality of life, adverse events and costs of ILRs versus conventional diagnostic workup in people with unexplained syncope. We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL, Issue 3, 2015), MEDLINE, EMBASE, ClinicalTrials.gov and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) Search Portal in April 2015. No language restriction was applied. We included all randomised controlled trials of adult participants (i.e. ≥ 18 years old) with a diagnosis of unexplained syncope comparing ILR with standard diagnostic workup. Two independent review authors screened titles and abstracts of all potential studies we identified as a result of the literature search, extracted study characteristics and outcome data from included studies and assessed risk of bias for each study using the criteria outlined in the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. We contacted authors of trials for missing data. We analysed dichotomous data (all-cause mortality and aetiologic diagnosis) as risk ratios (RR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). We used the Chi(2) test to assess statistical heterogeneity (with P < 0.1) and the I² statistic to measure heterogeneity among the trials. We created a 'Summary of findings' table using the five GRADE considerations (study limitations, consistency of effect, imprecision, indirectness and publication bias) to assess the quality of a body of evidence as it relates to the studies which contribute data to the meta-analyses for the prespecified outcomes. We included four trials involving a total of 579 participants. With the limitation that only two studies reported data on mortality and none of them had considered death as a primary endpoint, the meta-analysis showed no evidence of a difference in the risk of long-term mortality between participants who received ILR and those who were managed conventionally at follow-up (RR 0.97, 95% CI 0.41 to 2.30; participants = 255; studies = 2; very low quality evidence) with no evidence of heterogeneity. No data on short term mortality were available. Two studies reported data on adverse events after ILR implant. Due to the lack of data on adverse events in one of the studies' arms, a formal meta-analysis was not performed for this outcome.Data from two trials seemed to show no difference in quality of life, although this finding was not supported by a formal analysis due to the differences in both the scores used and the way the data were reported. Data from two studies seemed to show a trend towards a reduction in syncope relapses after diagnosis in participants implanted with ILR. Cost analyses from two studies showed higher overall mean costs in the ILR group, if the costs incurred by the ILR implant were counted. The mean cost per diagnosis and the mean cost per arrhythmic diagnosis were lower for participants randomised to ILR implant.Participants who underwent ILR implantation experienced higher rates of diagnosis (RR (in favour of ILR) 0.61, 95% CI 0.54 to 0.68; participants = 579; studies = 4; moderate quality evidence), as compared to participants in the standard assessment group, with no evidence of heterogeneity. Our systematic review shows that there is no evidence that an ILR-based diagnostic strategy reduces long-term mortality as compared to a standard diagnostic assessment (very low quality evidence). No data were available for short-term all-cause mortality. Moderate quality evidence shows that an ILR-based diagnostic strategy increases the rate of aetiologic diagnosis as compared to a standard diagnostic pathway. No conclusive data were available on the other end-points analysed.Further trials evaluating the effect of ILRs in the diagnostic strategy of people with recurrent unexplained syncope are warranted. Future research should focus on the assessment of the ability of ILRs to change clinically relevant outcomes, such as quality of life, syncope relapse and costs.

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Mendeley readers

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 174 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Unknown 174 100%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 30 17%
Student > Bachelor 23 13%
Student > Ph. D. Student 19 11%
Student > Doctoral Student 10 6%
Student > Postgraduate 8 5%
Other 26 15%
Unknown 58 33%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 51 29%
Nursing and Health Professions 25 14%
Psychology 9 5%
Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Science 6 3%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 3 2%
Other 13 7%
Unknown 67 39%
Attention Score in Context

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 4. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 06 March 2019.
All research outputs
of 25,457,858 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
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Outputs of similar age
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Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 267 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 25,457,858 research outputs across all sources so far. This one has received more attention than most of these and is in the 69th percentile.
So far Altmetric has tracked 11,499 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 40.0. This one is in the 24th percentile – i.e., 24% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 313,610 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 66% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 267 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one is in the 24th percentile – i.e., 24% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.