This is a trial to examine the effects of meditation on the incidence of ventricular
arrhythmias and the psychological profiles in patients with implanted cardiac
We wish to test the following hypotheses:
1. Vipassana meditation reduces the incidence of atrial and ventricular arrhythmias in
patients with congestive heart failure.
2. Vipassana meditation improves the psychological profile in patients with CHF. In this
study, subjects meeting the inclusion and exclusion criteria will be recruited into the
study after obtaining informed consent. The subjects will then be randomized into
either an experimental group ( Meditation) or into a control group (usual care).
This is a single center, investigator-initiated, randomized, controlled trial to examine the
effects of meditation on the incidence of ventricular arrhythmias and the psychological
profiles in patients with implanted cardiac defibrillators and cardiac resynchronization
devices. The former are used to protect patients against cardiac fibrillation and the
latter for synchronizing the contractions of the two ventricles.
- Men and women aged 18 to 85
- All patients with NYHA class II to III congestive heart failure symptoms from
ischemic and non-ischemic etiology who received a defibrillator at least 3 months
prior to enrollment.
- All patients with NYHA class III and IV symptoms, QRS complex of the ECG more than
120 ms, who received device for cardiac resynchronization at least 3 months prior to
enrollment. These devices are placed when the two ventricles beat at slightly
different times. These devices also have the capacity to record arrhythmias as the
- Patients with life expectancy less than 6 months from non-cardiac causes
- Pregnant women
- History of major psychosis.
- Significant chronic liver, renal and pulmonary disease
- Active alcohol and drug abuse