Background: The benefit of novel implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) programming in reducing inappropriate ICD therapy and mortality was demonstrated in Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trial-Reduce Inappropriate Therapy (MADIT-RIT). However, the cause of mortality reduction remains incompletely evaluated. We aimed to identify factors associated with mortality, with focus on ICD therapy and programming in the MADIT-RIT population. Methods and Results: In MADIT-RIT, 1500 patients with a primary prophylactic indication for ICD or cardiac resynchronization therapy with defibrillator were randomized to 1 of 3 different ICD programming arms: conventional programming (ventricular tachycardia zone ≥170 beats per minute), high-rate programming (ventricular tachycardia zone ≥200 beats per minute), and delayed programming (60-second delay before therapy ≥170 beats per minute). Multivariate Cox models were used to assess the influence of time-dependent appropriate and inappropriate ICD therapy (shock and antitachycardia pacing) and randomized programming arm on all-cause mortality. During an average follow-up of 1.4±0.6 years, 71 of 1500 (5%) patients died: cardiac in 40 patients (56.3%), noncardiac in 23 patients (32.4%), and unknown in 8 patients (11.3%). Appropriate shocks (hazard ratio, 6.32; 95% confidence interval, 3.13-12.75; P<0.001) and inappropriate therapy (hazard ratio, 2.61; 95% confidence interval, 1.28-5.31; P=0.01) were significantly associated with an increased mortality risk. There was no evidence of increased mortality risk in patients who experienced appropriate antitachycardia pacing only (hazard ratio, 1.02; 95% confidence interval, 0.36-2.88; P=0.98). Randomization to conventional programming was identified as an independent predictor of death when compared with patients randomized to high-rate programming (hazard ratio, 2.0; 95% confidence interval, 1.06-3.71; P=0.03). Conclusions: In MADIT-RIT, appropriate shocks, inappropriate ICD therapy, and randomization to conventional ICD programming were independently associated with an increased mortality risk. Appropriate antitachycardia pacing was not related to an adverse outcome.