Radiofrequency ablation may prevent or treat atrial and ventricular arrhythmias. Since some of these arrhythmias are associated with sudden cardiac death, it has been hypothesized that ablation may prevent sudden death in certain cases. We performed a literature search to better understand under which circumstances ablation may prevent sudden death and found little randomized data demonstrating the long-term effects of ablation. Current literature shows that ablation clearly prevents symptoms of arrhythmia and may reduce the incidence of sudden cardiac death in select patients, although data does not indicate improved mortality. Ongoing clinical trials are needed to better define the role of ablation in preventing sudden cardiac death.