Pacemaker and Implanted Internal Defibrillator Therapy

Also known as: implantable cardioverter defibrillator.

What is pacemaker and implanted internal defibrillator therapy?

A pacemaker and implanted internal defibrillator are devices implanted in the chest to control your heart rate. A pacemaker keeps the heart rate steady with electrical pulses if you have arrhythmia. If you have dangerous arrhythmia, the implanted internal defibrillator shocks the heart when the rhythm becomes dangerous. The newest devices are both a pacemaker and implanted internal defibrillator in one.
 

What happens during the therapy?

To implant the device, your doctor will use a sheath to tap into a blood vessel. Then the lead wire from the devices will be threaded to the heart. The device itself is surgically implanted under the skin through an incision by the collarbone. Then the incision is closed with sutures. 
 

Is any special preparation needed?

You may need to avoid food or drink before the procedure. You also may need to stop taking certain medications for a short period of time.
 

What are the risk factors?

Certain electrical devices can interact negatively with the pacemaker or implanted internal defibrillator. It’s best to avoid metal detectors, MRI, anti-theft devices in stores or high-voltage machinery. You should also keep cell phones at least six inches away from the device and use caution with high-intensity sports.

Pacemaker and implanted internal defibrillator therapy at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital: Medical professionals at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital offer the latest in implanted internal defibrillator technology.

Reviewed by: Michael Manuel Lopez, MD

This page was last updated on: 7/24/2018 3:19:05 PM

From the Newsdesk

August Patient of the Month: Luife
While he was still inside his mother’s womb, Luife was diagnosed with transposition of the great arteries, a congenital heart defect. Shortly after birth, Luife was taken by ambulance to the cardiac team at Nicklaus Children’s. The pediatric cardiology team took Luife’s heart apart, piece by delicate piece, and successfully, put it back together. Today, Luife is a healthy, active and outgoing 8-year-old boy who wears his “Scar of Honor” with pride. 
August Patient of the Month: Luife
While he was still inside his mother’s womb, Luife was diagnosed with transposition of the great arteries, a congenital heart defect. Shortly after birth, Luife was taken by ambulance to the cardiac team at Nicklaus Children’s. The pediatric cardiology team took Luife’s heart apart, piece by delicate piece, and successfully, put it back together. Today, Luife is a healthy, active and outgoing 8-year-old boy who wears his “Scar of Honor” with pride. 

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Lourdes Prieto, MD of Nicklaus Children's Hospital is a pediatric and adult congenital cardiologist with The Heart Program.