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The implantation of a cardioverter-defibrillator

The implantation of a cardioverter-defibrillatorImplantation of a cardioverter-defibrillator in Assuta requires minor surgery during which used general anesthesia. The patient is given medication before surgery, so that he could relax and fall asleep. The drug is also injected into the area where the device will be installed. It can be treated with antibiotics to prevent infection.

Wire from an ICD will be put through a vein to the right place in my heart. All this is performed under X-ray control. When the wires reach a certain area, the doctor will make a small incision in the chest or abdomen skin. Through him, he will introduce a metal box under the skin. The box includes a battery, a pulse generator and a computer.

After placing the device doctor will check its functioning. Thereafter, the incision was sutured. The operation takes several hours.

After installing the cardioverter-defibrillator

At the hospital, Assuta will need to stay 1-2 days. During this time, doctors will check the pulse, make sure the device is working properly.

At least a week the patient will not be able to drive a car.

In a period of several days to several weeks after surgery a person can feel pain, there will be a swelling in the area where placed cardioverter defibrillator. Pain is usually mild analgesics, which are discharged without a prescription, will have the desired effect and facilitate state.

The doctor will recommend avoiding strenuous exercise, lifting weights for a month after the installation of cardioverter-defibrillator. Most people return to normal activities within a few days after surgery.

What are the risks of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators?

Unnecessary electrical impulses

Sometimes the device can produce discharges that are not necessary. Salvage pulse or very palpitations can sometimes cause unnecessary discharges. They can also occur if a person forgot to take his medication.

Children tend to be more physically active than adults. They are more likely to receive unnecessary discharges, than older people.

Impulses that are sent too often or at the wrong time, leading to organ damage or cause irregular and sometimes dangerous heartbeat. It can also cause pain.

If necessary, the physician reprograms the ICD or prescribe a prescription for medication to excess discharges were observed less frequently.

Risks associated with surgery

Certain risks are associated with the operation of installing the device:

  • Swelling, bruising or infection in the area where the ICD was placed.
  • Bleeding from the area where the device has been installed.
  • Damage to blood vessels, nerves or heart.
  • A collapsed lung.
  • Bad reaction to the drug used in anesthesia.

Other potential adverse consequences

People with ICDs may be at higher risk of developing heart failure. It is not clear whether cardioverter defibrillator increases the probability or just as a whole is more common in people who are in need of this unit.

Although rare, but the device may not work properly and does not correct the abnormal heart rhythm. If this occurs, the physician reprograms the device. If an ICD fails, it is replaced.

The longer is cardioverter defibrillator in the body, the greater the likelihood that a person will have some risks.

As the installation of cardioverter-defibrillator will affect the way of life?

Low-energy discharge device a person can not feel because they do not cause pain, it may feel palpitations in the chest.

High-energy pulses last for only a fraction of a second, but can cause painful shock, depends on the force.

The doctor prescribes medication to reduce the number of irregular heartbeats. This reduces the number of high bits. These drugs include amiodarone or sotalol and beta-blockers.

You may need to visit the doctor after heavy discharges. If they occur in large numbers in a short time, you should always consult a specialist or emergency room immediately.

Devices that may disrupt cardiac defibrillators

After implantation cardioverter-defibrillator should avoid close and prolonged contact with the electrical devices that have strong magnetic fields. It can be:

  • Mobile phones and MP3-players.
  • Household appliances, such as microwaves.
  • High voltage wires.
  • Metal detectors.
  • Industrial Welding aggregators.
  • Electric generators.

These devices can disrupt the flow of electrical signals from the ICD. Man is not able to determine if the device is damaged.

The probability that the work unit disrupted depends on contact time with the aforementioned devices and proximity of finding them.

To be safe, some experts recommend not to carry a mobile phone or MP3-player into a shirt pocket next to the ICD, if they are included. Cell phone a man can keep his ear, listening to MP3-player by placing it in your hand, away from the unit installation area.

You can use the appliances, but avoid close and prolonged contact to that has not stopped the cardioverter.

A person can pass through the security system (metal detectors) at a normal pace, but do not stand or sit next to them. It is important to notify the inspection at airports, that the body is implanted device.

You need to stay at a distance of not less than 2 meters from the industrial welding machines or electric power generators. Rarely cardioverter defibrillator can cause unnecessary discharges during long flights.

Procedures that can disrupt the ICD

Some medical procedures can disrupt the functioning of the device. These include:

  • MRI;
  • Shock wave lithotripsy to treat kidney stones;
  • electrocautery to stop bleeding during surgery.

All doctors, dentists and medical technicians should know that the body is implanted ICD. Doctor in Assuta give a map that indicates the presence of the device in the body, it should be carried in a wallet. You can use a special bracelet or product around your neck, which will indicate the presence of cardiac defibrillators.

Daily activities after implantation of a cardioverter-defibrillator

Physical activity

ICD usually does not limit a person in any classes or exercises, including intensive.

But we should not be engaged in full contact sports such as football. This can lead to damage or displacement of the wires to the heart. A doctor at Assuta will talk about the possible amount of physical activity and sports, recommended that it ensured the safety of the patient.


driving should be avoided for at least a week until the body can not recover from the operation. If there was a sudden cardiac arrest, ventricular fibrillation or ventricular arrhythmia symptoms (eg, fainting), will not be able to sit behind the wheel, until after 6 months without fainting. Some people may even lose consciousness with ICDs.


Require regular review of ICD. Over time, the device may cease to function properly due to various reasons:

  • Wires will be displaced or broken.
  • The battery will be faulty.
  • Heart disease will progress.
  • Other devices disrupt supply of electrical signals.

To check cardioverter defibrillator will need several times a year to visit the doctor. Some functions of the device can be checked by phone or by using a computer connected to the Internet.

The doctor may also recommend an electrocardiogram to detect changes in the electrical activity of the heart.

Battery Replacement

Battery life of the ICD - from five to seven years. The generator is replaced with a battery before the battery begins to discharge.

This operation is less complex than the original implantation cardioverter-defibrillator. You may need to replace the wires. The doctor will tell for sure whether to introduce a new device or change the wiring is necessary.


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