Cancer surviour undergoes leadless pacemaker implant

Conventional pacemakers are surgically placed under the skin of the patient with the help of wires stretching from veins on the arms to the heart, which can further cause complications. (Image for representation)

A 74-year-old woman, who is a cancer surviour, underwent the first leadless pacemaker implant in a city hospital recently. Unlike the traditional pacemaker, the leadless pacemaker was directly placed inside the patient's heart without surgery through the femoral vein. The woman, who also suffers from morbid obesity, had transient loss of consciousness (syncope) due to intermittent high grade electrical heart block.

Explaining the procedure, Dr Shashidhar, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist and Electrophysiologist at Fortis Hospitals said that a traditional pacemaker could not be used as it was difficult in this case. "The veins of upper arms where the traditional pacemakers are generally implanted were blocked due to the chemotherapy cycles, which the patient received for her breast cancer treatment in the past. Therefore, we used the leadless pacemaker for this patient," he said.

“Compared to the traditional pacemaker which costs around Rs 1.5 lakh, the leadless pacemaker costs close to Rs 10 lakh. Moreover, this technology was introduced just 2 years ago. The patient withstood the procedure well and did not experience any unconsciousness post implant. In comparison to a conventional pacemaker, the new-age leadless pacemaker eliminates the need for a surgical pocket, there is no visible pacemaker device under a patient's chest skin, no incision scar on the chest, no connector wires or lead, and no restrictions on any daily activities.“ added Dr Shashidhar.

Conventional pacemakers are surgically placed under the skin of the patient with the help of wires stretching from veins on the arms to the heart, which can further cause complications. Whereas in the leadless pacemaker, the patient does not experience any discomfort, infections, device complications or dysfunction. The conventional pacemakers weighs about 30 to 40 gm whereas the leadless pacemaker weighs only 2 gm with 0.8 cc volume. The battery life of the pacemaker is same as that of a conventional pacemaker which is around 7 to 8 years.

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Cancer surviour undergoes leadless pacemaker implant

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