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About the Therapy
A pacemaker sends electrical impulses to restore the heart's rhythm. Today's pacemakers weigh about 28 grams, and are not much bigger than a Canadian Toonie.
Bradycardia is a slow rhythm, usually fewer than 60 beats per minute. At this rate, the heart is not able to pump enough oxygen-rich blood to your body during normal activity or exercise. As a result, you may feel dizzy or have chronic lack of energy, shortness of breath, or even fainting spells.
Pacemaker therapy is the most common way to treat bradycardia. A pacemaker helps restore the heart's rhythm. By sending tiny electrical signals to the heart to increase the heart rate, a pacemaker can relieve the symptoms of bradycardia.
A pacing system is made up of a pacemaker, one or two leads, and a programmer. The pacemaker sends tiny electrical impulses to pace the heart when its own rhythm is too slow or irregular. The pacing lead is an insulated wire that carries the impulse from the pacemaker to the heart to assist its beating.
All treatment and outcome results are specific to the individual patient, and will form part of your consultation with your healthcare professional.
Please consult your healthcare professional for a full list of benefits, indications, precautions, clinical results, and other important medical information that pertains to pacemaker therapy.
A pacemaker is designed to treat a slow heartbeat.
When people refer to a pacemaker, they are actually discussing a pacing system: a pacemaker, a pacing lead or leads, and a programmer.
Two parts are placed inside the body: the pacemaker and pacing lead.
The three parts of a pacing system work together to treat bradycardia (a heart rate that is too slow).
A pacing system increases the heart rate to meet the oxygen needs of the body.
If your doctor has advised you that a heart device (pacemaker) is the best course of treatment for your slow heartbeat (bradycardia), you may have a variety of questions and concerns.
Here are some common topics of interest to individuals considering an implantable heart device:
The procedure to implant a pacemaker is typically done under local anaesthesia. It does not require open-heart surgery, and most people go home within 24 hours.
Your doctor will provide more detailed information, but most individuals can expect to gradually return to their everyday activities shortly after the procedure.
Sometimes individuals wonder if there will be a noticeable bulge where the heart device was implanted. In general and if there have been no complications such as infection, you may notice a slight bump under your skin where your pacemaker is located.
An implantable heart device allows many individuals to participate in the activities they enjoy. Your doctor will have more information on activities you may need to avoid, but people typically resume their normal daily activities after full recovery from surgery, provided there have been no complications pre-, during or post-surgery.
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.