Lead shorted out

Hi everyone hope all is doing well. My electrophysiologist’s nurse called me to make an appt. seems my transmitter has been showing somethings wrong with one of my leads, apparently one has shorted out. Has anyone experienced this? What happens now? I have tried to find out about this online but there’s really no real info out there that I am finding. Can anyone help a girl out here? Thank you




by barnet38 - 2019-08-05 00:17:32

One year ago, I had a lead that was malfunctioning and I was called into the hospital after sending a report through my Medtronic app.  It turned out that the pacemaker technician was able to bypass the malfunctioning piece of the lead by switching from bipolar to unipolar mode.  I was glad that I didn’t need an emergency surgery.  My leads are over 20 years old and will need to be replaced, but they are functioning well in unipolar mode for now. I have a background rhythm so my heartrate will just drop to the low 40s if there’s another unexpected issue.  I hope your lead can be fixed without surgery!

Malfunctioning lead

by AgentX86 - 2019-08-05 08:37:53

In this case, they'll usually cap off the bad lead and insert another. If there isn't enough room in the vein, they'll have to extract the old lead first. You should go to specialist who deals with lead extraction - someone who has done several hundred of these procedures. You'll probably have to travel to a major city to find a surgeon who is truly competent in this highly specialized procedure. It really is a big deal.

malfunctioning lead

by sheilaw - 2019-08-06 10:14:50

One of my leads malfunctioned and I had it replaced along with the pacemaker one month ago.  The lead seems to be functioning properly but the area around the pacemaker is still sore and I requently feel "aches" in the shoulder and upper arm area.  Good luck. Hopefully there is room in the vein to enable insertion of a new lead without extraction.


Malfunctioning lead

by IPGENG12 - 2019-08-07 20:01:05

I agree with AgentX86- a malfunctioning lead really is a big deal,  especially if the recommendation is to remove it.  Lead extractions can be very tricky- I had my first left ventricular lead taken out 18 months ago- it broke twice during the extract procedure,  requiring an interventional radiologist to go fish the first piece out of my vasculature.  The second piece was small and they decided to just leave it in there, embeddded in a cardiac vein wall.  This is why lead extractions typically get done in a dual electrophysiology / Open heart surgery room- in case it goes really bad and they need to perform a more invasive procedure to get the lead out or fix collateral damage.  So,  if a lead extraction is needed,  get it done by somebody with lots of experience!  If you are fortunate, you won't need an extraction.  They will just cap the lead and put a fresh one in, which is straightforward.  Good luck and hope they get it fixed quckly.

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