Repair/Replace Leads

Got my PM in March 2019. Tech detected problem with top lead signal in June 2020. Surgery in August found one lead dangling (disconnected) and second lead almost disconnected. Generator was O.K. Surgeon replaced one lead and reconnected both leads in new locations. My energy level has improved noticeably. Surgeon claimed two attach screws may not have been torqued adequately/correctly on original procedure. Seems to be some 'trick' to correctly attach these leads.


4 Comments

Someone screwed up big-time

by AgentX86 - 2020-08-14 17:12:35

There's no "trick". Any doctor qualified to be cutting you open for a pacemaker implant should know what they're doing. Pacemakers come with a torque-wrench (screwdriver, actually) to tighten these screws. My guess is that this step was forgotten. Some would say this was malpractice. Of course, I'd never say such a thing.

making it stick

by Tracey_E - 2020-08-14 22:51:17

It's a bit of a leap to assume the surgeon is at fault and it's malpractice. Yes, it's possible. It's also possible the heart wall didn't like the type of lead, or that the heart is shaped so that it was difficult to get a good spot, or that we overdid it while healing and knocked them loose, or just plain bad luck. Sometimes things go wrong and no one is at fault. 

Misunderstanding

by AgentX86 - 2020-08-14 23:48:35

I thought we were talking about the screws on the generator itself.  The leads screw into the heart wall but aren't generally called "screws" are they?

Anyway, there is two ways to read this, I guess.

I read the sentence "Surgeon claimed two attach screws may not have been torqued adequately" as the torque screws on the generator. To me, that meant a torque-wrench setting wasn't right. And "one lead dangling (disconnected) and second lead almost disconnected. Generator was O.K." the generator being part of the discussion meant that this was the end under discussion.

On the other hand, '"Surgeon replaced one lead and reconnected both leads in new locations." (emphasis mine) implies that it was the heart end.

Bottom line, I can now see that this could be interpreted either away.  If the leads came loose in the heart, I agree with you.  It's not at all likely to be malpractice. S* happens.  If the screws on the generator came loose, I can't see it any other way.  There is no way this should ever happen.

Hope that clears up my reasoning anyway.

I also read it as

by dwelch - 2020-08-15 21:17:35

I also read it as the leads were not secured in the pacer, which means find a new doc/surgeon.  Not a tricky thing for someone who does this for a living.

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