Falling Ejection Fraction - Is it Pacemaker Induced?
I am new to the club but have been watching from afar for a while now. You have been a fantastic help to me over recent months and are all incredibly generous with your time and the contributions you make to help people. It's always better to feel you are not on your own with this and it's taking me some time to accept my new wired status.
I had a dual chamber pacemaker fitted back in February 2021 after becoming extremely bradycardic and subsequently being diagnosed with AV node block. After some initial recovery I started to go downhill again and while I can function I am really struggling with exercise and anything which works the heart a bit more (climbing stairs, hills etc). This has had a major impact on my life as I previously loved taking long walks and hiking in the Welsh hills. My energy levels are very much lower, particularly in the morning. My hubby has has to be roped in for the school run as there is no way I could get up and out with the kids which I wouldn't have thought twice about before.
I have had an exercise stress test which showed that my ejection fraction has dropped to 45% (it was around 60% prior to surgery) and septal hypokinesis which becomes more exaggerated with exercise. My cardiologist seems to be taking a wait and see approach to my treatment but I'm not sure if this is the best strategy. I have spoken to a private cardiologist who agreed with my theory that I may have pacemaker induced cardiomyopathy. I am 100% paced and this can be linked to left ventricular issues for some people. My options would be upgrade to a biventricular device or left bundle pacing (the second option is not widely available here so I would probably need to go private if I could afford it).
Has anyone else had a pacemaker induced fall in ejection fraction and how have you approached it? Also, have any members had left bundle pacing and how successful has it been for them? Any advice would be much appreciated.