Post pacemaker surgery

My mother had a PM implant 1 week ago. She was diagnosed with bradycardia i.e. slow heart rate and to keep her heart beating over 60 bpm a dual chamber PM was implanted. Today she was walking at a medium pace and she felt a little breathless, I took her heart rate and it showed 49 . I told her to relax and sit and after about 10 seconds i took the bpm and it was 94. She felt better. Is it common to experience this initially? Did anyone else had this problem?



by Tracey_E - 2022-12-08 09:25:01

I responded to your private message. When in doubt, give her doctor a call. 

How did you get 49? Many monitors are not accurate so counting manually is best. Even that isn't always accurate, there can be small beats between the strong beats that we miss. Unless a lead is dislodged, it's more likely the count was off than her rate was that far below 60. 

It’s early in recovery

by Lavender - 2022-12-08 09:42:16

I too wondered about the low reading because that is what the pacemakers do-keep the rate from dropping. If mom has a monitor and anything was wrong, she would be notified. If she doesn't have one-I would report to the doctor. However it honestly sounds like she's just weak and early in healing. 

I had two lightheaded spells after getting my pacemaker and found out that it was from not drinking enough water. I was told by the cardiac nurse that we need more water now. The heart is beating more efficiently and we need more than ever. Make sure mom is drinking water often. 

You are a very good daughter for being so diligent in watching over your mom! 🌺

Thank you

by Shagunsharma - 2022-12-08 10:42:47

Thankyou for that last affirmation of being a good daughter i honestly needed to hear it today, I just feel like I am not doing enough. That was just one incident where I noticed it to be 49 when she was walking and as soon as she settled down and I monitored again the rate was 100. After that it hasn't gone down than 60bpm. Is it possible that the leads can be dislodged? She hasn't literally lift her hand up and neither is she doing any other work.


by Tracey_E - 2022-12-08 10:59:45

Odds of leads being dislodged are small. And if they do by chance get dislodged, it's rarely because of anything we did. It's more often because the heart didn't like it, it wasn't in a good spot, the structure of the heart itself. Some doctors don't even do arm restrictions anymore because studies have shown patients without restrictions have the same chance of dislodging leads as those with traditional restrictions 

Not using the arm at all will lead to much bigger problems down the road. With the exception of not raising the arm overhead, she should try to use the arm normally so her shoulder doesn't freeze.

Unless she is symptomatic, try not to be in the habit of checking her rate all the time. Trust the pacer to do its job. I know that's easier said than done!  But the heart has a lot of perfectly normal ups and downs, and watching it too closely will make us crazy. 


Heart Rate

by Stache - 2022-12-11 22:23:18

I have a dual chamber pacer that paces 100% of the time for me at 60 PBM.  Before my heart rate was 31 BPM,  However, my heart has a couple of large chambers and pumps a large volume of blood each beat and my valves do not leak.  I ride a bicycle a lot and my pacer reacts to my bike riding by increasing to around 84 BPM.  But it has never dropped below 60 BPM at the lowest level set.  I check my O2 with my finger pulse oximeter against my smartphone Samsung Health app and they read almost the same each time.  I check heart rate and O2 reading at least twice a day.

Your pacer should be set to a level of BPM and it should not drop below that is what I am told and have read.  You have to trust the device.

You know you're wired when...

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