• by Ajay
  • 2008-12-06 01:12:53
  • ICDs


I got a ICD + PAcemaker (Combo) device 2 months back. Everything went well for the initial 2 weeks and slowly i developed loss of breath. I had discussions with my doctor and per his advise my medicine for pumping the heart and for BP ( Medicine Cardace) was increased to 2.5 mg BD. It helped me initially with no episodes of breathlessness but again I am developing the same problem. My doctor advises taking Lasix during these episodes however I need advise from all who have got this device fitted as to whether they have faced any such problem and what should I be doing next. I am getting very depressed now as have not got any concrete answers from my Doc.


Shortness Of Breath

by Pookie - 2008-12-06 08:12:46

Hi Ajay.

I too have had quite a few episodes of shortness of breath ever since I've had my pacemaker. The doctors cannot come up with an answer. It's been 4 years for me now and yes it tends to get me down from time to time. I've asked the pacer techs if there is anything on my pacemaker settings that could be changed to help, but according to them, there isn't. Just walking up 14 steps has me needing to sit down when I finally reach the top. I was NEVER like that before this pacemaker.

One day I will find the answer as I am a determined type of person. Heck, I'm only 46 and I hate feeling like I'm 99. It's not fair, but then again....what is these days?

We have to keep our chins up and keep our eyes and minds focused on getting our medical problems and questions addressed. Life is way too short to be feeling this badly.

Good luck and keep us posted.



by Tracey_E - 2008-12-06 10:12:36

Why did you get the icd in the first place and what does he think is causing the sob? I had a lot of shortness of breath when I first got my pm and it was just a matter of tweaking the pm settings. It all depends on why you need it to start with, though.


by ElectricFrank - 2008-12-06 11:12:39

Have you been getting a copy of the PM interrogation report each time they check it. If not be sure to at the next one.

It would help to know the following:
Upper Limit
Lower Limit
Pacemaker Mode
Rate Response Off or On.

With these some of us here may be able to help you understand what is happening.


Details for Frank

by Ajay112 - 2008-12-07 02:12:47

Thanks all for replying back. Frank here are the details:

Mode DDD
LR 50 ppm
UR 130 ppm
AS-VP 99.8%
V-V delay 50ms

Please let me know if you would need more details


by ElectricFrank - 2008-12-08 01:12:49

The meaning of the readings are:
Mode DDD senses the normal atrial rhythm and uses it to pace the ventricles. Rate response is OFF in this mode. It is most commonly used for AV block.

LR 50 is the lower limit of 50 bpm. If the HR drops below the limit the pacer takes over and provides ventricular pacing on its own.

PR 130 is the upper limit of 130 bpm. If the HR exceeds this limit the pacer skips beats to keep the average HR below it. This is a rough way to enforce a limit and can produce various symptoms.

AS-VP 99.8% is the percentage time that the pacer is sensing the atrium and pacing the ventricles. Yours is essentially pacing 100%, which would again indicate a complete AV block.

I'm not sure about the V-V delay. It likely means ventricle to ventricle delay.

What are you doing when you experience the loss of breath. Are you active enough to hit the 130 BPM limit? This is something I got into shortly after getting a pacer for AV block. My upper limit was set at 120 and feeling so much better after the pacer it didn't take me long to become active enough to hit the limit. I insisted that they up the limits to 140 and then to 150.

The next time you feel the breathing problem take your pulse. Not only measure the rate, but see if it is irregular. Also, keep in mind that the shortness of breath that so many of us feel at times is really not limited breathing. It is usually a natural response to anxiety. So when I get the feeling of a tight chest and difficulty breathing, I deliberately start taking slow deep breaths. It is not only relaxing, but also provides needed oxygen to our organism. I call it "longness of breath". I have never found a time when I couldn't take a long deep breath once I decided to.


You know you're wired when...

Bad hair days can be blamed on your device shorting out.

Member Quotes

A properly implanted and adjusted pacemaker will not even be noticeable after you get over the surgery.