Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator (ICDS)
The Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator (ICD) is a device that’s mall in size,and can be placed in a patient’s chest to reduce the risk of death in case the ventricles (lower chambers) of the heart get into a dangerous rhythm or go into cardiac arrest. The ICDs detect and treat heart arrhythmias, continuously monitoring the heartbeat and delivering electrical pulses when necessary to restore the normal rhythm of the heart.
ICDs are useful for patients who
- Have a history of heart attacks or coronary artery diseases that have weakened the heart
- Have heart conditions that can result in abnormal heart muscle, such as enlarged or thickened heart muscles
- Have a hereditary defect that causes abnormal heartbeats. Such conditions may include conditions like long QT syndrome, which causes ventricular fibrillation and can even lead to death withoutany symptoms or signs of heart problems
- Have other rare conditions
Why is it used?
An ICD can be used to shock the patient’s heart in case it discovers irregular heartbeats. This shock is administered automatically and internally. Other functions of the ICD may include:
- Antitachycardia:in case of an abnormally fast heart rate, the ICD delivers low-energy impulses to stimulate the heart to beat normally.
- Pacemaker: The modern ICDs can also double as pacemakers to enable the regular beating of the heart.
- Recording heart activity: The ICD also records information about any variations in the heart’s electrical activity and rhythm.
- Allergic reaction
- Swelling, bleeding or bruising
- Vein damage where the ICD leads are placed
- Bleeding around the heart
- Blood leaking through the heart valve
- Collapsed lung
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