What is a ICD
An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is indeed a small device placed in the chest to monitor and regulate heart rhythms. It is primarily used to treat two life-threatening conditions: ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation.
Loading the player...Indications for ICD's and Implantation Technique <p><a href="https://heartfailurenow.com/local/cardiologist-1">Cardiologist</a><a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/practitioner-type/cardiologist">-</a>Electrophysiologist, talks about when<a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/videos/indications-for-icds-and-implantation-technique"> ICD's</a> are indicated and what the implant process involves.</p>
Loading the player...Living with an ICD <p><a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/practitioner-type/electrophysiologists">Cardiologist-Electrophysiologist</a>, talks about living with an ICD implant.</p>
Cardiologist-Electrophysiologist, talks about living with an ICD implant.
Loading the player...Subcutaneous Defibrillators <p><a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/practitioner-type/electrophysiologists">Electrophysiologist </a>and <a href="https://www.healthchoicesfirst.com/practitioner-type/nurse">Registered Nurse,</a> talks about Subcutaneous Defibrillators and the potential benefits they offer.</p>
Indications for ICD's and Implantation Technique
An implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) is a battery-powered medical device that is used to monitor and treat abnormal heart rhythms, specifically life-threatening arrhythmias such as ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia. It is typically implanted under the skin in the chest area, near the collarbone, and connected to the heart using one or more thin wires called leads.
The ICD continuously monitors the heart's electrical activity and can deliver an electric shock to restore a normal heart rhythm if it detects a dangerous arrhythmia. The leads are placed within the heart to sense the electrical signals and deliver the necessary therapy when required. The device contains a battery that powers its functions, including monitoring, sensing, and delivering therapy when necessary.
ICDs are commonly used in individuals who are at high risk of sudden cardiac arrest due to a history of arrhythmias, heart disease, or certain genetic conditions. The device plays a crucial role in preventing sudden cardiac death by quickly correcting life-threatening arrhythmias and restoring a normal heart rhythm.
So the device and the lead continuously monitor the heartbeat of the patient. If the device detects an abnormal, serious and dangerous heartbeat, it will identify it and correct it. It will correct it either by what we call overdrive pacing, to pace faster than the abnormal rhythm, which is painless. And if that doesn’t work, or that is not appropriate, the patient will receive a shock, that will immediately correct that abnormal and dangerous heart rhythm. The majority of defibrillators also have a pacemaker function that will correct a slow heart rhythm.
A defibrillator, also known as an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD), is used to prevent sudden cardiac death by treating life-threatening arrhythmias, particularly ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation. There are two main categories for implanting defibrillators: primary prevention and secondary prevention.
In secondary prevention, the ICD is implanted in patients who have already survived a serious ventricular arrhythmia. The purpose of the device is to prevent future episodes of potentially fatal arrhythmias. On the other hand, primary prevention involves implanting defibrillators in patients who are at high risk of developing a serious ventricular arrhythmia, even though they haven't experienced one yet. This is often the case for patients who have suffered damage to their ventricles due to a heart attack.
The surgical implant procedure for an ICD typically involves the following steps:
Anesthesia: The procedure is usually performed under local anesthesia, with the patient being conscious during the surgery. In some cases, general anesthesia may be required.
Incision: A small incision, usually two to three inches long, is made in the skin, typically below the left collarbone. This incision creates a pocket or pouch where the ICD device will be placed.
Lead placement: The ICD is connected to the heart through leads, which are thin, insulated wires. The leads are inserted into a vein in the chest and guided to the heart using X-ray imaging. The number of leads can vary, with some ICDs having one lead in the right ventricle, others having a second lead in the right atrium, and some even having a third lead on the outer surface of the left ventricle to improve heart function in certain cases.
Subcutaneous ICD: In recent years, a type of ICD known as a subcutaneous ICD has been developed. This device does not have leads inside the heart. Instead, it is implanted under the skin, typically under the armpit, and the lead runs under the skin and across the sternum. Subcutaneous ICDs are usually used in patients who have abnormalities or defects in the veins inside the chest.
After the ICD is implanted, the device continuously monitors the heart's rhythm. If a dangerous arrhythmia is detected, it delivers an electric shock to restore the heart's normal rhythm. Additionally, ICDs have various programmable features and can store data about the heart's activity, which can be later reviewed by the healthcare provider.
It's important to note that the specific details of the implant procedure may vary depending on the individual patient and the type of ICD being used. The procedure is typically performed by a cardiologist or an electrophysiologist with expertise in cardiac devices.
Overall, implantation of an ICD will take between one to two hours. Patients will stay in the hospital for one to two days. We also explain to the patient that there are some risks. Complications are not common, overall the risk is about 3 to 5 percent, which includes the risk of infection, any time we open the skin. The risk of edema, or collection of blood inside the pouch, is the most frequent risk associated with the ICD procedure. Often seeing a local family physician or a pharmacist in conjunction with a registered dietitian, or a local athletic therapist is a great option to take control of dehydration. In conjunction with healthy eating, exercise, and Smart Food Now If you have any more questions, please call your doctor or your cardiologist, and in some cases, you will need to speak with medical personnel of the defibrillator clinic.
Ventricular tachycardia refers to a rapid heartbeat originating from the heart's ventricles, while ventricular fibrillation is a chaotic and irregular heartbeat that prevents the heart from effectively pumping blood. Both conditions can be very dangerous and may lead to sudden cardiac arrest.
The ICD constantly monitors the heart's electrical activity. If it detects an abnormal heart rhythm, it can deliver electrical shocks or pacing pulses to restore a normal rhythm. These electrical interventions can stop the abnormal rhythm and prevent life-threatening complications.
It's worth noting that an ICD differs from a pacemaker, although they are both implantable devices used to manage heart rhythm abnormalities. While an ICD is primarily focused on detecting and treating fast or irregular heart rhythms, a pacemaker is typically used to manage slow heart rhythms or heart block by providing regular electrical impulses to stimulate the heart's contractions.
Both ICDs and pacemakers have similar implantation procedures and use wires, known as leads, to connect to the heart. However, the specific functions and capabilities of these devices differ to cater to different types of heart rhythm disorders.