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Mediclinic News : 'Shocking' new heart implant device

Title

'Shocking' new heart implant device

Date

2016-11-23

Link

News Description

CAPE ARGUS A new device that can be placed under the skin without a single wire touching the heart is set to revolutionise the treatment of abnormal heart arrhythmia and sudden cardiac arrest. Jan Wiehman, 55, of Welgemoed yesterday became the first patient in Africa to be implanted with a new generation, lifesaving shock device known as the emblem subcutaneous cardioverter defibrillator (S-ICD). Unlike traditional implantable defibrillators which has up to three leads that are attached to the heart, the new device, which is widely used in First World countries, does not require leads in the venous system. The device only has one lead that sits under the skin and on top of the breastbone, and is connected to veins or heart. Dr Razeen Gopal, cardiac electrophysiologist, who implanted the device at Mediclinic Panorama, said while the traditional cardioverter defibrillator implantation was associated with complications such as adhesion to the veins and heart muscle, including the risk of systemic infection (septicemia), the new device was considered less risky as it didn't have the leads or tubes connected to the heart. "This is an important step forward because the leads we use traditionally can be a pathway for bugs, which can end up in the heart. "In the original system the leads can grow into the body and come part of the veins of the heart muscle. "Treating infection or complication of the leads can be complex as we have to perform lead extraction to get the infected leads out. There is also no risk for heart perforation," he said. Gopal said the new procedure was good news for cardiac patients, especially young patients who required shock therapy due to increased risk of cardiac arrest caused by congenital heart syndromes. It is also useful for patients who experienced abnormal heart arrhythmia because of previous heart attacks.
Created at 2016/11/29 11:08 AM by Mediclinic
Last modified at 2016/11/29 11:08 AM by Mediclinic