For what concerns bradychardias, in some cases it is compulsory to implant a pacemaker as a definitive measure to restore the normal heart rate values. The traditional device makes use of percutaneous electrocatheters implanted in the heart intravenously and connected to a generator usually placed under left clavicle.
A new generation of pacemaker was born for many patients requiring an implant, that is wireless pacemaker. It has proved to be safe and successfull in stimulating the heart for more than 10 years. A small capsule is inserted into the right side of the heart without surgery but via catheter through the femoral vein and a wireless generator is attached as well. Besides being invisible from the outside, they are used to reduce the possibility of infections. Moreover, being wireless devices, they are very practical. At the moment only few hospitals, among which there is Fondazione Poliambulanza, are entitled to perform that innovative operation.
Both traditional and wireless pacemakers may undergo a magnetic resonance under certain conditions specified by the radiologist.
A heart rate exceeding the normal resting rate may be caused by a ventricular tachycardia, a cardiomyopathy or a heart attack. In all those cases it is recommended to implant an automated external defibrillator to stop the arrhythmia and allow the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm. There are several possibilities depending on the patient’s original disease, for example the doctor can choose between a traditional implant through electrocatheters inserted into the heart, or a subcutaneous device without introducing electrocatheter into the vein.
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