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Heart Devices 101: Guide to the Tools That Keep You Ticking

Posted 3 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, April 2, 2017 – Pacemakers, defibrillators and other medical devices have saved the lives of millions of people worldwide. Someone you know probably has received one of these heart-health enhancers, although not all have become household words. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration evaluates and regulates these and other medical devices in the United States. Below, the agency provides a brief glossary of terms that might come in handy when a doctor recommends a cardiac tool: Heart pacemakers: These small, battery-powered devices are implanted in the body. They deliver an electric shock to restore normal heart rhythm when the heart beats too slowly. Implantable cardioverter defibrillators: These deliver a shock to restore normal heart rhythm when the heart beats too fast. Automated external defibrillators: These portable, automatic devices are found in many public locations. ... Read more

Related support groups: Atrial Fibrillation, Heart Disease, Heart Attack, Arrhythmia, Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure, Angina, Tachyarrhythmia, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Prevention of Thromboembolism in Atrial Fibrillation, Prosthetic Heart Valves, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Myocardial Infarction, Mitral Valve Prolapse, Ventricular Tachycardia, Prosthetic Heart Valves - Mechanical Valves, Atrial Flutter, Left Ventricular Dysfunction, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), Mitral Insufficiency

Could a Therapy for Irregular Heartbeat Harm the Brain?

Posted 24 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 24, 2017 – Catheter ablation is a common treatment for a form of irregular heartbeat known as premature ventricular contractions. Now, a small new study suggests the approach may put some patients at risk for brain injury. The findings are preliminary, but are "relevant to a large number of patients undergoing this procedure," study senior author Dr. Gregory Marcus said in a news release from the University of California, San Francisco. The study suggests that the procedure may help encourage the formation of brain lesions. Marcus, who directs clinical research at UCSF's department of cardiology, said he hopes the research "will inspire many studies to understand the meaning of and how to mitigate these lesions." The study included 18 patients who underwent catheter ablation for premature ventricular contractions (PVCs) – a type of abnormal heartbeat originating in a ... Read more

Related support groups: Bleeding Disorder, Arrhythmia, Diagnosis and Investigation, Brain Anomalies incl Congenital, Coagulation Defects and Disorders, Head Imaging, Premature Ventricular Depolarizations

Spare Dying Patients Electric Shocks From Heart Device, Docs Say

Posted 24 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 24, 2016 – Dying patients with an implantable heart defibrillator don't know the device can be turned off so that it doesn't give them painful shocks during their last days of life, researchers report. Implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) are surgically implanted in people with certain heart conditions. They deliver a shock to restore normal heart rhythm when they detect a potentially deadly abnormal rhythm. Doctors are encouraged to inform patients with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator about the benefits of deactivating the device when they are near death. But research shows that up to 31 percent of people with an ICD receive shocks in their final days. Two new studies provide further proof that many doctors aren't following the Heart Rhythm Society and European Society of Cardiology recommendations. A Spanish study of 243 patients with implantable ... Read more

Related support groups: Arrhythmia, Tachyarrhythmia, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Cardiac Arrhythmia, Ventricular Tachycardia, Bradyarrhythmia, Ventricular Fibrillation, Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome, Ventricular Arrhythmia, Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia, AV Heart Block, Cardiovascular Conditions and Disorders, Atrial Tachycardia, Sinus Node Dysfunction, Premature Atrial Depolarizations, Paroxysmal Junctional Tachycardia, Premature Ventricular Depolarizations

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