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Meditronic Combination Pacemaker/Defibrillator
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Meditronic Combination Pacemaker/Defibrillator


Posted by Beverly on June 26, 1999 at 12:09:09
I am sending this letter for my father . . .
My name is Russell Beachboard and I am going to be 80 years old this August.  I have had two major heart attacks and a quadruple bypass.  In Dec. 1995 I started to have fibrillations around 150 bpm.  Since this time I have had two combination pacemaker/defibrillators fail and am on my third.  Initially my heart stabilized between 70-86bpm but then jumped to 100 bpm.  I had electroversion; however, for the last 60 days my heart rate has been 90-95 bpm.  I am experiencing extreme tiredness and loss of stamina.  These are my questions.
1.  My pacemaker is a Medtronic combimation pacemaker/defibrillator.  My clinician has told me that the pacemaker portion establishes only the low rat at 70bpm but does not control the rate at anyother point.  I thought a pacemaker worked as a heart regulator, establishing a low to upper heart beat range and then controlling the heart at a level within these parameters?  Is this correct?
2.  What is the exact function of a combined pacemaker/defibrillator?
3.  What exactly is a dual pacemaker?  I understand that I have a problem  with the synchronization of my atria and ventricle.  Would this help?
    *Thank you for your great service*
Posted by CCF CARDIO MD - CRC on June 28, 1999 at 15:57:19
1. My pacemaker is a Medtronic combimation pacemaker/defibrillator. My clinician has told me that the pacemaker portion
establishes only the low rat at 70bpm but does not control the rate at anyother point. I thought a pacemaker worked as a heart
regulator, establishing a low to upper heart beat range and then controlling the heart at a level within these parameters? Is this
correct?
A: This is correct.  A pacemaker only functions if the heart gets too slow.  A defibrillator will be activated if the heart gets dangerously fast but otherwise  does not "put the breaks on" the heart rate.  Heart rate control for fast heart beats is usually done with medication.
2. What is the exact function of a combined pacemaker/defibrillator?
A: see above.
3. What exactly is a dual pacemaker? I understand that I have a problem with the synchronization of my atria and ventricle.
Would this help?
A: A dual pacemaker paces both the atrium and ventricle (upper and lower chambers of the heart).  This is retty much the standard now days and maintains a much better cardiac output.

Information provided here is for general educational purposes only. Only your doctor can provide specific diagnoses and treatments. If you would like to be seen at the Cleveland Clinic, please Call 1 - 800 - CCF - CARE for an appointment at Desk F15 with a cardiologist.


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