Heart Disease Expert Forum
Seniors life after pacemaker
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Avatar universal
Seniors life after pacemaker
I hesitate to ask this question as I don't want to seem morbid but it is a concern for us.  My mother experienced a heart attack 4 weeks ago at the age of 82.  2 attempts at angioplasty were unsuccessful due to the area of her blockage.  After hoping the heart would work correct the problem with the aid of meds, she had 5 more heart attacks - luckily while still in the Heart Institute.  The last one was severe though and they did an emergency pacemaker implantation - something which they were hoping to avoid.  She is recovering nicely, although she is still in the hospital in geraitric assessment and is depressed and confused sometimes. (understandable).  My question is her future.  Will the pacemaker keep her heart going when perhaps it shouldn't?  We have had several close friends and family members suffer long drawn out illnesses resulting in death and I don't want that to happen to her.  I don't want to lose her any way but that is not reality, I certainly don't want her to suffer when those heart attacks might just have been her body telling her it was time to join her other loved ones.  We will enjoy the time we have left with her but it would be comforting to know that it was the right thing to do and not the selfish thing.
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74076 tn?1189759432
Hello,

Will the pacemaker keep her heart going when perhaps it shouldn't?

You don't need to worry about this.  Pacemakers improve quality of life and rarely prolong life.  When the heart wants to stop, it usually does.  Your concerns are very reasonble, but I do not think you need to worry about the pacemaker prolonging life when it shouldn't.

I hope this answers your question and I hope your mom is well soon.
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137307 tn?1330977597
My prayers are with you, your mother and your family during this difficult time.  I have been there and I know the desire for someone to give you the answers you so desperately seek.  I hope the doctors here are able to give you some sort of comfort.
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Avatar universal
Thank you - both of you.  Your answer helps with the guilt and the comments from both of you gave me a little comfort.  She has always been "small but mighty" and doesn't give up easily. (and she calls me stubborn :) )
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Avatar universal
That is very sweet. I know what you mean. We've been there with my grandmother, though not about her heart. You would give anything to keep them by your side forever, but you would never want to see them suffer.
You're doing the right thing. I hope she keeps recovering nicely. And what matters most is that, whatever happens, she knows she has the love and support of her loved ones. That will make a huge difference.

Fran
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Avatar universal
A related discussion, Sleeping in the elderly was started.
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