In a couple of weeks I will undergo a procedure to totally destroy my Sinus Node, and will receive a pace maker. How effective is this? How great is the risk that the pacemaker will fail, and I will die? What is the recover period?
I have had tach all my life and don't know what it is like to live without it. It is now a constant, and I am virtually bedridden. My docs decided this was the only way to deal with my issue, after an EP study and aborted the ablation procedure. I have no fear, and look forward to finally living a more normal life for the first time in 56 years, but, my husband has concerns.
Pacemakers are very effective and very reliable, but of course they are not as good as the native pacemaker. The pacer has to be followed by your doctor to make sure that the leads and the battery are working well. With the current technology a lot of this can be done from home with the use of your telephone. Because it is the sinus node that is getting ablated, the other pacermaker cells located in the AV node would be able to pick up the slack if necessary in case the artificial pacemaker fails. We typically don't do this unless it is there really are no other options. Most of the time we can do a sinus node modification procedure (an ablation) where the sinus node gets modified. The advantage of this is that you don't need any artificial pacemakers. The other thing that you have to keep in mind is that if you are a young person, you will probably need more than one pacer in your lifetime. Also, you will probably need more than one set of leads. Changing a pacemaker isn't a bid deal. Replacing the leads is. This is why I think that you should really make sure that there are no other options such as maybe another consultation regarding a potential reablation.
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