ICD

TICD of Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) is a device usually used to treat the condition called Arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats). It is a small battery-powered device which can be implanted in the chest or abdomen. The device works using electrical pulses or shocks. It has various uses other than treating Arrhythmias:

  • It prevents sudden death due to Sustained Ventricular Tachycardia or Fibrillation.
  • IT prevents cardiac arrest in high-risk patients.

An Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator detects and stops abnormal heart beats or arrhythmias. It works by monitoring the heartbeat continuously and delivering extra beats or electrical shocks if necessary. ICD and pacemaker are two different devices. ICD detects when the heart beats go abnormal and sends electrical pulses to the heart in order to regulate the abnormal heartbeat. ICD is commonly programmed for these three therapies:

  • Low-energy pacing therapy
  • Cardioversion therapy
  • Defibrillation therapy

An ICD may be required for a patient with:

  • A weak heart due to coronary artery disease and heart attack.
  • A heart condition that causes abnormal heart muscle, it can be either enlarged or thickened heart muscle.
  • An inherited heart defect that causes abnormal heartbeat.

ICD implant process will have a few and rare risks. Certain common risks may include:

  • Infection
  • Allergic reaction to the medications
  • Swelling, bruising or bleeding
  • Damage to the vein

In order to check whether the patient needs an ICD, the doctor will suggest diagnostic tests such as:

  • ECG.
  • Echocardiography.
  • Electrophysiology Study.
  • Event recorder.
  • Holter monitoring.

The procedure of implanting the device may take about 1-3 hours of time. The surgery is done with the help of a flexible, insulated wire called lead. It will be inserted into a major vein near the collarbone. The x-ray images of the heart will help guide the procedure. One edge of the leads will be attached to the ventricles, while the other edge is attached to the shock generator. This will be implanted under the skin beneath the collarbone.