Implantation of Leadless Pacemakers
How the heart works?
The heart is a muscular organ about the size of your fist. It is positioned slightly to the left of the centre of the chest. One of the main functions of the heart is to pump blood through the blood vessels (arteries and veins) and deliver oxygen and nutrients and carries away unwanted waste products. The heart can beat up to 100,000 times a day.
Heart rate is the number of heartbeats in one minute. The normal heart rate is between 60 and 100 beats in one minute, although each person’s heart rate is slightly different. Heart rhythm is how regular the pattern of your heartbeat is. Normal regular heart rhythm is known as sinus rhythm.
Pacemakers are implanted to help control your heartbeat. Pacemakers are used to correct a slow or irregular heartbeat or, even to help treat heart failure.
A regular pacemaker comprises two parts:
- Pulse generator – which holds the battery and electrical circuits.
- Leads (electrodes). One to three flexible, insulated wires are each placed in a chamber of the heart. These electrodes deliver the electrical pulses to adjust your heart rate.
The leadless pacemaker is a simple pacemaker that is used for patients that need only a single chamber in the heart paced. It is a very basic pacemaker without any leads but once in place should last up to 10 years. This type of pacemaker is only suitable for a small number of patients.
How is Micra placed into my heart?
The procedure is similar to a cardiac catheterisation. The Cardiologist will insert a plastic catheter into a vein in your top of the leg and use the catheter to move Micra pacemaker into the right ventricle of your heart. The catheter is then removed.