Surgical cardiac devices, such as implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) and pacemakers, play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy heart rhythm for countless individuals. At the heart of these devices are two key components: an array of leads and a pulse generator.
Leads are specialised wires that effectively convey energy from the device to the heart muscle. They are designed to be permanently affixed to the heart. However, certain scenarios may necessitate their removal, such as in the event of infection or damaged leads. This procedure is referred to as pacemaker lead extraction and involves the careful and strategic removal of one or more leads from inside the heart.
Lead extraction is a complex and nuanced procedure. One of the main challenges encountered during this process is the traversal through the tough scar tissue that secures the leads in place. When it comes to procedures as intricate as lead extraction, entrusting your health to an experienced specialist is paramount. With an impressive track record and a deep-rooted passion for cardiac health, Dr Karthigesan exemplifies expertise and dedication in the field of cardiac lead extraction. Opt for the best care for your heart. Book an appointment today!
Lead extraction from cardiac devices, such as pacemakers or ICDs, often becomes indispensable due to several factors. Predominantly, infection of the device is the leading cause of lead extraction. Should any part of the ICD or pacemaker harbour bacterial infection, either on the lead or around the device itself, it becomes imperative to perform an extraction. The infection may cause the device to erode through the skin, making extraction the only effective way to eliminate the infection completely. Despite the use of antibiotics for temporary suppression, the body cannot fully eradicate the infection until all artificial material has been removed.
Another primary cause of lead extraction pertains to their functionality. Leads might necessitate removal if they are not functioning optimally or if they are deemed unnecessary. Broken leads, often resulting from wire fractures, also significantly contribute to the need for extraction. In some instances, the implanting physician may decide to keep the broken lead inside the heart while placing a new one adjacent to it. However, due to spatial constraints, this may not always be feasible. In younger patients, who are likely to require additional leads at some point in the future, elective lead removal might be preferred, given that extraction becomes more challenging over time.
Before undergoing a lead extraction procedure for your pacemaker or defibrillator, an extensive evaluation process is typically carried out. This involves a series of diagnostic tests:
The advantages of undertaking a lead extraction procedure are manifold and heavily depend on your individual health situation. Here's how the procedure can enhance your cardiac health: