Beware Low Battery combined with Bad Lead
My Medtronic Revo pacemaker's battery finally got low enough to reach Recommended Replacement Time (RRT), and switch into its energy-conserving end of life mode. This end of life mode includes switching from dual-chamber pacing to just ventricular pacing.
Meanwhile, we knew for several years that my ventricular lead was bad. That wasn't an issue because my pacemaker didn't need to use it since I was (and am) almost 100% atrially paced.
But you can see the problem. When my pacemaker switched to ventricular pacing, it needed to use my ventricular lead, which didn't work. So I wasn't being paced, and my unpaced heart rate was very low.
I'll leave out the drama and just say that my doctor's organization got a new pacemaker into me pretty quickly.
It seems to me that my doctor's team should have anticipated this problem, and should have replaced my pacemaker before it reached Recommended Replacement Time.
The point of this post is that if you find yourself in this situation, you can bring it to the attention of your doctor. I was too clueless to see it coming.
You know you're wired when...
You have a maintenance schedule just like your car.
Life is finally better.