My Battery Replacement
I had a Medtronic (ADDR model) placed in 2008 and it was replaced last October with a W1DR01. For all of 2018, every month, I sent a reading to the pacemaker lab at my clinic. They said it was saying I had a month left! That seemed contradictory to me that for a year the forecast is a month left, but never mind. When it went into conservation mode, and I could see from a little experimentation that it was giving me a steady 65 bpm, I knew it was replacement time.
What bugs me is what happened next. It was 7pm, the lab was not staffed at that time. I was told to go to the ER. The doctors on the floor ignored what I told them. They claim they had to confirm with my cardiologists and admitted me. Someone ordered and echo, they did tests for a heart attack (I am in good health other than the bradycardia), kept me for a night's worth of bills ($11K, most of which insurance paid). Under the 'pretense' , had to be, or they were ignorant that they were investigating all possible causes.
The interrogation of the device was not done till the next day, and it was one of these same doctors who had it done. I was sent home to wait 3 days for a replacement. I do have a basal rate of 40 bpm if the pacemaker failed completely and back in 2008 before I got the pacemaker I know I could get my natural conduction to give me 90 bpm if I walked fast.
Is this not an egregious attempt at trying to fatten the revenue cow? I see some of the respondents here went straight to the operating room to get theirs replaced. There was no surprise here when it failed. I am appealing the charges made for "observation". Nearly $2K billed for 5 visits in 10 hours.
When I asked my cardio who did the placement and replacement he shrugged his shoulders and said "you know those Hospitalists....." (name of the clinic that provides doctors for the floor). All of them came in and asked me the same damn stupid questions... does your tummy hurt etc. Could they not read the record of the previous doctor and confirm if needed? For that they expect $352 per visit.
Comments please on what should be the procedure when a replacement is needed. My cardio now says that with the next one I will come in right away. I am 74, active and still employed (I basically code and run computer programs)