Pacemaker install?

This is my first post ,first time with the club.  Basically I am trying to make the decision to get a pacemaker . I am coping daily with flutter and continuous a fib. Tired and breathless at times .  Finding it difficult to do what I have to here on the ranch . Any advice ? 


Quality of life

by AgentX86 - 2019-07-08 12:38:26

The subject says it all.  If your quality of life is suffering enough,  you'll do anything to improve it. The question is whether or not you're there yet and have you tried everything else.

You'll need to tell us more before anyone can give a reasonable opinion. What have tried? What are your doctors proposing? What are your expectations? Note that a pacemaker, alone, will do nothing for you. The first thing you need to do is to do your homework. You cannot give an informed consent without information.


by ROBO Pop - 2019-07-08 13:03:21

A pacemaker isn't likely to help with arrhythmias (flutter) or A-Fib. They are made to maintain a programmable heart rate for those who suffer Bradycardia ( slow heart rate). It's possible your breathlessness and tired feelings are due to slow hert rate and a pacer could help. Ask your doctor why he's prescribing a pacemaker and the expexted benefit to you specifically.

By the way welcome, and let me commend you for not just jumping in. Doing your homework by visiting us was a wise decision

Similar situation

by dogtired - 2019-07-08 13:42:04

I have a 2 deg AV block Type 1, at least thats what it was a year ago and most of the time I felt fine.  Occasionaly I would have times of extreame fatigue.  My first EP strongly recommended a PM BUT wasn't at all sure that it would help my fatigue!  He stated that eventually I will need it so I should get it done now.  I didn't like the justification so I saw another EP.  He stated the type 1 is usually benign and I didn't need a PM.  Some time later the fatigue is more frequent and lasts longer, I get a Karda and send the second EP a tracing, showing a HR of 30 with dropped beats.  My second EP then recommened a PM  except when I told him I didn't feel bad when I took the tracing!  

For sure if both EPs would agree that a PM would more likely than not elliminate my fatigue I would get it.  Just reading the problem posts on this site tells me that getting a PM isn't problem free and I could end up worse if I get one.

I'm just amazed that none of the docs can tell me if a PM will actually help, but both are willing to put it in regardless., and to make things worse neither has suggested a plan to determine if it will help.  They just leave it up to me to flip a coin.


by AgentX86 - 2019-07-08 23:07:30

Your EPs can't guarantee that a PM will make you feel beter because everyone reacts differently.  Your fatigue may not have anything to do with your heart, either.  A type-1 block doesn't automatically buy a pacemaker (Type-2 would) but since you have a Kardia, you should be able to corellate the block with how you feel.  If there is a high correlation, you can be reasonably sure a PM would help. And don't go by the high number of problem cases here.  People who come here tend to be those who have problems.  The other 99.9% are too busy living their lives to bother coming here. 

For what it's worth

by Gotrhythm - 2019-07-10 14:38:49

My sister was given a pacemaker although she didn't have bradycardia. She had a-fib.

The thinking was thus: The medication for a-fib was likely to give her bradycardia. Therefore she needed a pacemaker to make her able to live with the side effects of the medication to control the a-fib.

I wasn't in a position to know how she progressed medically. Based on what I was able to observe, I wasn't impressed that her quality of life was substantially improved, though it's possible she lived longer than she might have.

If I were you, I would want a clearer understanding of what a pacemaker would and would not do, and of what medications might also be needed.  I'd get a second opinion.

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