Epicardial lead revision

I had an  dual epicardial lead revision June of this year (which made it  my 3rd heart surgery this year) after 2 failed attempts to place a lead on left side. I have a left bundle branch block, cardiomyopathy and CHF. I still am having at times severe pain at incision sight/ribs if  I wear anything remotely snug around that area.  I was just wanting  to see if someone could share their experience with this surgery that has been postop longer than me. Thanks in advance 


CRT and epicardial lead revision

by Gemita - 2020-12-31 06:28:41

Hello Lee,

My initial observation would be that you have had several interventions this year and healing is bound to take longer particularly with failed procedures.  Also an Epicardial lead procedure is I believe more invasive than a transvenous one, although it can often be more effective in preventing sub-optimal lead placement because lead implantation can be done under direct vision using the Epicardial approach. 

In view of your medical history, I hope you have told your doctors about your continuing intermittent pain.  Severe intermittent pain, particularly in the chest, needs to be fully assessed. 

I know my experience cannot be compared with yours since I do not have CRT and therefore no third lead, but I did have lots of healing problems after my dual chamber pacemaker implant leading to considerable discomfort/pain in the rib cage, sternum area.  I also developed collateral circulation around my device (a network of veins which formed) to bypass my traumatised narrowed subclavian vein.  While these additional collateral veins were forming I had pressure type pain in several areas of my chest, particularly across my collarbone area.  They thought I had a blood clot at first, but it was just nature's way of finding additional pathways to keep my blood flowing.  

The body is very good at healing itself if we give it the right conditions to do so.  Six months on though would seem to be adequate time for healing, so I would advise you to speak to your doctors, especially if the pain continues to be intermittently severe.  Does the incision site look healthy Lee:  no swelling, redness, oozing?  Hopefully no signs of inflammation/infection?

Good luck

Epicardial lead

by LeeLee1976 - 2021-01-01 21:57:06

The incision site has healed very well. I have do know that there is definitely some swelling below the incision especially when it is really hurting. I back to cardio on Monday. I had been sitting steadily at 25% for my EF and had an echo to get cardiac clearance for neck surgery and it dropped to 10% so that was disappointing. 2020 was just a crap year all around. I appreciate your inside.

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As for my pacemaker (almost 7 years old) I like to think of it in the terms of the old Timex commercial - takes a licking and keeps on ticking.