Probably Silly Question

New here. Had bivent pacemaker installed Aug 7th.
How can one tell what percentage of pacemaker being used?



by ela-girl - 2007-08-13 02:08:53

Hi, bilcal! question is a silly question here. We all had some lapse from our doctors in telling us what to expect etc etc.

When you go for your pacer check, you can ask the doctor or tech or rep who does your check how often you are being paced. There is no way for you to tell otherwise.

Feel free to ask any and all questions...someone here will respond!

Happy Pacing-


by SMITTY - 2007-08-14 03:08:43


Welcome to the PM Club. Silly or dumb questions are not allowed here. If someone tries to post a question that falls into that category it will be automatically rejected. Therefore, if your question is accepted, it is not silly or dumb. And I’m just being a S.A. No question is ever rejected.

As ela-girl said, you can’t tell how much your PM is working and you will have to get this information at your checkups. At least you should never be able to tell when it is working because you should never feel your pacemaker doing its job.

However, you can make some assumptions sometimes, based on your heart rate. For example, say your PM is set for a range of 70 to 120 and at some time when you are quietly sitting and you find your heart rate at 70 BPM. There is a better than an even possibility that your heart rate dropped below 70 and your PM came on-line and is keeping it there. Of course if you are active and your HR goes above 70 your PM can still be helping maintain whatever your HR may be at that time. Until such time as your heart rate goes above the maximum setting your PM is on duty checking every heart beat to see if it needs to send an impulse to initiate that beat. When its help is not needed, it waits until the next bat to see it needs to send an impulse. Now when your hart rate exceeds the maximum setting the pacemaker takes a rest, but continues to count your HR so that it will know when it should return to the game.

As for your bi-vent unit, well let me start by explaining what I think I know about my dual lead unit. My PM will send impulses as needed to maintain a minimum rate in the atrium and one ventricle chamber. Your bi-vent unit will maintain the desired rate in the atrium and will also send impulses to make both of your ventricle chambers contract. This causes you to give a better heart output than my dual lead can do.

I see you have had your PM for only a week. There is one thing many of us learn the heard way which our doctors seem to have a problem passing on to us when the implant our PM. That is the initial setting is sort of a by guess and by God setting and it may not be the best settling for you. Establishing your optimum setting sometimes takes a little trial and error. So if you have reason to not be satisfied with your PM don’t hesitate to call your doctor as many times as it takes to get your PM to performing as it should.

A PM is wonderful invention, but it is not designed to cause any discomfort. After you get by the initial discomfort from the surgery, you should not ever be aware you have a PM keeping your heart thumping way as it should.

Good luck and please let us know how things go.


Thank you very much ela-girl and Smitty

by bilcal - 2007-08-14 07:08:58

I really appreciate your kindness and great information that you both have sent me.

Pacemaker Usage

by peter - 2007-08-22 08:08:41

Well it all depend if you have had an AV node abltion as well. If you have had a biphase synchonising pacemaker fitted. This is a 3 lead pacemaker but sometimes only 2 of the leads are fitted. If you have had an AV node ablation your heart is pacemaker dependant and is pacing all of the time. Approximately half of the battery life is used for housekeeping and monitoring and storing data. The leads have 3 parameters voltage applied duration of pulse and their impedance (AC resistance). These 3 parameters determine the life of your pacemaker. In fact anyones pacemaker. Although demand pacemakers do last longer as they are pacing as and when required. Anyone who is pacemaker dependant and has had a recent implantation should expect approximately 5 years. Anything more than that is a bonus. If your lead impedance- actually determined by your own body is low the pacemaker could only last 4 years. Your impedance usually varies between 300 ohms and 1000 ohms. At the higher impedance less current flows. When you go for you pacing check ask to see the "GAS GAUGE" on the computer. This will show a picture of a car type petrol/gas gauge and if you look at the needle you will see how much fuel/battery life is left. This is worked out by the pacemaker itself monitoring the internal impedance of the battery. All very clever stuff.
Best wishes Peter

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