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AF Association
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CRT-D Pacemaker Implantation

Well, after a long wait I finally wen t in for my CRT-D pacemaker. After reading all the success stories on here I was looking forward to finally getting my life back.

Unfortunately, things didn't go to plan. They opened up my shoulder at the site where they had put in my ICD a year ago. They removed my ICD and tried to thread through one of the leads that goes through a vein down to the Ventricle. That's when they hit problems. It would appear that instead of the vein tracing a long gentle curve my vein has a kink in it and they were unable to complete the procedure and ended up stuffing the old ICD back in again and zipping me closed.

The plan is to go back in again but this time with a special piece of kit to allow them to place the lead tip. Success rate is estimated at 60%.

I'm obviously hugely disappointed and I'm afraid I didn't take the bad news well. I don't understand how a large Hospital doesn't carry all the kit required to complete the job.

I hope others getting this procedure have more luck than me.

4 Replies

I am so sorry that you had such a let-down and I do hope that it will be sorted out for you. They abandoned my discectomy in February because I went into AF at the operating theatre door. They said it was too dangerous to proceed but my EP commented recently that they should have cardioverted me and then gone ahead with the operation.

Do please let us know how you get on.

Very best wishes.


Oh Ogilvie, what a disappointment that was for you!

It does seem strange that the hospital didn't have the piece of equipment required, but perhaps it's an expensive part that's always being improved in design and isn't often required.

I really hope that next time you go to have your pacemaker inserted all will be well, 60% leans towards more likely to be successful than not. Did they give any indication as to how long you would have to wait?

Wishing you every success next time.



Hi JJ50,

I got a call from the EP today and he can fit me in around September 5 (3 weeks). Apparently part of the issue was the number of X Rays they are allowed to take in any one session. That might explain why I am glowing in the dark now !

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At least there is a "special kit" that may enable the procedure. Presumably it is rarely needed, or maybe the only one they had was used for someone else recently. Here's not to wonder why, but be thankful there is a potential way forward. £15,000 for the ICD, £20,000 for the pacemaker and a follow up procedure in 3 weeks - you sound like a lucky chap!


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