Cardiac Rhythm Management
Cardiac Rhythm Management is a procedure whereby an implantable device is implanted within the upper chest to control irregular heart rhythms including fast and slow heart rhythms.
Cardiac arrhythmia is the irregular beating of the heart when the heartbeat is too fast or too slow. This condition is caused when electrical signals or impulses that coordinate the heartbeats are not working properly.
Cardiac rhythm management is a way to manage irregular beating of the heart. The increasing cases of arrhythmia and related conditions have led to rapid advancements in cardiac rhythm management techniques and technologies.
Cardiac rhythm disorders are managed in a number of ways.
The different ways cardiac rhythm disorders can be managed include:
Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator
An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) helps to control the rhythm of the heart. It is a device that is implanted in a patient’s body to help control the rhythm of the heart. An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator is very effective at stopping and controlling dangerous arrhythmias. They are the most effective therapy for treating ventricular fibrillation. This device continuously monitors the rhythm of the heart rhythm and delivers a shock when the heart rhythm gets too slow. When the rhythm of the heart rhythm gets extremely fast, the ICD delivers a shock that controls and returns the rhythm of the heart to a normal rhythm.
A pacemaker is an electrical system that continuously monitors and regulates cardiac electrical impulses. It reads and monitors the rhythm of the heart and transmits electrical impulses to regulate the heart if it is beating too slowly or irregularly. The pacemaker is able to read the rhythm of the heat and respond appropriately.
A bi-Ventricular pacing device stimulates and controls the left and right ventricles simultaneously. The left and right ventricles pump blood in sync in a normal heart. The electrical system in the heart can malfunction or be impaired to make the left ventricle not sync with the right ventricle. This can lead to a situation whereby the heart doesn’t pump enough blood to the body. The bi-ventricular pacing device resynchronizes the heart ventricles and improves the ability of the heart to pump blood throughout the body. This device is used to treat patients with congestive heart failure.
Cardiac loop recorder
A cardiac loop recorder is a heart recording device that is implanted underneath the chest skin. This device can help search for the cause of fainting, palpitations, irregular heartbeats, and hidden heart rhythms that can cause strokes. A cardiac loop recorder works like an electrocardiogram. It continuously picks up your heart’s electrical signals. It can detect abnormal heart rhythms that may cause problems such as fainting and palpitations.
An implantable loop recorder can continuously record the rhythm of the heart for up to 3 years. If for example, you fainted due to an arrhythmia, an implantable loop recorder will record this information before, during, and after you fainted. Your doctor can then look at the recordings to find out why you fainted.
Ablation can also be used to treat and manage abnormal heart rhythms. A catheter delivers radiofrequency heat to the area of the heart causing the abnormal rhythm. The heat ablates the area and helps to stop the abnormal rhythm. Ablation has a high success rate and most patients no longer have to continually take medications or have follow-up treatments.
Cryoablation is similar to ablation. The difference is that cryoablation uses cold to stop abnormal heart rhythms while ablation uses radiofrequency heat. Cryoablation can be more effective and safer than ablation for some patients with abnormal heart rhythms.