New, Leadless Dual Chamber Pacemaker Currently in Trials
Pacing the heart is an essential part of the treatment plan for someone with bradycardia, a slow heartbeat, or those who may be suffering from heart problems, including congestive heart failure. The pacemaker helps the heart beat in proper rhythm and can improve the patient’s quality of life dramatically.
Since the inception of modern pacemaker technology, the device has been composed of leads to the heart connected to a battery or pulse generator. More recently, various leadless pacing systems were developed to reduce some of the concerns over lead breakage, clot formation, dislodgement, and blood loss due to traditional pacemaker design. It is estimated that up to one in six patients experience complications with a conventional pacemaker. While these leadless pacemakers are tiny, effective, and long-lasting, they have one major limitation. Leadless pacemakers, to this point, can only be used as a single chamber pacing device. Those with dual chamber needs would have to opt for a traditional wired pacemaker.
However, Abbot is currently trialing a novel, dual chamber, leadless pacemaker. As you can imagine, creating this device was quite an achievement. It required two separate leadless pacemaker devices that communicate with one another. One is implanted in the right ventricle, with the other in the right atrium. If this trial shows promising results and the FDA approves the device, it would be the first of its kind. The most significant benefit is finally giving patients a choice between a traditional pacemaker and a wireless option.
We look forward to keeping you updated on the progression of this trial and, specifically, on whether the FDA approves the device. We’re excited to bring this and other technological improvements to you via this blog. Of course, if you have any questions about pacing the heart or other cardiovascular concerns, we encourage you to contact our office or visit your cardiologist for general cardiac care.