A temporary pacemaker is a device which delivers a small electrical discharge to the heart when a patient has inserted under electrical problems of a slow or irregular heartbeat.
How Does A Pacemaker Work?
An artificial pacemaker system has two parts: a generator and wires (leads). The pacemaker generator is a small battery-powered unit. It produces the electrical impulses that the heart needs to stimulate the heart muscle to pump blood. The generator is connected to small wires that are inserted, via a large vein, into the heart. The electrical impulses flow through these leads to the heart and are timed to flow at regular intervals just as impulses from the heart's natural pacemaker would. The electrical impulse causes the heart tissue to begin a heartbeat. Most pacemakers work only when they're needed. That is, they have a sensing device that that enables them to work when the heart is beating slower than the preset pacemaker rate. A pacemaker may also sense (monitor) the heart’s natural electrical activity. If a pacemaker senses a natural heartbeat, it will not deliver a pacing pulse to the heart.
Please refer to the procedure ‘temporary cardiac pacing’ for a more detailed explanation.
Are There Any Complications?
All Intensive Care interventions and procedures carry a degree of potential risk even when performed by skilled and experienced staff. Please discuss these issues with the medical and nursing staff who are caring for the patient.
Of course, if you have any questions or concerns, please discuss them with the ICU nurses and doctors.
Temporary Pacemaker Version 1.1
First published June 2008
Reviewed February 2008
Reviewed by Kaye Rolls CNC ICCMU
The information contained on this page is general in nature and therefore cannot reflect individual patient variation. In addition it reflects Australian intensive care practice which may differ from other countries. It is meant as a back up to specific information which will be discussed with you by the Doctors and Nurses caring for your loved one. ICCMU attests to the accuracy of the information contained here BUT takes no responsibility for how it may apply to an individual patient. Please refer to the full disclaimer.
Last Updated on Thursday, 10 March 2011 15:09