Type of Surgery
Last updated: 02/17/2009
The implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is a surgically implanted electronic device that directs an electric charge directly into the heart to treat life-threatening arrhythmias.
An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is a small battery-powered electrical impulse generator which is implanted in patients who are at risk of sudden cardiac death due to ventricular fibrillation. The device is programmed to detect cardiac arrhythmia and correct it by delivering a jolt of electricity. In current variants, the ability to revert ventricular fibrillation has been extended to include both atrial and ventricular arrhythmias as well as the ability to perform biventricular pacing in patients with congestive heart failure or bradycardia.
The process of implantation of an ICD is similar to implantation of a pacemaker. Similar to pacemakers, these devices typically include electrode wire/s which pass through a vein to the right chambers of the heart, usually being lodged in the apex of the right ventricle. The difference is that pacemakers are more often temporary and generally designed to consistently correct bradycardia, while AICDs are often permanent safeguards against sudden abnormalities.
If you need heart surgery, you don't want a surgeon who only got a C in medical school. The same principle applies in helping people with mental illnesses.
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