For every million people in the UK, around 560 have a pacemaker implanted for the first time each year. If you or someone you love needs a pacemaker, then it can be scary and overwhelming news. Learning more about the pacemaker implantation procedure can take away some of the fear. Knowledge is power.

What Does A Pacemaker Do?

A pacemaker is a small device. It is about the size of a matchbox and weighs no more than 50g. The surgeon implants the pacemaker under the skin, near your collarbone.

The pacemaker continually monitors the heart’s rhythms. It sends electrical signals along a wire into your heart. This signal helps your heart to beat at the correct rate. Modern pacemakers only send signals when they need to. When your heart is working fine, it does nothing. When there is a problem is tells the heart how to beat. These pacemakers are also able to respond to how active you are. This means that they have a smaller impact on your daily life.

Pacemaker Implantation Procedure

Before you undergo surgery, you will have to take some tests. The doctor will run some blood tests and an ECG to ensure you are healthy enough for the operation.

Only specialists fit pacemakers so you can be assured you are in safe hands.

The operation usually takes around an hour to perform. You will be given a local anaesthetic so you will be awake for the procedure. This allows you to recover quickly afterwards. Most patients can go home the day after.

The surgeon will make a small cut to place the device and wires under your skin. This cut is just below your left collar bone. The wires are then threaded through your veins to your heart.

If you are anxious, you can ask to be sedated.

Speak To A Doctor

If you have issues with your heart and want to learn more about the pacemaker implantation procedure, then you should speak to a specialist. Dr David Begley is a cardiologist with specialist expertise in arrhythmia. He can talk you through the procedure and discuss any concerns you may have. You can make an appointment to speak to him today.