Leadless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation

Female black patient lying down on hospital bed while nurse is checking her heart beat with stethoscope

Overview

What is a Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation?

A leaderless pacemaker is a small, self-contained device implanted in the right ventricle of your heart to send small electrical impulses to maintain a suitable heart rate and rhythm. A traditional pacemaker requires your doctor to perform a two-step procedure to thread the wires into your heart, and then cut into your chest wall, or abdomen, to create a surgical pocket for the pulse generator.  Unlike a traditional pacemaker implantation, a leaderless pacemaker implantation only requires a catheter procedure, and no wires.  The leaderless pacemaker is embedded in your heart, and there is no need to place anything under your skin of your chest or abdomen.   

After surgery, you’ll be in recovery where you’ll lie flat and keep your leg straight for two to six hours.  A sterile dressing will be place at the insertion site in your groin. You will stay in the hospital overnight and released to go home after your device is checked and functioning as expected. 

There are several benefits of a leaderless pacemaker vs. a traditional pacemaker, including: 

Smaller device

The device is much smaller than a traditional pacemaker and in a sealed case about the size of a large vitamin capsule. 

Less invasive procedure

The procedure is less invasive than with a traditional pacemaker implantation. 

No wires

There are no wires to become dislodged or cause problems, like perforating the heart muscle.   

No surgical pocket

There is no surgical pocket that can have an infection or other complications. 

No lump

There is no lump under the skin or discomfort from the pulse generator. 

No restrictions on activity

There are no restrictions on upper body activity while you heal. 

MRI Safe (with some limitations)

A leaderless pacemaker is MRI conditional, which means it is safe to have an MRI with some limitations. With a traditional pacemaker having an MRI is generally not safe.  If you need an MRI, it’s imperative that you let the medical staff which pacemaker you have.

Why

Why a Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation? 

Your doctor may recommend you have a leaderless permanent pacemaker implantation for the following reasons: 

Tachy-brady syndrome

If you have tachy-brady syndrome, which is when your heart alternates between fast and slow heartbeats. 

Bradycardia

If you have bradycardia, which is when your heart beats too slowly. 

Heart block

If you have heart block, which is when the electrical signal is delayed or blocked. 

Less time & less invasive

The procedure takes less time and is less invasive. 

Risks

Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation Potential Risks and Complications

Potential risks or complications to a leaderless pacemaker implantation may include: 

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Bleeding

Bleeding from the catheter insertion site. 

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Fail to deliver therapy

Failure to deliver the therapy when it’s needed or receiving extra therapy when it’s not. 

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Infection

Infection at the catheter insertion site. 

Prep

Preparing for Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation

Your cardiologist will give you instructions to help you prepare for the procedure and discuss the risks and benefits so you can make an informed decision. 

What to Expect

What to Expect During Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation 

During the Procedure

During the Procedure

A leaderless pacemaker is implanted by using a catheter inserted into the femoral vein through a small incision in your groin.  Your cardiologist will numb the insertion site and will use an X-ray machine to guide the catheter to your heart.  Once in the right ventricle, the pacemaker will be positioned in your heart.  The pacemaker is then tested to make sure it’s programmed correctly and implanted into the heart wall.  The catheter is then removed and the incision site closed.  The entire procedure generally takes about 30 minutes or more to complete.   

After the Procedure

After the Procedure

After surgery, you’ll be in recovery where you’ll lie flat and keep your leg straight for two to six hours.  A sterile dressing will be place at the insertion site in your groin. You will stay in the hospital overnight and released to go home after your device is checked and functioning as expected. 

Follow-Up

Follow-Up

Be sure to follow your cardiologist’s instructions about taking your medications and keeping your appointments for device checks.   The battery life of a leaderless pacemaker is between 5 to 15 years.  When your pacemaker battery runs low, it’s programmed to give you enough lead-time for it to be replaced.  You don’t have to worry that your pacemaker will quit on you.  Your cardiologist may also be able to monitor your device via telephone or the Internet.  Always, let your cardiologist know if you experience any adverse symptoms or have any concerns.  

Specialists 

Leaderless Permanent Pacemaker Implantation Specialists 

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 360W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 360W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 360W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

2001 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 280W, Santa Monica, CA 90404

8631 West 3rd St., Suite 610E, Los Angeles, CA 90048