A 34-year-old member asked:
what is the difference between a defibrillator and a pacemaker?
2 doctor answers
Dr. Joseph Roosth answered
34 years experience Internal Medicine
What they do: Some pacemakers include defibrillators and some do not. A "regular" pacemaker simply sets the heart rate or helps to control the rate at which the heart beats. An implated defibrillator, usually is also a pacemaker, but constantly monitors the heart for dangerous heart rate types and delivers an eclectric shock to try and return the irregular heart rate to normal.
Answered on Apr 25, 2015
Dr. Liviu Klein answered
22 years experience Cardiology
Many differences: A pacemaker is used in the case of slow heart beats or blocked electrical conduction between upper and lower chambers (av block). A defibrillator will 'shock' (defibrillate) the heart in the case if abnormal life threatening fast heart beats (ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia). All defibrillators have a back-up pacemaker in them, but pacemakers cannot defibrillate the heart.
Answered on Nov 28, 2017
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