What is the function of an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator?

Terminate arrhythmia. These are devices which may detect and automatically treat malignant (life-threatening) arrhythmias. Those include ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation. They use either bursts of rapid pacing or one or more high energy shocks. Patients receive these either after an arrhythmic event or prophylactically because they are at risk for these arrhythmias.
Shock the heart. The device has the abiltiy to sense when your heart is beating in an abnormal and dangerous way which could lead to you passing out or having your heart stop. It then delivers an electric shock to the heart to convert the abnormal rhythm back to normal. The device also can function as a pacemaker if your heart beat becomes too slow.

Related Questions

How does an implantable cardioverter defibrillator function?

Detection. It detects fast heart beats above a threshold set by the cardiologist and programmed into the defibrillator and delivers a shock or atp - pacemaker override, depending on the heart rate. It will deliver subsequent shocks depending on the heart rate it detects. Read more...
Defibrillators. The device has an antenna that monitors the electrical activity of the heart. If the recorded parameters fit those of ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation, the device will charge its capacitor and deliver programmed shocks to try and return the rhythm to normal. It is a computer and programmed to do its functions. They are very effective but not perfect. Read more...

How did the earlier versions of the implantable cardioverter-defibrillator function?

Similar. The first icds required surgeons to place patches on the surface of the heart and the patches were connected by wires to the generator which was a large bulky device placed under the skin in the abdomen. Read more...
I Agree, and... I agree with dr. Hahn's answer and would add that the earlier devices used an electrical pulse which is inferior to the one currently used. The result was that more energy was required for a successful shock and more patients could not be successfully shocked out of a dangerous rhythm on the first attempt. The earlier devices also had no ability to tell safe from dangerous rhythms. Read more...

What is an implantable cardioverter defibrillator?

Life saver. An implantable cardioverter defibrillator (icd) system has leads (wires) that are inserted through the veins under the collarbone and threaded to the heart. The leads are attached to a box that goes under the skin. The box has a computer that continuously monitors the signals from your heart for a dangerous arrhythmia. If this occurs, the icd stops the arrhythmia by delivering an internal shock. Read more...
ICD. Icds are implanted to monitor the electrical activity of very abnormal hearts to see if a life threatening rhythm occurs. If it detects one of these rhythms, it will charge its capacitor and fire a shock to defibrillate the heart back to stable rhythm. In appropriate patients these devices save lives. Read more...

Is an implantable cardioverter defibrillator usually efficient?

Yes. Implanted cardioverter defibrillators (icds) are the most effective treatment in terminating dangerous arrhythmias. Icds are not 100% effective, but are significantly better than medication alone. Read more...
Yes. Aicd can detect rapid heart beat and stop the cardiac arrhythmias by either overdrive pacing or delivering the shock. It is programmed at certain zone of heart rate. For exemple if it is programmed at 180 beats the device will deliver the treatment at at heart rate of above 180. Read more...

What is the significance of an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator?

Defibrillation. An automatic implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (aicd) is a lfe-saving device. The device continuely monitors the heart rhythm. When an abnormal rhythm is detected it attempts to restore a normal sinus rhythm (nsr), a cardioversion via shock or pacing alogorithms. However, when it detects a life threatening rhythm such as ventricular fibrillation it applies an immediate shock to restore nsr. Read more...

What can I expect from using an 'implantable cardioverter defibrillator'?

Palpitations, jolt. If your heart has a serious rhythm problem, the device should intercede to correct it. When that happens, you may feel palpitations or a jolt in your chest. If the defibrillator didn't intervene, you might never feel anything again! Read more...

What conditions can be treated with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator?

New Guidelines. This is somewhat complex and will not all fit in 400 characters so I am creating initials. 1. Ischemic cardiomyopathy, i.C., with ejection fraction, ef, >30% but <35%, newyork heartassoc, nyha, class ii or iii, and >30 days post mi/revascularization. 2. Ic, ef <30%. 3. Ic, ef between 36-40% with inducible ventricular fibrillation or tachycardia, 4. Non-ic with ef <35% and nyha class ii or greater. Read more...
Arrhythmias. An implantable cardioverter defibrillator (icd) is primarily used to treat abnormally rapid heart rates that are considered to be life threatening. The most common of these conditions are ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation. These devices can also act as pacemakers to treat low heart rates, but this is a secondary function. Read more...

Can you do physical exercise if you have an implantable cardioverter defibrillator?

YES. Ideally you should start in a monitored setting such as phase ii cardiac rehab. Also, it is important to tell your cardiologist or electrophysiologist - whoever programs your icd. They may need to reprogram for higher heart rates that will occur with exercise. Weight lifting with the arm where the icd is implanted may not be such a good idea - check with your ep or cardiologist. Read more...
I Agree, and... I agree with dr. Wright, and would add that we generally discourage contact sports which may directly impact the device such as boxing, tackle football, and hard-check basketball. Though quite rare, very forceful impact has the potential to destabilize the connection between the leads (wires) and the device, or even damage the wires themselves. Read more...