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January 24, 2021  
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Topic Title: Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD)
Created On: 05/18/2002 08:26 AM
 07/19/2005 03:30 PM

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My father had an ICD implanted in the early 1990's to control his heart arrhythmia. We were very grateful for the many years of life that the device offered. The device saved his life numerous times. Although the device works tremendously well for treating the heart condition, it can cause excess anxiety and depression. In fact I am currently working on my doctoral dissertation concerning this very issue (anxiety states among heart and ICD patients). The research is fairly limited, but there is enough evidence to suggest that some sort of supportive counseling or therapy would be beneficial for your mother. I personally believe that attending counseling is not only important for her psychological health but research has been able to indicate that anxiety (such as that produced by the shock of an ICD) can actually increase the number of arrhythmias. I don't want this to detract from the appreciation I have for the device, I would recommend it to most people. If you have any questions concerning the information I have offered please let me know or ask your doctor. If you’re interested in the research let me know as well.
 01/29/2004 03:59 PM

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Hello, I had an ICD implanted on 9/25/03, and to date have experienced no "zaps" or problems with the device. The actual implant procedure is relatively painless and only required an overnight hospital stay. Post-op discomfort was handled with "otc" pain medicine plus an occassional Darvocet at night. I would say that overall, there has been a great improvement in my quality of life since implantation, and I'm glad that I did it. I hope this info helps you, good luck!
 12/30/2003 05:27 PM

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Hi, my cardiodoc has just suggested and ICD. My EF is 35 - 40%. I have been reading about this on the net and would like someone who has had the implant give me the benefit of his experience: plus or minuses? TIA, Leif
 08/06/2003 07:06 PM

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As an experienced receiver of ICD shocks I can tell you that the full shock is substantial but much better than the alternative. I'd say that it felt like taking the butt end of a 2 by 4 in the chest. Remember that many devices are set to attempt to pace you out of an arrhythmia. These therapies are only a little more uncomfortable than the arrhythmia itself. I hope this helped.
 05/09/2003 10:21 AM

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My 72 year old Dad has an arrhytmia and is considering an implantable cardioverter defibrillator. Can you tell me what the shock from the ICD feels like? thank you for your help, Melinda
 11/21/2002 02:49 PM

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In response to your question about how quickly you can return to exercise. I think you will find a case by case situation when it comes to ICD placement. In your case you advised you received your ICD to treat possible recurrence of Ventricular Tachycardia. Of course you must follow the guidlines and established limitations set forth by you Physician. I will use myself as an example for you. In 1997 I was treated for unstable Ventricular Tachycardia in my local ER. Shortly after I received an ICD and found it took about a year before I needed to use it. By then I had increased my excercise almost to the VT previous level. My condition worsened as my Congestive Heart Failure worsened. Since 1997 my ICD reports around 350 episodes. As the episodes became more frequent I pretty much gave up on excersize for fitness. I was told initialy not to expect more that one or two episodes every one to two years at onset. I unluckily found this prediction to fall short. I have spoken with long time ICD patients who never had an episode. I have learned to cope with it and have been through many anti arrhythmic drugs and system protocols for my ICD. If anyone has any questions regarding my my experiences or methods for coping please contact me by this forum or directly through email. This is my first contact with a forum. I wish I had found this early on so I could have had help earlier in the program.
 08/30/2002 01:08 PM

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the doctor tells me it was't the slow heart rate,but the -20% of active heart was the reason for the ICD to be put in.The stress test results now are that the meds have the heart up to 41% The 20% heart is prone to fibulate thus need a dibrillator...Right now I am alright for a 70 year old...
 08/27/2002 06:25 PM

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Well for bradycardia (slow heart beat) it used to be you got a pacemeaker but if I recall correctly an ICD can handle this as well. Basically an ICD should be able to handle both tachycardia AND brachycardia (making it theoretically superior to a pacemaker) even though much of the press seem to be talking about what it can do for fater than normal heart rates- (I'm guessing the buzz is because pacemakers normally didn;t handle this and it servers to distinguish the device) Still all this is from an amateurs point of view- Best to ask your doctor or some Medical Industry specialist
 08/09/2002 06:24 PM

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I would also like any info on this topic. Thanks.
 08/07/2002 10:54 AM

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I am about to get a ICD also,and would like to know about low heart rate...
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