Benefits and Risks – Cardiac Resynchronisation Therapy Devices

Cardiac resynchronisation therapy, or CRT, is a clinically proven heart failure treatment option for some heart failure patients that is designed to help the heart beat in rhythm. An implantable heart device sends tiny electrical impulses to the lower chambers (ventricles) of the heart to make them beat together again in a more synchronised pattern. This improves the heart’s ability to pump blood and oxygen to the body.

Benefits

Cardiac resynchronisation therapy, in combination with a complete program of therapy, has proven to improve the quality of life for many patients by reducing symptoms of heart failure, increasing exercise capacity and allowing individuals to resume many daily activities. It is not a replacement for drug therapy, and it is recommended that cardiac resynchronisation therapy patients also continue taking medication as determined by their physician.

Risks

Risks associated with these implantable device systems include, but are not limited to, infection at the surgical site and/or sensitivity to the device material, failure to deliver therapy when it is needed, or receiving extra therapy when it is not needed.

After receiving a CRT device, you will have limitations with respect to magnetic and electromagnetic radiation, electric or gas-powered appliances, and tools with which you are allowed to be in contact.

Treatment with these implantable device systems is prescribed by your doctor. This treatment is not for everyone. Please talk to your doctor to see if it is right for you.

Your doctor should discuss all potential benefits and risks with you. Although many individuals benefit from the use of this treatment, results may vary.

Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.

Last updated: 22 Sep 2010

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