Women's Heart Advisor January 2016 Issue

Implanted Cardiac Devices More Helpful to Women

The pacemaker generator is implanted near the collarbone, while the leads extend into the heart. If the heartís rhythm is abnormal, the leads send pulses to restore a healthy rhythm.

Implanted Cardiac Devices More Helpful to Women

Many who need them do not get them, but that practice may be changing.

Most people are familiar with pacemakers that speed up and pace a slow heart. But there are also pacemakers designed to correct poor coordination between the left and right sides of the heart, a condition that may cause heart failure. These devices pace both sides of the heart to synchronize the contractions. For this reason, the treatment is called cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT). In the past decade, it has become clear that womenís hearts are different from menís. Case in point: Women who receive implantable cardiac devices do better and survive longer than men. Yet women are less likely than men to receive such a device.

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