WASHINGTON: A research study found that patients with leadless pacemakers are likely to have fewer short-term and mid-term complications than those with transvenous pacemakers.
Approximately a million pacemakers are annually implanted in patients to provide electrical stimulation to regulate heartbeat.
Conventional pacemakers are surgically placed under the skin of patient's chest stretching from the shoulder vein and attaching to the heart.
The wires and surgery lead to complications in the patient. Leadless pacemakers on the other hand, are devoid of wires and are ten times smaller than the traditional pacemakers.They are placed directly into the heart using a catheter passed through the femoral vein in the leg.
A study compared short- and mid-term complications between 718 patients receiving the Nanostim leadless pacemaker and 1,436 patients with conventional (transvenous) pacemakers.
It was found that patients receiving one type of leadless pacemaker (Nanostim) overall had fewer complications (5.8 percent vs. 9.4 percent). Leadless pacemakers completely eliminated lead and pocket complications, including infection. By comparison, complications among traditional pacemaker recipients included lead complications (3.62 percent), pocket complications (0.42 percent) and infection (1.74 percent). There were no significant differences between the groups in regard to rates of vascular complications, electrode dislodgement and generator complications.
Daniel Cantillon, a researcher said, "The data from this study is encouraging, and we expect complications from leadless pacemakers to continue to decline as the technology improves and physicians gain experience implanting these devices".
The study was published in 'Heart Rhythm journal'.