Is a pacemaker or defibrillator better? A pacemaker uses steady, low-energy electric shocks to help the heart maintain a normal beat or rhythm. Meanwhile, a defibrillator uses a low- or high-energy electric shock to help prevent or stop a potentially dangerous arrhythmia.
What is the life expectancy of a person with a defibrillator? Living with a Pacemaker or Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator ICD. Pacemakers and ICDs generally last 5 to 7 years or longer, depending on usage and the type of device. In most cases, you can lead a normal life with an ICD.
What heart conditions require a defibrillator? You might need an ICD if you have a dangerously fast heartbeat that keeps your heart from supplying enough blood to the rest of your body (such as ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation) or if you are at high risk of such a heart rhythm problem (arrhythmia), usually because of a weak heart muscle.
What are the dangers of a defibrillator?
- Blood clots or air bubbles in the vein.
- Collapsed lung.
- Defibrillator malfunction requiring your doctor to reprogram it or replace it.
- Heart or nerve damage.
- Punctured heart or lung.
- Tearing an artery or vein.
- Unnecessary electrical pulses (impulses).