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    100% pacemaker dependent
    Shadsky0 posted:
    My mom's cardiologist informed us that her heart is 100% dependent on her pacemaker. I didn't want to scare her so I didn't ask him questions in front of her. My questions are, what does this mean? We were told her battery will last about 11 years, but how can it when it is working constantly? What is some ones prognoses while using the pacemaker 100%? She is 85, had a heart attack a few weeks ago and had the pacemaker put in at that time. Can you help with my questions and can we talk further on this? Thanks you!
    James Beckerman, MD, FACC responded:
    If a person is pacemaker dependent, that generally means that they require their pacemaker to generate the electrically activity necessary to stimulate their heart to beat a rate fast enough to be able to feel good, have a normal blood pressure, and be able to do the things they want to do comfortably. For some people, this can mean that their heart does not generate any heart rhythm without the pacemaker - but for others it could mean that their heart generates a slower rhythm, and the pacemaker just speeds it up a bit.

    The batteries are pretty amazing - they can last a long time - the doctors will check the battery every three months to make sure it is not wearing out more quickly. Pacemakers generally work very well, and tend to improve people's overall quality of life and may extend life too. Take care and all the best to your mom.
    logicalme responded:
    I have different thought on what 100% dependent means. When I first received my pacemaker it was due to my heart dropping Into the 30 area and actually would stop occasionally for few seconds. I was not 100% dependent because even if pacemaker stopped working I would not die, but my heart might just drop to low beat and might cause me to faint. I would have plenty of time to get it repaired. As of two weeks ago I was told my heart will beat only twice on its own and my pacemaker must now keep me alive. It is firing all the time now, so I am 100% dependent.

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