What is a Pacemaker?

An man-made pacemaker can be an electric medical device which is utilized to treat abnormalities in the rhythm of the human being heart. The unit are used internally inside the body, are usually small and implanted into the torso. The pacemaker provides electrical power impulses that allow the heart to conquer at its normal rate, if the heart were not in a position to do so alone.

Reason for the need of an pacemaker

A pacemaker can be used to take care of arrhythmias. Arrhythmias are problems or abnormalities in the rhythm of the heartbeat. These problems or abnormalities include an unusual heartbeat, the rate of the heartbeat being too sluggish or the rate of the heartbeat being too fast. Arrhythmias are a severe condition which in turn causes shortness of breath, exhaustion and fainting. It can also lead to serious destruction of organs or even fatality if not cared for properly. However these problems may easily be resolved with the implementation of any pacemaker. A pacemaker can allow a person with these problems to lead a normal and energetic lifestyle alleviating them of exhaustion and fainting.

How an unnatural pacemaker functions

The pacemaker is run on batteries and gives electronic impulses through electrodes, that happen to be linked to the cardiac muscle to modify the defeat of the center. These electric powered impulses regulate the heart beat and maintain the right tempo of the heart and soul. The leads which connected between the pacemaker and the heart send electrical signals back and forth and sense when the heart and soul needs some sort of treatment. When it needs treatment, the heart and soul will obtain an impulse from the device to correct the situation.

Human Pacemaker

Within the heart there are electro-mechanical occurrences which cause the contraction and leisure of the muscles in the center. The cells of cardiac muscle can be categorised as either non-pacemaker skin cells or pacemaker cells in terms of electro-mechanical activity. It's the pacemaker cells that induce the impulses and control the heart rate.

The pacemaker cells lie within the sinoatrial (SA) node. This node can be found in the wall membrane of the right atrium. These pacemaker cells cause spontaneous depolarizations which make action potentials that determine the heart rate under normal physical conditions. Pacemaker skin cells can also be bought at the atrioventricular (AV) node, which lays within the ventricular surfaces. It is the SA node that generally creates the heart's electrical impulses and 's the reason it is almost always called the pacemaker, if the SA node were not to operate or if it was obstructed on its avenue, it would be the AV node that could generate the pulse and be the new pacemaker.

The failing of the function of the cells brings about irregular and irregular heartbeats which require modification. The manufactured pacemaker can provide this correction using its own electronic impulses.

Diseases Linked to pacemaker


Arrhythmias or cardiac dysrhythmia is the condition where the electrical activity in the center is unnatural. The pacemaker can be used to treat this condition if the heart is defeating too fast, too sluggish or if the heart and soul is conquering irregularly. The heart normally is better than between 60 to 100 beats per minute, however different kinds of arrhythmias can cause the center to beat below or above this rate. Bradyarrhythmias causes the heart and soul to beat below 60 beats each and every minute, tachyarrhythmias causes the center to defeat above 100 beats each and every minute.

Causes of Arrhythmias

There are many factors behind arrhythmias occurring, such as:

  • Injury caused by a coronary attack.
  • Injury during curing after center surgery.
  • Coronary artery disease.
  • A change in the cardiac muscle in the heart.
  • An imbalance of sodium or potassium in the bloodstream which causes electrolyte imbalances.

Symptoms of Arrhythmias

Many symptoms can come up because of arrhythmias. Torso pains, shortness of breath, dizziness, fainting, fatigue, and palpitations of the center are common problems associated with arrhythmias, but if kept untreated the issues may become much more severe and may even lead to fatality. However an arrhythmia can also be silent and a patient may be unacquainted with this problem as nothing of the symptoms outlined may have happened. A doctor can identify an arrhythmia with a regular physical exam using an electrocardiogram which steps the pulse of the heart. Any problems in the rhythm of the heart and soul will become evident and will point out if a pacemaker is required.

Types of Arrhythmias

As mentioned already arrhythmias serves as a either bradyarrhythmias (heart rate too sluggish) or tachyarrhythmias (heartrate too fast).

Bradyarrhythmias results a heart rate lower than 60 beats each and every minute, the different types include sinus node dysfunction and center blocks.

Sinus node dysfunction leads to slow rhythm as the heart beats because of unusual sinus node (SA).

Heart block brings about delaying or blocking the electric powered impulses which travel from the sinus node to the ventricles.

A pacemaker can be used to treat both of the these conditions

Tachyarrhythmias brings about a heart rate higher than 100 beats each and every minute, the various types of this condition include atrial early beats, atrial flutter, paroxysmal tachycardias, ventricular premature beats, ventricular tachycardia, and ventricular fibrillation.

Atrial premature beats are sooner than expected extra beats which come from the atria. These do not require treatment.

Atrial flutter is swift appearing atrial activity. This can cause rates of 250 - 300 bpm and is also most common after heart and soul surgery.

Atrial fibrillation is a common irregular heart tempo. It causes the atria to contract abnormally.

Paroxysmal tachycardis results a rapid heartrate between 140 and 250 bpm from above the ventricles.

Ventricular premature beats are surprising beats from the ventricles.

Ventricular tachycardia is a series of three or even more ventricular premature beats in a row.

Ventricular fribrillation is the most life threatening type of arrhythmia which results in disorded erratic impulses of the ventricles because the ventricles cannot contract.

Invention of the Pacemaker

Who created the first pacemaker?

The first manufactured pacemaker to be utilized in aiding the tempo of the heart and soul was developed by John Hopps. John Alexander Hopps was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada in 1919. He went to the University or college of Manitoba and in 1941 achieved a B. Sc. Eng level in electrical anatomist. In 1942 Hopps joined up with the National Research Council of Canada. Hopps did not produce the first pacemaker with all his own work but got help from both Dr. Wilfred Bigelow, a Canadian heart surgeon and Dr. John Callaghan, a cardiac surgeon also from Canada. In 1949 the first work started with this trio in inventing the first external artificial pacemaker. The research and development for his or her project was undertaken at the Banting Institute in the University or college of Toronto with the completing details completed in 1951. With both Dr. Bigelow and Dr. Callaghan's huge knowledge of the human heart, and Hopps' level in electrical executive the first successful pacemaker was created which lead the way to improve treatment of arrhythmias.

Artificial Pacemaker

How does it work?

The modern implantable unnatural cardiac pacemaker involves two parts, the pacemaker device which generates the impulses and the insulated leads which are linked to the heart via electrodes.

The pacemaker generator device (pulse generator) is run by the use of batteries; these batteries must store enough energy to provide electro-mechanical impulses to keep the rhythm of the heart and soul, they are recharged when required and send electronic signals backwards and forwards to the center through the leads. This product is relatively small and is implanted into the chest.

The pacemaker leads that happen to be covered are also implanted into the body. These leads are extremely thin and are connected to both heart wall membrane and the pacemaker generator device. The electric signals that happen to be made by the pulse generator send small amounts of electrical energy through the leads which prompt these devices to send impulses to the heart if the rhythm of the heartbeat is inappropriate.

Method of Pacing

The methods of pacing the tempo of the center include percussive pacing, transcutaneous pacing, epicardial pacing, and transvenous pacing. However these procedures of pacing are only used temporarily in conjunction with an exterior pacemaker or within an emergency. The technique used in the implantable pacemaker is everlasting pacing.

Permanent pacing entails placing one or more pacing leads (electrodes) in the chamber/chambers of the heart and soul. The electrode lead is put and handed down through a vein until it gets to the heart valve, the business lead continues to feed the valve and it is located inside the chamber of the center. After the surgeon is pleased with the positioning of the electrode in heart chamber the contrary end of the business lead is connected to pacemaker generator device. The generator device is also implanted into the chest of the body.

Different types of Pacemakers

There are now many different types of pacemakers which assist in treating other heart and soul conditions as well such as combining pacemakers and defibrillators in one device. Some devices only use one electrode while others utilize many electrodes to regulate different positions of the heart and soul.

The three basic types of implantable pacemakers designed to use permanent pacing include:

  • Single-chamber pacemakers, this type of pacemaker only uses one pacing lead. The pacing business lead is placed in mere one chamber, either the atrium or the ventricle.
  • Dual-chamber pacemakers, this kind of pacemaker uses two pacing leads. The pacing leads are placed in two chambers of the heart, with one pacing the ventricle and the other pacing the atrium.
  • Rate-responsive pacemakers, this kind of pacemaker includes a sensor that automatically adjusts credited to an alteration in the activity of our body.

Materials Used

The materials used for producing the pacemaker generator and electrodes are inert, nontoxic, biocompatible and everything function in the body.

The casing of the pacemaker generator is constructed of stainless, titanium or a titanium alloy. The power requires storing a sizable amount of energy but cannot be too big because of the small size of these devices, for this a lithium power supply can be used. The electrodes are made from platinum or platinum-iridium alloy but insulated with polyurethane. Sealing of the casing or any other areas is performed using silicon rubber or polypropylene.

Methods of production

Pacemaker devices are produced by biomedical executive companies such as Boston Scientific. You can find three main components which must be produced to produce a pacemaker.

The main power used for a pacemaker device is a lithium/iodine cell. The iodine and a polymer are combined and heated along first. The liquid iodine/polymer solidifies to form the cathode with the lithium building the anode. Dampness is prevented from going into the power by hermetically sealing it.

The wires in the leads are produced by using a approach to extrusion. The wires are bundled alongside one another and insulated with polyurethane. One end is molded to match the pacemaker and the other to be located in the center.

The motherboard found in the pacemaker includes semiconductors, resistors and capacitors that are combined together on a single circuit using hybridization.

Once these components are produced they can all be put along in the casing of titanium or stainless, and closed using the polypropylene or silicon plastic.

Improvements and the future

There have been many advancements in the technology of pacemakers. They are low in size for the comfort of patients, the lithium batteries used have significantly improved upon the multiyear life spans of the device, better leads and wires along with improved electronics have reduced power consumption, and now these devices can treat various types of arrhythmias.

Increasing numbers of patients requiring pacemakers means more should be produced. Further research will be completed to improve the existing devices. Future improvements may include more durable batteries with the use of radioactive isotopes, smaller devices, and an application of cardiac speed making technology to the mind.

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