First in UK for new technological defibrillator

October 30, 2015

An Eastbourne man is the first in the UK to be fitted with the latest defibrillator which can detect and monitor the abnormal heart rhythm that can indicate the potential onset of a stroke. This new device uses the latest technology and is the next generation of implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs).

The device was fitted by Consultant Cardiologists Dr Nikhil Patel and Dr Richard Veasey in an hour long procedure at Eastbourne DGH. The device only requires a single wire to be inserted into the heart compared with previous models that require two wires inserted into different chambers of the heart. This means the procedure is quicker and reduces the risk to the patient. Once fitted, the device can shock the heart back into a normal rhythm. In addition, through external monitoring of the heart rhythm called atrial fibrillation it can warn doctors of the potential onset of a stroke. The device is also Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) compatible which means patients fitted with the device can undergo MRI scans which allow doctors to undertake a wide range of diagnoses.

Around 75 patients a year in East Sussex are able to benefit from cardiac defibrillators.

Dr Nikhil Patel Consultant Cardiologist and Clinical Lead for Cardiovascular Services said, “This defibrillator uses the very latest technology and it will soon start to become the device that is used commonly across the country. It can be inserted in less time than other devices which is better for patients. Its contoured shape and smooth edges increases patient comfort and reduces skin pressure.  This improved device can recognise the rhythms that cause strokes and can better differentiate between dangerous and harmless heart rhythms helping to eliminate inappropriate shocks. All in all, far better for patients.”

The patient fitted with this new device, Marco Bushnell (59) from Eastbourne, sitting up in bed after the procedure said, “It feels a bit sore but otherwise I am looking forward to going home.”

2015-10-30 ICD patient 2015-10-30 ICD team

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