Before having a pacemaker fitted, you'll have a preoperative assessment.
The team looking after you will check that you're fit for surgery. You can discuss the operation and ask any questions at the assessment.
You'll have blood tests and x-rays arranged at this stage. This is so there are no delays when you're called into hospital.
Your doctor will ask you about:
- your general health
- heart problems
- any other medical problems
- any problems or reactions you or your family have had with anaesthetics
Preparing for the operation
Take steps to improve your health and fitness before the operation.
This should help speed up your recovery time and reduce the risk of complications.
You'll have to stop eating or drinking before surgery. Your specialist will tell you when during the preoperative assessment.
A heart specialist (cardiologist) will fit your pacemaker. They will have a special interest in pacemakers.
Types of pacemaker
There are several different types of pacemaker.
The main types are:
- single-chamber pacemaker
- dual-chamber pacemaker
- biventricular pacemaker
The type of pacemaker you need will depend on your specific heart problem.
A single-chamber pacemaker has 1 wire.
It connects to either:
- the right atrium (upper heart chamber)
- the right ventricle (lower heart chamber)
A dual-chamber pacemaker has 2 wires. These connect to the right atrium and right ventricle.
A biventricular pacemaker has 3 wires. These connect to the right atrium, right ventricle and left ventricle.
Content supplied by the NHS and adapted for Ireland by the HSE