What's a third the size of a AAA battery (~1 cc), can track your every heart beat and wirelessly informs your cardiologist?
The Reveal Linq ICM implantable cardiac monitoring device. It sounds like something right out of a James Bond movie, but it's how cardiologists at the Richard Reif Heart Institute of Doylestown Hospital are now monitoring patients who are at high risk of atrial fibrillation.
Cardiac monitoring has been around for years, but cardiologists can now implant a discreet device in your chest which is not visible in most patients and monitor your heart rhythm/beats to help diagnose arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats).
Electrophysiologists John Harding, MD and Stephen Sloan, MD were among the first in the state to implant the new LINQ devices on February 24, 2014.
Because abnormal heart rhythms and their accompanying symptoms often come and go, continuous cardiac monitoring is necessary to determine the cause of fainting, palpitations, unexplained stroke or atrial fibrillation. A patient's heart must be monitored over time so the doctor can make an accurate diagnosis.
What is an insertable cardiac monitoring device (ICM)?
The device is implanted in a patient's chest, just beneath the skin, to detect and record the heart rhythms over long periods of time. The system transports the data back to your clinician.
How long does it take to implant the ICM?
A small incision is made in the patient's chest, the Reveal LINQ is then inserted and the incision is closed. The procedure is done with a local anesthetic in an outpatient setting and typically takes less than 15 minutes.
Will my daily routine change if I get an ICM implanted?
Most people can perform almost all activities they did prior to getting an ICM implanted. Patients still have the opportunity to regain such activities as swimming, bathing, exercising and much more.
How long will I have an ICM?
The duration of how long you will have the ICM implanted is determined by your physician. Physicians typically remove the ICM after one or more heart activities are recorded. This typically gives your physician enough data to determine if your symptoms are related to abnormal heart rhythm. The Reveal LINQ ICM does have the ability to continuously monitor your heart for up to three years.
Can I have an MRI done while I have an ICM?
You can have an MRI with the Reveal LINQ impanted in your chest. However, it is recommended that you wait 6 weeks to ensure that your wound has properly healed.
What's different about the Reveal LINQ ICM?
The Reveal LINQ ICM is the smallest cardiac monitor available. Though small, it has a 3-year battery life and data memory that is 20% greater than current monitoring devices.
Have a question about atrial fibrillation?
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