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This is an invasive procedure used to stabilise the heart rhythm.

It is performed in the Cardiac Catheterisation Laboratory (Cath Lab) by a Cardiologist and cardiac team. It takes 1 to 2 hours. The patient will then remain an inpatient in the hospital. An IV (intravenous Line) is inserted into the arm or hand and a sedative allows the patient to relax but remain conscious throughout.

The Procedure

Most commonly, an incision is made on the left side of the chest under the clavicle, following local anaesthetic, and the leads and pacemaker are inserted. Using x-ray guidance, the leads are fixed into position. When the leads are connected to the heart and the pacemaker, the doctor determines the settings using an external programmer.