The cardiac team at Virtua Health’s Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Camden successfully completed the first implant of a new type of defibrillator in a patient’s heart.
The Lead Evaluation for Defibrillation and Reliability is being tested at 47 hospitals worldwide. It’s meant to treat patients with ventricular tachycardia, which causes irregular and potentially life-threatening heartbeats.
Typically, VT patients are treated with a cardiac defibrillator, which is threaded into the patient’s heart to detect and prevent the rapid, potentially dangerous heartbeats. This investigational lead is 1.6 millimeters in diameter, meaning it takes up less space in the heart veins than existing forms of technology.
“One of the issues we encounter with the larger leads used in ICDs is that the scar tissue that builds up around them over time can cause the veins in which they are inserted to become occluded,” reads a prepared statement from Virtua chief of electrophysiology and principal investors Darius Sholevar, who performed the procedure with heart rhythm specialist Aatish Garg.
Participants in the study are followed up with in 18 months.
In 2019, the hospital became one of the first in the Philadelphia/South Jersey region to offer pacemakers from Medtronic with BlueSync technology that can communicate directly with patients’ smartphones and tablets.