A CRT-D is a special device for patients who are at high risk of sudden cardiac arrest. While working like a normal pacemaker to treat slow heartbeats, a CRT-D device also delivers small electrical impulses to the left and right ventricles to help them contract at the same time. This helps the heart pump more efficiently.
Islam Gul, a 65-year-old Pakistani national, was recently taken to hospital in critical condition. Upon examination, doctors found he suffered from a dangerously irregular heartbeat, very weak heart muscle and multiple co-morbidities including high blood pressure, diabetes and multiple blocked arteries. Gul had a history of frequent episodes of rapid chaotic heartbeat, leading to fainting before he was admitted to the hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU).
Dr Waleed Yasin Kadro, consultant interventional cardiologist at the hospital, explained: “The patient was very high risk with multiple co-morbidities, several severely blocked arteries and very weak heart muscle. Any type of operation could have been fatal. Therefore, our priority was to strengthen his heart muscle and simultaneously treat his fast and dangerous heartbeat quickly and effectively, as an irregular heartbeat could also have led to stroke, heart failure and sudden death. He continued: “Given the delicate condition of the patient, we used the innovative cardiac resynchronization therapy with defibrillator (CRT-D). It was the first time that such technology had been used in our hospital, bringing a new life to a high-risk patient.
A CRT-D device treats dangerously rapid heart rhythms (arrhythmias) that can lead to sudden cardiac death. If the device detects dangerously fast heartbeats, it delivers a shock to the heart. This shock (defibrillation) stops the abnormal rhythm. Without this life-saving therapy, the dangerously fast pace can lead to death in mere seconds.
Dr. Kadro explained how the device works: “This device simultaneously gives electrical stimulation to the left and right sides of the heart, causing the contraction of the heart muscle to synchronize. At the same time, it strengthens the force of contraction of the heart muscle, allowing the heart to work better. The wire implanted in the right ventricle monitors the heartbeat and once the heart becomes erratic, it delivers electric shocks to stop this abnormal rhythm quickly and effectively.
The minimally invasive surgery was performed under local anesthesia under the control of X-ray fluoroscopy and was effective in stabilizing the patient. Gul was discharged from the hospital within 48 hours. He comes to the hospital for regular check-ups. A relieved Gul told Gulf News: “I am indebted to the doctors at RAK Hospital for their prompt intervention which saved my life.”
Commenting on the groundbreaking procedure, Dr. Raza Siddiqui, Executive Director of RAK Hospital said, “As always, RAK Hospital has been at the forefront of introducing technology to improve surgical procedures and expedite treatments that can sometimes be the deciding factor between life and death. I would also like to thank the cardiac intervention staff at RAK Hospital for their speed of action, skills and expertise. »