You may currently have a heart device, or you may have been told by your doctor that you could potentially need a heart device sometime in the future. Boston Scientific makes a wide range of devices that will help protect you and your heart. Our goal is to get you back to the life you want, so all our devices are designed with your health and comfort in mind. Having a heart condition can raise concerns but we’re here to answer your questions and make sure you get excellent treatment. Your tomorrow starts here.

Keep in mind that every medical experience is unique and there are risks associated with any medical procedure. It's important to discuss your specific needs with your doctor.

defibrillator

Defibrillators
And How They Work

Patients all over the country are being fitted with ICD's and CRT-D's to treat various conditions, ranging from irregular heart rhythms and heart failure to cardiac arrest.

An Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator or ICD uses electrical pulses to help correct heart arrhythmias. A Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Defibrillator or CRT-D is similar, while also doing the work of a pacemaker—using a low-energy electrical charge to ensure the heart beats at a healthy and regular pace.

This is a common surgery that can provide major health improvements. And in most cases, you have a choice about when it takes place and which brand of device you receive. For your specific health needs, please talk to your doctor.

What will happen if I need a shock

Boston Scientific devices use highly sophisticated algorithms to sense your heart's rhythms and deliver the therapy your doctor prescribed for you. This means they will send a charge to your heart if it's necessary to save your life. But whenever possible, our devices will allow your heart to beat on its own.

reliable lasting thin

The Thinnest
Heart Devices Available

Most heart defibrillators will provide adequate therapy but that doesn't mean they're all alike. At Boston Scientific we work with patients, building devices that are designed to be the thinnest, longest-lasting, and most comfortable for patients.1-4

Will people know I have a device?

Because Boston Scientific makes the thinnest heart devices available, it may not be visible beneath your skin or clothes. After you recover from the implant procedure, you should be able to resume most or all the activities you enjoy, after talking with your doctor first.

Built Thin To Last

Boston Scientific heart devices are designed with a smooth, rounded shape are 41% thinner than devices from St. Jude Medical1 and 53% thinner than devices from Medtronic2-4 — yet our battery is still projected to be the longest lasting.

Compare:

See the Difference

Our thinner, more rounded defibrillator device was designed to be more comfortable inside your body and less likely to show beneath your skin and clothes. Compare Boston Scientific to Medtronic and St. Jude Medical defibrillator devices. The difference shows.

battery

A Battery That Really Matters

All pacemakers and defibrillators have batteries. When the battery runs out, the old device has to be swapped out for a new device. There's no changing this battery without surgery. That's why we at Boston Scientific have poured years of research into creating a battery that's projected to be the longest lasting. Our goal is fewer surgeries, lower cost, and less risk of infection and surgical complications for our patients.

With every surgery, there are associated risks. Talk to your doctor to discuss your individual treatment and possible risks.

All manufacturers report heart device performance data on their websites. This data is called the "Product Performance Report."

Medtronic’s product performance report (PPR) shows that their heart devices for heart failure patients (CRT-Ds) are projected to last 4.4 years5.

Boston Scientific’s product performance report (PPR) shows that our heart devices for heart failure patients (CRT-Ds) are projected to last 8.1 years6.

Heart Device Leads

The leads are wires that conduct electrical energy from your heart device to your heart; patients can go through several device change-outs and in many cases use the same leads. Boston Scientific’s RELIANCE® leads have the industry's highest survival rate at 8 years7.

We use multiple insulation layers on our leads that are designed to reduce abrasion and wire fracture. RELIANCE’s reliability rate is 98.6%7.

What Defibrillator Patients Are Saying



If you have a Boston Scientific ICD or CRT-D, we would love to hear your story.

With all medical procedures there are risks associated. In regard to an implanted ICD, the risks include but are not limited to inappropriate shock, lead moves out of place, loss of stimulation capability, allergic reaction, fluid underneath the skin, and infection. In rare cases device failure or death can occur.

pacemaker

Pacemakers
And How They Work

If you need a pacemaker, you're not alone. Approximately 400,000 pacemakers and defibrillators are implanted each year in the United States, and there are currently more than 3 million patients with implanted pacemakers and defibrillators8. It is a safe, routine and relatively fast procedure that requires only a small incision near the collarbone.

You may be advised to get a pacemaker because your heart sometimes beats too slowly ("bradycardia"). A pacemaker will ensure your heart can beat fast enough to respond to your body's oxygen needs.

A pacemaker is small — about the size and thickness of a large watch face. You won't even know it when it's pacing you heart. Most pacemaker patients leave the hospital in 1-2 days and feel better within a few weeks.

All surgeries have risks associated with them and you should make sure you understand those risks. If you have questions about your treatment or pacemaker procedure, please contact your doctor.

Can I use my microwave and other household appliances?

Your implanted heart rhythm device is designed to work properly around most appliances and equipment. Most things you handle or work near every day will not cause a problem. However, people with all types of implanted devices do need to be aware that their device can be affected by electromagnetic interference (EMI). Ask your doctor for information regarding specific appliance, tool, or equipment interactions that may be typical.

Pacing Your Heart At The Right Rate

When you exert yourself two things should happen. You should breathe faster, taking in more oxygen, and your heart should beat more quickly. This is a complex process. Boston Scientific pacemakers use a sophisticated "minute ventilation" sensor that monitors your breathing and detects the need for a higher heart rate. Some other pacemakers only have a sensor that responds to motion; these devices don't monitor your breathing and may not raise your heart rate enough for activities including carrying groceries, climbing stairs, vacuuming, swimming, or riding a stationary bike.

gardening walking swimming

What Pacemaker Patients Are Saying



If you have a Boston Scientific pacemaker, we would love to hear your story.

With all medical procedures there are risks associated. In regard to an implanted ICD, the risks include but are not limited to inappropriate heart rate response to exercise, lead moves out of place, loss of stimulation capability, allergic reaction, fluid underneath the skin, and infection. In rare cases device failure or death can occur.

see the difference

Heart Device Surgery

Every surgery is serious. But this procedure is safe and usually takes less than two hours to complete. Your physician will discuss the details of your unique case with you. But in most situations, patients are in the hospital for only a day or two.

During the procedure, you'll be monitored closely. Your surgeon will go in under the skin near the collarbone to create a "pocket" for the cardiac device. Leads are attached to the heart muscle and then connected to the device itself. Then the incision is closed up and you will spend a little time in recovery before you go home. Once back home, you may need to take it easy for a few weeks, but you should be able to resume most or all the activities you enjoy.

Our devices allow for remote monitoring so, if prescribed by the doctor, specific information about your heart and the device may be sent to a secure website that only your health care support team can view. This allows your doctor to see changes sooner and contact you, if needed.

It's important to remember that every treatment and recovery is unique and you should discuss the potential risks and side effects with your doctor.

How much choice do I have
when it comes to heart devices?

Unless you're implanted during an emergency surgery, you do have a choice about which heart device you receive. And it's important to know that not all devices are the same. Of course, appropriate treatment comes first. But you and your doctor should discuss your concerns and choose the device that will work best for you overall. You'll be the one living with your choice. Make sure it fits your body, your condition and your life.

Talking To Your Doctor

You have a valuable expert at your side. We know from experience that doctors care deeply about their patients. They also care about what patients want. So we encourage you to ask questions, including the ones below.


The following are questions many patients have when they're told they need a heart device. You may see some of your own questions on this list. Print it out and take it to your doctor appointment to help start the conversation and make you feel at ease.

Bring These Defibrillator Questions To Your Doctor

1. Which device will best fit my body type and why?


2. How long will my defibrillator last?


3. What are the major differences between heart device manufacturers?


4. What should I expect to feel when my device delivers a shock?


5. Will I be able to feel the device through my skin?


6. Will other people be able to see or feel it?


7. What’s involved in getting a replacement device?


8. What are the most common risks associated with getting a defibrillator?


Bring These Pacemaker Questions To Your Doctor

1. What does my pacemaker do? How will it improve my life and my health?


2. How does the device know how fast to pace my heart?


3. I’ve been tired and out-of-breath for a long time. How will a pacemaker help?


4. Will it keep my heart rate in-sync with my breathing?


5. Will I be able to walk, shop, or play with my grandchildren without becoming out-of-breath?


6. Will my pacemaker provide a fast enough heart rate for me to exercise?


7. Will I be able to feel the pacemaker inside my chest?


8. What happens when the pacemaker runs out of battery power? How will my doctor know?


9. Do I have or am I at risk for chronotropic incompetence?


10. How long will my pacemaker last?


11. What does my pacemaker feel like when it is working?


12. What are the most common risks associated with getting a pacemaker?


Bring These General Questions To Your Doctor

1. How will I feel after surgery?


2. How long will I be in the hospital?


3. Is it safe to use electrical appliances or microwaves?


4. When can I resume sex?


5. Can I exercise or travel? If so, are there any restrictions?


6. Will I be able to feel the pacemaker inside my chest?


7. Will I be able to go through airport security?


8. Is my device always pacing?


Take These Questions With You

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Tell Us
Your Heart Device Story

If you have successfully received a heart device and you're back to enjoying your life, you can be an inspiration to thousands of people who are newly diagnosed. We'd love to showcase your experience and wisdom on our site.

Please give us your name and email address and tell us what happened in your own words. Someone may be in touch to verify facts or request a photo. Thank you in advance for sharing your story. You're helping give hope and confidence to people all over the world.

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Sources

1 St. Jude Medical Bradycardia and Tachycardia Devices Help Manual (40006531A, 02/10)

2 Medtronic Protect™ VR Clinician Manual (M936853A001, 10/19/10)

3 Medtronic Protecta™ DR Clinician Manual (M936848A001, 10/19/10)

4 Medtronic Protecta CRT-D Clinician Manual (M936842A001, 10/19/10)

5 Medtronic CRM Product Performance Report, 2012 CDRM Product Performance eSource, data cut-off August 6, 2012

6 Boston Scientific CRM Q2 2012 Product Performance Report, data cut-off October 8, 2012

7 Survival rate is comprised of all RELIANCE and RELIANCE G models combined as one population. Data source and data cut off is based on the BSC Q1 2012 Product Performance report. Data and calculations on file.

8 Buch MD, Eric, et al. "Pacemaker and Defibrillator Lead Extraction." Circulation 123 (2011): e378-e380. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/123/11/e378.full (accessed January 30, 2013).



Important Safety Information

Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Devices from Boston Scientific
Cardiac resynchronization therapy pacemakers (CRT-P) and defibrillators (CRT-D) are designed to treat heart failure patients who may or may not have symptoms (CRT-D), or who may have symptoms despite the best available drug therapy (CRT-P and CRT-D). They are also designed to help your heart pump more effectively and meet your body’s need for blood flow. CRT-P and CRT-D systems are not for everyone, including people with separate implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (CRT-P only) or certain steroid allergies. Procedure risks include infection, tissue damage, and kidney failure. Patients who should not receive this device include: patients who have additional medical conditions that may not allow the pacemaker to function appropriately (CRT-P only) and patients whose ventricular rhythm disturbances or heart failure have a reversible or temporary cause. In some cases, the device may be unable to detect or appropriately respond to your heart rhythm (CRT-P and CRT-D) or may deliver inappropriate shocks (CRT-D only). In rare cases severe complications or device failures can occur. Electrical or magnetic fields can affect the device. Only your doctor knows what is right for you. These devices are available by prescription only. Individual results may vary. Your physician should discuss all potential benefits and risks with you. For further safety information, refer to the Physicians Instructions for Use or call 1/866-484-3268.(Rev. G)

Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators from Boston Scientific
An implantable cardioverter defibrillator is designed to monitor and treat heart rhythm problems, greatly reducing the risks associated with them. But it is not for everyone, including people with certain steroid allergies. Procedure risks include infection, tissue damage, and kidney failure. Patients who should not receive this device include: patients whose ventricular rhythm disturbances have a reversible or temporary cause and patients with certain types of atrial rhythm disturbances. Procedure risks include infection and tissue damage. In some cases, the device may not respond to irregular heartbeats or may deliver inappropriate shocks. In rare cases severe complications or device failures can occur. Electrical or magnetic fields can affect the device. Only your doctor knows what is right for you. This device is available by prescription only. Individual results may vary. Your physician should discuss all potential benefits and risks with you. For further safety information, refer to the Physicians Instructions for Use or call 1/866-484-3268. (Rev. G)

Pacemakers from Boston Scientific
A pacemaker system is designed to monitor and treat your heart rhythm problems, greatly reducing the risks associated with them. But it is not for everyone, including patients with certain steroid allergies. Procedure risks include infection, tissue damage, and kidney failure. Patients who have additional medical conditions that may not allow the pacemaker to function appropriately should not receive a device. In rare cases severe complications or device failures can occur. Electrical or magnetic fields can affect the device. Only your doctor knows what is right for you. This device is available by prescription only. Individual results may vary. Your physician should discuss all potential benefits and risks with you. For further safety information, refer to the Physicians Instructions for Use or call 1/866-484-3268. (Rev. G)