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2013 Press Releases
St. Anthony Hospital offers newly approved S-ICD system for patients at risk of sudden cardiac arrest
12/11/2013

Lakewood, Colo. (Dec. 11, 2013) – St. Anthony Hospital is among the first in Colorado to offer a new breakthrough cardiovascular technology — subcutaneous implantable defibrillator (S-ICD) for the treatment of patients at risk for sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). 


Subcutaneous implantable defribillator - St. Anthony Hospital - Dr. SvinarichThe S-ICD System, developed by Boston Scientific, is designed to provide the same protection from SCA as transvenous implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs). However, this entire device sits just below the skin and eliminates the need for thin, insulated wires known as electrodes or “leads” to be placed into the heart itself. This leaves the heart and blood vessels untouched (see graphic attached).  


“The biggest benefit of S-ICD is that it eliminates problems associated with the intravenous leads,” said cardiologist Thomas Svinarich, MD, FACC, with St. Anthony Hospital. “Leads implanted in the heart and blood vessels are constantly moving. Electrode wires wear out and have to be replaced. Here, we have a subcutaneous lead — under the skin, on the chest — that isn’t subject to those stresses. So we expect patient complications, in the long run, to be much reduced.”


Svinarich said, “Candidates for this system include younger patients, active patients, patients prone to infection and patients likely to have a long life span following implantation.”


“We’re very excited to be one of the first hospitals in the region to offer the S-ICD. It’s a very important breakthrough,” said Svinarich.


Sudden cardiac arrest is an abrupt loss of heart function. Most episodes are caused by the rapid and/or chaotic activity of the heart known as ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation. It’s estimated that approximately 850,000 people in the United States are at risk for SCA and could benefit from an ICD device.


The S-ICD System has two main components. The pulse generator powers the system, monitors heart activity and delivers an electric pulse, if needed, to stop an abnormal heart rhythm. The electrode enables the device to sense the problematic cardiac rhythm and deliver the corrective shock. Both components are implanted just under the skin — the generator at the side of the chest, just under the armpit, and the electrode beside the breastbone.


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About St. Anthony Hospital


St. Anthony Hospital is nationally recognized for its renowned programs in trauma, cardiovascular services, oncology, neurosciences and orthopedics. St. Anthony Hospital’s expert team of physicians, nurses and other caregivers provide unparalleled medical care for patients and access to the latest in medical technology. St Anthony Hospital is part of Centura Health, which connects individuals, families and neighborhoods across Colorado and western Kansas with more than 6,000 physicians and 16,200 of the best hearts and minds in health care. For more information on the St. Anthony Medical Campus, please visit www.stanthonyhosp.org or follow the hospital via Twitter @stahospital and facebook.com/stahospital.


 

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