Pacemaker and ICD – I.D. Parade. Images of Pacemakers and ICD’s

Pacemaker and ICD Mugshots

The Mug Shots are in and the usual suspects are present! Apologies if your pacemaker or ICD does not feature these are all the ones I had to hand… Thought some of you might like to try and spot your device!

Can you identify your device? (or something similar). Remember ICD’s are similar sizes to one another, as are BiV devices and Single/Dual chamber Brady-devices!

Exhibit A – Single Chamber Pacemakers.

Single Chamber Pacemakers
These are your single chamber devices…
So VVI/AAI pacing normally associated with chronic AF or Sinus Arrest/Sinus Bradycardia. 
Dual Chamber Pacemakers
These are your dual chamber devices! Notice there are ports at the top (clear bits)  with room for 2 leads (atrium and ventricle) These are great for Heart Blocks and most problems where the atrium is still working well!

Exhibit C – A Biventricular Pacemaker

A Biventricular Pacemaker
Above we have the only example I had to hand of a BiV device which has 3 leads! One in your Atrium, one in your right ventricle and one in your left ventricle! These are used in heart failure patients and can help the heart pump more blood around the body!
Ready for the big boys?…

Exhibit D – A Collection of ICD’s

These are ICD’s they shock potentially lethal rhythms like VT and VF! To do this they deliver around 35-41J which is quite a punch so they need a big battery and a big capacitor! This is why they are so large and the image below shows how chunky they are too.
So as you can see there is a wide range of devices but the requirement of the device has the biggest impact on the size of the device! One day ICD’s will be smaller but lets just be glad they have come a long way since the original defibs!
Old Defibrillator
That really would leave a scar…
A complete explanation of pacemakers is available in the book Pacemakers Made Easy by Carl Robinson.
Right time to put that pound towards a Hot Chocolate
Thanks for reading,
Cardiac Technician
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici /

Comments 2

  1. Excellent article!!!! When I went to my Sudden Cardiac Arrest Support Group and saw the 1950's and prior versions of ICDs I was shocked! LOVE the pics above, especially the jumbo external ICD. Yes, they used to be BIG machines outside of your body, about the size of a 'fridge, then downsized to the size of a boom box. WOW! Big changes! INSIDE the body is awesome! Glad I got mine in 2011 rather than sooner! Curious to see what the future brings. Thanks for posting!

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