Husband gets Micra AV pacemaker

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catwoman

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My husband got his first (and probably only) pacemaker on Monday, Feb. 17, at Baylor Scott & White All Saints Medical Center in Fort Worth TX. He got a Medtronic Micra AV. He was the first person to get this new PM in the Fort Worth area. I posted about this on my FB page, but did not mention my husband’s other medical issues.

So far, I am thrilled with the outcome and much to be thankful for. So many medical professionals went to bat for my husband to get this.

This is a dual-chamber lead-less, transcatheter PM. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration approved it Jan. 21, 2020, and Medicare approved coverage Feb. 13 — 4 days before my husband’s procedure. According to an article at bioworld.com, it won’t be in widespread use until late April. Medtronics is now working to train EPs.

Our cardiologist, Mohanakrishnan Sathyamoorthy (aka Dr. Mo), and the electrophysiologist, Aleem Mughal, pulled a lot of strings to get this approved for my husband. At the EP consult on Jan. 28, Dr. Mughal said he would implant the single-chamber Micra (approved in 2016), but if the Micra AV got Medicare’s green light by Jan. 17, he would implant that one. I wasn’t holding my breath.

My husband was not the ”normal” PM candidate. John, who will be 74 next month, was diagnosed 8 years ago with early onset Alzheimer’s. He was able to work until age 69 1/2. He had MV repair in May 2007 to replace chordae that ruptured in a car crash.

After my husband had worn several event monitors and had a 911 crisis at a Walmart in 2019, our cardiologist said it was to consider a pacemaker. Because of the Alzheimer’s, it was not an easy decision for me, his medical POA.

If any of you have a loved one with dementia, you know that hospital stays are usually, if not always, a nightmare. General anesthesia often exacerbates dementia (think permanent ICU psychosis).

The anesthesiologist used the same anesthesia and amount that was used by amother doctor in 2016 when John had hernia repair. Sitters were brought in until he was discharged Tuesday around noon. I stayed overnight.

Dr. Mughal removed the single stitch at the entry point Tuesday morning and said the deeper tissue was already healing. He’ll recheck the wound on Thursday (Feb. 27). He will recheck John on March 20 and Dr. Mo will take over from there.

So far, it appears we’ve dodged the bullet on a sudden cognitive decline. (WHEW!) He has more energy throughout most of the day and looks younger in the face. He says he feels better. He has had no discomfort or pain whatsoever.

I have much to be thankful for. First of all, setting the date for Feb. 17, right after the Medicare approval.
He had a great EP who was caring and excited to do this procedure.
We also have a spectacular cardiologist. Dr. Mo is director of cardiology, chief of the medical staff and chief of the cardiovascular division at Baylor All Saints.
These men knew a traditional pacemaker would be the wrong choice for a dementia patient. Dr. Mughal considers taking dementia patients on a case-by-case basis.

Now we can resume plans to travel by car and plane. To enjoy more of life while we can. And not have to worry about another medical crisis.

I am attaching a photo taken at a restaurant 3 days after his procedure.
887313
 

Catie

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Jun 17, 2010
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Texas, USA
Marsha, that's a remarkable story of how your husband came to receive that particular, cutting-edge pacemaker. It all sounds right on time, and to have so many details align to make this happen, is glorious! Congratulations and kudos to you for persevering to get him the best possible outcome! I'm glad you have such wonderful medical professionals in your (and his) corner.

It's brilliant news, too, that he was able to avoid complications from the anesthesia. I participate in a couple of caregivers' groups, and several members have seen loved ones' cognition dramatically decline after surgeries.

He looks great in the photo, and man, that is my kind of meal! Your dear husband is truly blessed with your love and all your vigilant care. Hope things continue to go very well!
 

Protimenow

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I wasn't aware that Chinese restaurants served mexican rice and refried beans.

Your husband looks great.

(I'm curious - do you have any idea how much they charge for a pacemaker?)
 
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catwoman

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Marsha, that's a remarkable story of how your husband came to receive that particular, cutting-edge pacemaker. It all sounds right on time, and to have so many details align to make this happen, is glorious! Congratulations and kudos to you for persevering to get him the best possible outcome! I'm glad you have such wonderful medical professionals in your (and his) corner.

It's brilliant news, too, that he was able to avoid complications from the anesthesia. I participate in a couple of caregivers' groups, and several members have seen loved ones' cognition dramatically decline after surgeries.

He looks great in the photo, and man, that is my kind of meal! Your dear husband is truly blessed with your love and all your vigilant care. Hope things continue to go very well!
Catie,
We were at El Fenix on Camp Bowie Blvd. in Fort Worth. Yum!
 

catwoman

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I wasn't aware that Chinese restaurants served mexican rice and refried beans.

(I'm curious - do you have any idea how much they charge for a pacemaker?)
[/QUOTE
I wasn't aware that Chinese restaurants served mexican rice and refried beans.

(I'm curious - do you have any idea how much they charge for a pacemaker?)
ProTime,
I haven’t seen figures on what a Micra AV goes for. My husband is a retired Texas state employee (higher education) and insurance (a Medicare Advantage group plan) should cover everything 100%. When we get that info, I will post it.
 

Protimenow

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Yes, I assumed that insurance probably paid for it. I suspect that, should I ever need one, my insurance would probably also pay for it.
 

catwoman

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Messages
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near Fort Worth TX
Yes, I assumed that insurance probably paid for it. I suspect that, should I ever need one, my insurance would probably also pay for it.
Protime,
I found one medical paper published in April 2018 about the single-chamber Micra that gave a $10,000 cost for that device. That paper involved the first implantations in Hawaii.
There is no retrieval system for the Micra (or Micra AV, I am sure).
St. Jude Medical has a leadless single-chamber PM, but issues were encountered during trials, which were halted.
 

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