St. Mary’s Medical Center in Grand Junction offers a procedure to implant a smaller, leadless pacemaker to manage slow heart rhythms.
The Micra transcatheter pacing system offers advanced technology at one-tenth the size of traditional pacemakers and without leads from outside the heart.
The first Micra implantation at St. Mary’s took place in June. Dr. Richard Garmany is the only cardiologist implanting this type of pacemaker in Western Colorado and Eastern Utah.
The Micra can be placed through a vein in the leg without surgery, Garmany said. “Not having leads is a revolutionary development in pacemakers. Traditional leads are subjected to constant movement of the heart, leading to most problems with pacing systems, such as fracture or infections.”
The Micra is small enough to be delivered through a catheter and implanted with small tines, providing an alternative to traditional pacemakers without the complications associated with leads — all while being cosmetically invisible. The Micra battery is designed to last 10 to 12 years,
“With leadless pacemakers, there is no device under the skin, there are no incisions. And without leads there are fewer complications,” Garmany said. “Micra is smaller than a AAA battery, making the procedure and recovery easier for patients.”