Permanent pacemaker implantation via the femoral vein: an alternative in cases with contraindications to the pectoral approach
This paper presents a consecutive series of permanent pacemakers (PPM) implanted via the femoral vein in patients with contraindications to pacing systems via the superior vena cava (SCV). The femoral vein approach is a less invasive and feasible alternative to epicardial lead placement. Twenty-seven patients had femoral pacemakers inserted. Indications for femoral vein pacemaker insertion were: SVC/subclavian obstruction (12 patients, 44.4%), previous infection in SVC leads (four patients, 14.8%), mastectomy and/or radiotherapy to chest (four patients, 14.8%), multiple leads in SVC (two patients, 7.4%), recurrent erosion (two patients, 7.4%), abnormal anatomy (one patient, 3.7%), painful pacemaker pocket (one patient, 3.7%) and burns (one patient, 3.7%). Fifty-one leads, 25 atrial and 26 ventricular, were inserted. The majority of leads were active fixations (96% of atrial leads and 85% ventricular leads). During a mean follow-up of 36.5 months (range 0.9-116.5), six additional unplanned procedures were performed in four patients. Atrial lead displacement occurred in five leads (20%). There were no ventricular lead displacements. In two patients, box revision for pre-erosion was required. One patient had persistent pain at the...Continue Reading
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