Patients in Southwest Georgia needing services only a cardiac electrophysiologist can perform, can now get the treatment they need and recuperate close to home.
The heart consists of four blood-pumping chambers. The two upper chambers are called the right and left atria; the two lower chambers are called the right and left ventricles. The right atrium receives venous blood (oxygen-poor blood) from the body and pumps it into the right ventricle. The right ventricle pumps the oxygen-poor blood to the lungs to receive oxygen. The oxygen-rich blood from the lungs then travels to the left atrium and is pumped by the left atrium into the left ventricle. The left ventricle delivers the oxygen-rich blood to the rest of the body. In addition to oxygen, the blood carries nutrients (glucose, electrolytes, etc.) to the organs.
The heart must deliver a sufficient amount of blood to the body In order to keep it healthy.
As a pump, the heart is most efficient in delivering blood when functioning within a certain heart rate range. Normally, the heart's natural pacemaker called the SA node (a special tissue located on the right atria wall), keeps the heartbeat (heart rate) in the normal range. Electrical signals generated by the SA node travel along special conduction tissues on the walls of the atria and the ventricles. These electrical signals cause the heart muscles to contract and pump blood in an orderly and efficient manner.
Electrophysiology is the study of the electrical systems of the heart or abnormal heart rhythms.
Physicians say that more Southwest Georgians are suffering from irregular heartbeats. And for individuals with certain heart conditions an electrophysiologist can mean the difference between life and death.
When the electrophysiologist implants a biventricular defibrillator into a patient's heart, it helps coordinate and make the heart muscles that are still capable of pumping to pump in sync with each other -- generally using what is left more efficiently.
The Biventricular AICD (a biventricular pacemaker that has also been combined with an automatic implantable cardiac defibrillator) does the job of both a pacemaker and defibrillator, which is important work for damaged heart muscle that is pumping unevenly. The defibrillator resynchronizes the heart’s function to improve pumping efficiency.
For more information about heart treatment options or to schedule an appointment, please call the Phoebe Heart and Vascular Center at (229) 312-4438.