An implantable loop recorder is used to record the electrical activity of the heart that is implanted just under your skin. This device is called “an implantable loop recorder.” The advantages of this implantable device is that the battery lasts about one year, and thus the device provides a method to record the heart rhythm in association with syncope. Another advantage of this device is that the recording period is much longer, so even if you lose consciousness, after you wake up, the loop recorder can be activated and it will still be able to record the heart rhythm at the time you passed out.
It is important to note that this device does not provide any therapy, but rather is only a means of recording the heart rhythm and this is quite helpful in trying to diagnose the cause of symptoms.
The implantation procedure for this device is quite simple and is often completed within 30 minutes and can be performed as an outpatient. After your symptoms are captured, or if the battery runs out, the monitor can be easily removed.
- Keep the incision site dry for seven to ten days.
- You may bathe or shower, as long as the site is kept dry and water does not directly hit the incision.
- You will need to have the incision checked in 10 – 14 days by your family physician or by a physician at our office.
- You will be given an activator to record your heart rhythm. If you experience symptoms of lightheadedness, palpitations or chest pain, you will activate the monitor and your heart rhythm will be recorded. We ask that you contact our office after you have activated the recorder so we can get you scheduled for an appointment. At this appointment, we will review the episode and determine if any abnormal heart rhythms were found.