TYPES OF CARDIAC RESYNCHRONIZATION THERAPY DEVICES
If you have been diagnosed with heart failure, your doctor may recommend that you receive a cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) device, depending on your symptoms, type of heart failure and the severity of your condition. A CRT is a device implanted under the skin near your shoulder that stimulates the heart’s lower chambers, and often one upper chamber, so they are synchronized and more efficient in pumping blood to the body.
Two types of CRT devices are available for managing long-term heart failure, depending on your type of heart failure:
- Cardiac resynchronization therapy pacemakers (CRT-Ps)
- Cardiac resynchronization therapy implantable cardioverter defibrillators (CRT-Ds)
CARDIAC RESYNCHRONIZATION THERAPY PACEMAKERS (CRT-Ps)
A CRT-P is a pacemaker specialized for managing heart failure. Essentially a minicomputer, a pacemaker functions to replace the work of your heart’s natural pacemaker, the sinus node. With a pacemaker’s help, your heart can maintain a normal, healthy rhythm so it can circulate the amount of blood needed to meet your body’s need. Similar to a traditional pacemaker, the CRT-P helps keep your heart from beating too slowly or out of rhythm.
A traditional pacemaker has one or two leads (wires) that are placed into the right side of your heart. One lead is placed into the lower right chamber, called the right ventricle. A second lead may be placed into the right upper chamber, called the right atrium. A CRT-P has an additional lead placed on the left side of the heart to make the left ventricle beat at the same time as the right.