World’s Smallest Pacemaker Offers Big Benefits

San Juan Regional Medical Center is now offering the world’s smallest pacemaker. Micra™ VR and Micra™ AV Transcatheter Pacing Systems are leadless pacemaker option for patients who only require pacing in the right ventricle. Not only is the pacemaker leadless, it’s one-tenth the size of traditional pacemakers, leaving no visible sign or physical reminder of a medical device under the skin.

Dr. Stephen Bernard placed the first Micra leadless pacemaker at San Juan Regional Medical Center in late October. It’s something he’s wanted to bring to patients here for a long time.

“I see it as an advantage. Prior to getting the Micra, we would have to send a patient who needs this type of device out of the area. Now we can offer this here at home. This makes it much easier on patients,” Dr. Bernard said. 

During the implant procedure, the device is attached to the heart with small tines and delivers electrical impulses that pace the heart through an electrode at the end of the device. Unlike traditional pacemakers, Micra does not require leads or a surgical "pocket" under the skin, so potential sources of complications related to leads and pockets are eliminated. Additional benefits for patients include:

  • Implantation and home the same day
  • No chest scar or bump
  • Fewer post-implant activity restrictions
  • Less risk of infection

The pacemaker’s battery life is eight to 10 years, which is a little less than a traditional pacemaker. To find out more about the world’s smallest pacemakers contact San Juan Regional Heart Center at 505.609.6770. 

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