This is an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) with a generator and a single lead. It is different from a traditional ICD as the lead is not placed inside the heart. The generator is placed on the side of the chest instead of the front of the chest wall, and the lead is tunneled under the skin along the breastbone.
ICDs are advised in specific patients who are at risk for potentially fatal ventricular arrhythmias (an abnormal rhythm from the lower heart chambers, which can cause the heart to pump less effectively). Unlike traditional ICDs, subcutaneous ICDs cannot function as pacemakers making them not appropriate for patients who require pacing.Previous Page Last Review Date: January 8, 2018