What is an Automatic Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (AICD)?
An Automatic Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (AICD) is similar to a pacemaker, in that it is a small self-contained metal box which holds a battery, circuitry, and wire electrodes. Also, like a pacemaker, the electrodes are passed down to the heart through the veins under your collarbone. The AICD continuously monitors your heartbeat, and will deliver an electrical pulse to restore normal heart rhythm when necessary.
Unlike a pacemaker, this device typically only requires one electrical pulse delivered to the heart in order to restore a normal heartbeat. This device can be used to help treat cardiac arrest because it is constantly monitoring for abnormal heart rhythms.
Procedure and Recovery Information for Automatic Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (AICD):
The implantation procedure can take about 2 hours to perform, and you will have a scar about 3 inches across.
The recovery time can be up to 4 to 6 weeks, with most patients being able to return to semi-normal activity after about 2 weeks.