For patients with heart disease who are at risk for getting dangerous heart rhythms or who have already demonstrated such rhythms, Duke offers comprehensive care to prevent sudden cardiac death (SCD) and improve quality of life.
The damage that happens during a heart attack can lead to electrical instability, putting patients at risk of SCD.
To prevent SCD, Duke offers the latest medical therapies as well as implantable devices that can detect and terminate abnormal rhythms.
For those who have already demonstrated dangerous heart rhythms, catheter ablation for ventricular tachycardia is an option as a means to help control symptoms.
These therapies may be used alone or in combination, tailored to a patient's individual needs.
A wide range of implantable devices are offered, including:
At Duke, patients receive more than 400 pacemakers and 700 implantable defibrillators each year.
In most cases, pacemakers and ICDs can be implanted non-surgically by inserting leads in the heart through a vein under the collarbone. Cardiothoracic surgeons are available to assist with open placement of pacemaker leads if necessary.
Duke Heart Center physicians have special expertise in complex catheter ablation procedures. The latest catheter ablation techniques are also available, including:
Duke’s experienced physicians conduct cutting-edge research to develop new devices, and patients can often benefit by participating in clinical trials.
Augustus Grant, MD, and James P. Daubert, MD, offer the weekly Inherited Arrhythmia Clinic for patients with a family history of sudden cardiac death, patients who have already experienced a near-fatal arrhythmia with no clear cause, and those diagnosed with or suspected to have long QT syndrome (LQTS), Brugada syndrome, or catecholaminergic polymorphic ventrical tachycardia (CPVT).
These specialists also see patients with certain heart-muscle disorders (cardiomyopathies) -- including arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy/dysplasia (ARVC/D), hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and other inherited cardiomyopathies. These patients are highly prone to arrhythmias and an elevated risk of sudden cardiac death.
Genetic testing and interpretation of the results may be performed.
For more information about the Inherited Arrhythmia Clinic, call 919-681-3776.
Make an appointment with a Duke heart specialist near you: 888-ASK-DUKE (888-275-3853).
Physicians offering this service include:
This service is available at: