Cutting-edge pacemaker now available in South Bend
Memorial Hospital among first to implant MRI safe device.
Dr. Raman Mitra talks with the Memorial's first patient (2nd or 3rd in the nation), to receive an MRI safe pacemaker, Robert "Bob" O'Daniel of South Bend. Both patient and doctor were talking to media about the procedure on Thursday February 17, 2011. (Tribune Photo/SANTIAGO FLORES)
Dr. Raman Mitra, director of Memorial Leighton Heart & Vascular Center, performed the operation installing the new pacemaker — the Medtronic Revo MRI SureScan — this morning.
The recipient was Bob O'Daniel, 76, who was permitted to talk to the media just a few hours after the procedure. "I want to get back to the gym," he said.
Mitra said the new device is something that doctors have been waiting for because it allows patients to undergo an MRI or magnetic resonance imaging, which allows doctors to see internal organs, joints and muscles in order to help diagnose patients.
Patients who have traditional pacemakers are able to receive X-rays and computerized axial tomography (CAT scans) but not MRI's because of the magnetic field, Mitra said.
In the case of O'Daniel, the new device is important because he might need an MRI to help figure out what's wrong with his hip, which he injured a few months ago.
It's estimated that about 200,000 patients annually forego an MRI scan because of a pacemaker. The new device solves that problem.
"Medical imaging and electronic implantable devices such as pacemakers are important technological advances, particularly for older people," Mitra said. "We encourage our patients to talk to their doctor about which pacing system is right for them."