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Icd Fired 74 Times

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  • Icd Fired 74 Times

    Name: Clint
    Age: 39
    Diagnosis: Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy
    Device: Medtronics ICD – Marquis DR 7274 – set at 30 joules


    On the morning of August 21, 2004, I had decided to take my wife and two boys camping at my deer lease in deep east Texas. We packed our gear and necessities and headed out for what we expected to be an enjoyable overnight family trip. We live in Houston and our deer lease is approx 3 hours northeast of us by Jasper, Texas. My parents live halfway between the two points in Buna, so we stopped there to have lunch. My parents and nephew Zach said that they were going to ride up to the lease also, so my wife and kids decided they would ride with them. I told them that I was going to go ahead and get up there, fill the feeders with corn and that I would meet them at the campsite.

    Our lease is in the middle of 10,000+ acres of forest land. There is nothing around for miles, and no one to hear you if you holler for help. My feeders sit about 500 yards away from the road, down a steep hill and at the bottom of a ravine. To make matters worse, my feeder site is approx 2 ½ miles from the campsite. I arrived at the feeders, unloaded my four wheeler and headed down the hill, leaving my truck parked on the road. I began to fill the feeders and as I went to put the lid on the last one, I felt a jolt, saw a flash of light and fell to the ground. My initial thought, was I had been struck by lightning. I sat down and stayed there for 15 minutes before getting up. I was a bit shaken, but otherwise fine, so I stood up to get out of there. I took 2 steps and then I was hit again. This time I knew what it was. My ICD was going off and I wasn’t sure why. I didn’t recall my heart rate being high, but I lied down like I was instructed to do in the case that it did fire. Only the ICD didn’t stop. It continued to shock me even though I was trying to lie completely still. After what must have been the 30th shock, I called my parents cell phone only to get voice mail. It’s difficult to get service where we were at because of lack of towers. I decided then that I was either going to lie there and die or I was going to somehow make it to my truck and drive to the camp for help. So, I painstakingly began crawling up the hill on my hands and knees, with my ICD shocking me on average, every minute. After about 30 minutes, I made it to my truck. I knew that I couldn’t drive with the trailer still hitched to it, so I made my way around the back and unhitched the trailer, grabbed a bottle of water from the cooler and got in the truck. My ICD is still going off at this point. I drove the winding, dirt road 2 ½ miles and saw the campsite and my parents van! As I pulled up, I had to avoid running over the boys who were playing in the road. Later on the boys would tell me they thought that I was drunk because of the erratic driving. My mother and wife and taken a walk and my dad began waving at me from our camp house. I tried to signal to him that I needed help and he finally realized that something was wrong. He ran to the truck and started like for wounds as I was bleeding profusely from my mouth after having bit my tongue numerous times. He looked up at me and started to ask what was wrong and the ICD fired again for what would be the last time. I’ve never seen my father turn as pale as he did at that moment. He began yelling for my mother and wife and then jumped in the van to go get them. They were back in less than a minute and my wife grabbed the phone and called 911. The ambulance arrived 8 minutes later, shot me up with 6 ccs of some medication that slowed my heart rate and drove me to the Newton, TX airport where life flight was waiting. I was flown to Beaumont to be stabilized at 8:00 p.m. and then grounded due to bad weather. The initial flight plan was to fly directly to Methodist hospital in Houston. The Medtronics technician in Beaumont evaluated my ICD and asked to shake my hand because she had never seen anything like this. Around 2 a.m. Sunday morning we were cleared too take off. I arrived at Methodist around 3 a.m. and was immediately placed in I.C.U. My doctor arrived approx at 10 a.m. and started to review the Medtronics graphs and notes. (NOTE: my doctor is a world renowned electro-physiologist. This is not a man who confuses easily!). We watched for an hour as he shook his head and scribbled things down. Finally he came in the room and said that he could see no real reason for the episode to have occurred. The thought was that the ICD mistook a Sinus Tach for a V-Tach and fired thinking it was correcting an abnormal beat. Well, since there was no abnormal beat, the first shock set my heart out of rhythm, and then continued to fire to correct the mistake. It took it 74 times to reset my heart beat.

    I was released from the hospital on Monday, August 23, 2004 with no permanent heart damage, no medical reason for the incident and what my family believes to be post traumatic stress disorder. I am taking Tredozone to sleep and have not gotten over the fear that I was about to die. I go back to the Dr. on 9/02/04 and hope to get more answers then. I will update this later and let everyone know what we found out. IS THERE ANY BODY OUT THERE EVER HEARD OF THIS
    good heath to all

  • #2
    Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

    WOW, that was incredable, I believe you must hold the record for most incredable story I have read on this board.
    So glad you made it out to tell the story.
    I can just see your kids when they take their kids camping.
    The story around the camp fire "Did I ever tell you the story of when we went camping with grampa?"
    Good Luck & Stay Well!
    Every great thing that has ever happened since the beginning of time has started as a single thought in someones mind.
    So if you are capable of thought then you are capable of great things
    Good luck and stay well.
    Glen

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

      My gosh, Clint! What a nightmare!! I haven't heard of being shocked so many times in a row like that but I have heard of inappropriate shocks. While they were interrogating everything, did they also check the leads? Sometimes those go bad and they make the readings go askew. I'm sorry you had to live with that!

      Reenie
      Reenie

      ****************
      Husband has HCM.
      3 kids - ages 23, 21, & 19. All presently clear of HCM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

        All I can say is WOW!!!.It is not often that I am speechless.
        Pam
        Dx @ 47 with HOCM & HF:11/00
        Guidant ICD:Mar.01, Recalled/replaced:6/05 w/ Medtronic device
        Lead failure,replaced 12/06.
        SF lead recall:07,extracted leads and new device 2012
        [email protected] Tufts, Boston:10/5/03; age 50. ( [email protected] 240 mmHg ++)
        Paroxysmal A-Fib: 06-07,2010 controlled w/sotalol dosing
        Genetic mutation 4/09, mother(d), brother, son, gene+
        Mother of 3, grandma of 3:Tim,27,Sarah,33w/6 y/o old Sophia, 5 y/o Jack, Laura 34, w/ 5 y/o old Benjamin

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

          Clint,

          What an ordeal for you to go through! I've heard of ICD misfires before, but never that many. I think the current record on the board is thirty-some times in one day, and you've got that beat by a mile. Thank God it all ended well for you. Please let us know what you find out, as i'm sure there are many folks here who will be interested in the outcome.

          Take care,

          Jim
          "Some days you're the dog... some days you're the hydrant."

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

            Originally posted by Pam Alexson
            All I can say is WOW!!! It is not often that I am speechless.
            LOL, Pam... no comment necessary.

            <smooch>

            Jim
            "Some days you're the dog... some days you're the hydrant."

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

              Jim,
              You are a clown and it is a good thing for you that I put up with you. I AM A VERY QUIET PERSON OF FEW WORDS. Now everyone can see that RIGHT????
              Pam
              Dx @ 47 with HOCM & HF:11/00
              Guidant ICD:Mar.01, Recalled/replaced:6/05 w/ Medtronic device
              Lead failure,replaced 12/06.
              SF lead recall:07,extracted leads and new device 2012
              [email protected] Tufts, Boston:10/5/03; age 50. ( [email protected] 240 mmHg ++)
              Paroxysmal A-Fib: 06-07,2010 controlled w/sotalol dosing
              Genetic mutation 4/09, mother(d), brother, son, gene+
              Mother of 3, grandma of 3:Tim,27,Sarah,33w/6 y/o old Sophia, 5 y/o Jack, Laura 34, w/ 5 y/o old Benjamin

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                Clint,

                Please call Lisa when she gets back from vacation next week as she knows more than anybody about the anomolies of HCM stuff like this.

                You should also check out www.zaplife.org, a site devoted to ICD-owners.

                I'm very sorry your ICD malfunctioned so badly and hope that you are able to get past it.

                hang in there,

                Sarah

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                  Clint, I'm sorry for the ordeal you've been thru. You've got stamina beyond the norm to have been able to still get to the help you needed. I've seen misfiring situations in the ER in patients before, and one that I vividly remember, similar to yours. I doubt that it fired that many times, but when you work in a small hospital that needs to have the programing equipment brought in, it seems to take an awful long time for the equipment to get there. That was several years ago and things have changed tremendously since - the equipment is more available, the ICD technology has improved, more meds are coming out to treat arrythmias, etc. I'm so glad 911 was able to help as quickly as they could. For being so isolated, that seems like an unbelievable time! Hopefully, with learning the cause, you will get the reassurance you need to help you move beyond this and once again be able to count on this device as the lifesaver it can be. My son was 16 when he had an unnecessary shock. It was only one, so there's a big difference, but I was really proud of the way he has been able to deal with it. He put it right back on the doctor - " It's your job to see to it that this thing functions right. Now make sure it does. I'm not missing anymore school because of it." - or something similar. Sometimes, just acting in control makes you feel in control and gets you thru the rough time till you find another way to cope. I wish you the best, Linda

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                    Hey Clint,
                    On the one hand I think what you went through is absolutely shocking, but on the other hand, you’re still here to tell the story – so it couldn’t be all bad. If you are ever faced with that again, clench your teeth for as long as you can – save your tongue for talking, and things like that. 74 times - seems odd - but it's even.

                    As a kid reading western thrillers they always portrayed Texans as tough. I thought it was just a story line, guess I was wrong. Under a heavy bombardment you got up, crawled up a hill, got into your truck, and drove to the campsite. Now that’s something. I can very well understand exactly what you were thinking, but if it ever happens again, call 911 first, and alert your family after. I’m sure that’s what they would want you to do.

                    I don’t go out of the house without my cell phone – except on rare occasions when I forget, but my wife also carries one and if I’ve forgotten mine I don’t leave her. It’s always that one time when you’re unprepared that the fit hits the Shan.

                    This is for everybody, I just saw a device advertised on TV by a home security company – I forget which – ADT maybe? – anyway it’s a small transmitter that sits in your car. If you push the button you are in contact with the operator, and it’s also an exact position finder. (You can monitor where the vehicle is from your home computer also.) The service is advertised for less then a dollar a day and may be of great help for people who need to be in touch if help is needed, for monitoring your kid’s whereabouts, and for women who travel alone, among other uses. It shows it working through a satellite, so it should work in places where your cell phone won’t. Seems to me it would be an economical safety net for those who need it. Just thought I’d pass that on.
                    Burt

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                      your story really freaked me out. I just recieved a icd implant in march of this year. I havnt been shockd yet. amazing how that could of happened.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                        Clint

                        You must be a good man, they would have taken it out of me after74 zapps, hope you are doing better just take it easy and i hope they reset the ICD for you

                        Shirley
                        Diagnosed 2003
                        Myectomy 2-23-2004
                        Husband: Ken
                        Son: John diagnosed 2004
                        Daughter: Janet (free of HCM)

                        Grandchildren: Drew 15,Aaron 13,Karen 9,Connor 9

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                          Well, I have heard many stories - but never over 70 shocks - the most I had heard of was 25 over 2 days. In that case the first 2 were appropriate and the rest were comuputer errors.

                          Clint - You have been though a heck of and ordeal and I am sure it is going to take sometime for you and your entire family to process it and recover. I am sorry you had to endure such an event. I have had an ICD for 7 years and I have thankfully not encountered anything like this. I know 100's of people with devices and only a handful have had inappriopriate shocks mostly due to programming errors and I know of under 10 that have no explaination or the shocks - You my dear have officially topped my list of the "no explaination" list.

                          I wish you good health and a nice relaxing few days.


                          Be well,
                          Lisa
                          Knowledge is power ... Stay informed!
                          YOU can make a difference - all you have to do is try!

                          Dx age 12 current age 46 and counting!
                          lost: 5 family members to HCM (SCD, Stroke, CHF)
                          Others diagnosed living with HCM (or gene +) include - daughter, niece, nephew, cousin, sister and many many friends!
                          Therapy - ICD (implanted 97, 01, 04 and 11, medication
                          Currently not obstructed
                          Complications - unnecessary pacemaker and stroke (unrelated to each other)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                            All I can say is GOD BLESS YOU!
                            Jen

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Icd Fired 74 Times

                              Hi Clint,

                              That is really scary to say the least. I just had my icd put in two months ago and I am a little anxious about if it will ever fire.

                              That really must of been one heck of an expierence. I hope all is well now and stays that way.

                              Comment

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