Loop Recorder Implantation

Loop Recorder Implantation is a process in which a ILR device is implanted in the body underneath the chest skin.

January 6, 2023

Loop Recorder Implantation is a process in which a ILR device is implanted in the body underneath the chest skin.

Some facts about Loop Recorder Implantation:

  • The most common usage of implantable loop recorder include looking for causes of fainting, palpitations, very fast or slow heartbeats, and hidden rhythms that can cause strokes.
  • A minor procedure is done by your cardiologist during a loop recorder implantation.
  • The small device will be placed under your skin, on your chest wall, overlying the heart.
  • The machine works as an electrocardiogram (ECG) by continuously picking up electrical signal from your heart which can help find abnormal heart rhythms that can cause a number of problems such as fainting.
  • A loop recorder implantation is required if you have fainting episodes or palpitations, and other tests have not yet given you any answers, since repeated fainting can have a negative effect on your physical and emotional health.
  • A pacemaker or an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICDs) is required once these fainting episodes are diagnosed.
  • A loop recorder is also required if your healthcare provider wants to look for very fast or slow heartbeats as these abnormal heartbeats can cause palpitations, or even lead to strokes.
  • All loop recorders generally come programmed to record certain fast and slow heart rates.
  • Loop recorders also come with a handheld activator that helps to save the signals collected over a certain period of time, which is important because it can also help explain if a fast or slow heartbeat is not what is causing your problems
  • You may need to keep your loop recorder for up to 2 or 3 years.
  • You will need to have it removed in a similar procedure when you no longer need it.

Preparation for Loop Recorder Implantation:

  • Your doctor should be notified if you are allergic to or are sensitive to any medications, latex, tape, iodine, or anesthetic agents (local and general).
  • Drinking anything including water and eating anything the night before the implantation is restricted.
  • Your doctor should be notified of all prescription and over-the-counter medications and herbal or other supplements that you are taking.
  • A blood test prior to the implantation may be done to determine how long it takes your blood to clot. 
  • A sedative may be given before the procedure to help you relax.
  • You may need to stay at least one night in the hospital after the procedure to ensure the pacemaker functions properly and  for observation .
  • Other specific preparation may be requested by your doctor based on your medical condition

Procedure for Loop Recorder Implantation:

  • Medicine will be given to help you relax and a local anesthetic will be put on your skin to numb it.
  • A small incision in your skin will be made by your cardiologist which is usually done in the left upper chest.
  • A small pocket under your skin will be created and the loop recorder will be placed in this pocket.
  • The machine is about the size of a flat AA battery.
  • Your incision will be closed with sutures and a bandage will be put on the area.