How is The Optimizer System different from other devices used to treat heart failure?
There are currently no other devices that provide a similar therapy to that of the Optimizer™. Pacemakers, defibrillators and CRT devices all work to resolve cardiac rhythm management problems or cardiac dyssynchrony. While CRT devices improve cardiac performance, they are beneficial in only a small subgroup of patients (around 30-40% of the CHF population) that have dyssynchrony. The Optimizer system is designed to modulate the strength of contraction of the heart muscle rather than its rhythm and is the only treatment that actually trains the heart.
How will the Optimizer IVs affect my day-to-day life?
Most patients that receive an Optimizer IVs implant start feeling a change in their level of performance just a few weeks after the implantation procedure. Activities such as walking and climbing steps frequently become easier and sensations of shortness of breath become less frequent. Patients may also find a reduction in the need to sit down and rest after performing simple activities, they may feel less tired and fatigued and may find a decline in the number of hospitalizations. These changes are the result of processes induced by the CCM pulses that affect the function and expression of certain proteins in the heart and, through that, modify the function of the heart muscle cells.
What should I expect during the Optimizer implant procedure?
Typically, the procedure for heart implant devices is performed under local anesthesia. It does not require open-heart surgery and most patients are discharged to their home after a couple of days, or sooner. Patients can expect to gradually return to everyday activities shortly after the procedure.
What kind of follow-up care can I expect after my device is implanted?
The doctor will prescribe a schedule of post-implant follow-ups which will become a regular part of each patient’s life. The charger has a small memory card that stores data about the implant’s activity. The physician or clinician will use a special programmer to interrogate this memory card in order to evaluate the amount of therapy delivered and optimize the delivery of CCM signals. Routine follow-up visits and monitoring help ensure that the device is meeting the patient’s health requirements.
When are CCM electric pulses delivered? Will I be able to feel them?
Unlike defibrillators and pacemakers, the Optimizer CCM pulses are delivered at regular intervals throughout the day and generally go unnoticed by implanted patients.
Is there insurance reimbursement for this treatment?
Yes, CCM therapy is reimbursed in Germany, Austria and Italy.