Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Geriatr Cardiol. 2013 Mar;10(1):3-9. doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1671-5411.2013.01.002.

Implantable defibrillator lead extraction with optimized standard extraction techniques.

Author information

  • 1Department of Cardiac Electrophysiology, Peking University People's Hospital, Beijing 100044, China ; Department of Cardiology, the Affiliated Hospital of Medical College, Qingdao University, Qingdao 266100, China.



Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) leads might not be extracted especially in developing countries because of the high cost and lack of specialized tools. We aimed to evaluate transvenous extraction of ICD leads using optimized standard techniques.


We prospectively analyzed clinical characteristics, optimized extraction techniques and the feasibility of extraction for 40 patients (33 males; mean age 47.9 ± 16.1 years) with 42 ICD leads.


Complete procedural success rate was 95.2% (40/42), and the clinical success rate was 97.6% (41/42). One ICD lead required cardiothoracic surgery. Minor complications occurred in three cases (7.5%), and no major complications or death occurred. Locking stylets were used to extract most leads (34, 81.0%) and almost half of the leads (20, 47.6%) required mechanical dilatation to free fibrotic adhesions; these leads had been implanted for a longer period of time than the others (43.7 ± 18.2 vs. 18.4 ± 13.4 months, P < 0.05). Three-quarters of the leads (30, 71.4%) were extracted with locking stylets plus manual traction (12, 28.6%), or mechanical dilatation with counter-traction (18, 42.8%) by the superior vena cava approach and one-quarter of the leads (11, 26.2%) were removed by optimized snare techniques using the femoral vein approach. Median extraction time was 20 min (range 2-68 min) per lead. Linear regression analysis showed that the extraction time was significantly correlated with implant duration (r = 0.70, P < 0.001). Median follow-up was 14.5 months (range 1-58 months), no infection, or procedure-related death occurred in our series.


Our optimized procedure for transvenous extraction of ICD leads provides a practical and low-cost method for standard procedures.


Complications; Extraction; Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator; Infection; Lead

Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk