Patent Number: 7,103,411

Title: Methods and apparatus for preventing atrial arrhythmias by overdrive pacing multiple heart tissue sites using an implantable cardiac stimulation device

Abstract: Techniques are described for pacing multiple sites in a patient's heart using overdrive pacing the heart using a pacemaker including techniques where the overdrive pacing rate only increases when at least two intrinsic beats are detected within a determined search period. In one specific technique, an increase in the pacing rate occurs only if two P-waves are detected within X cardiac cycles. In another specific technique, the overdrive pacing rate is increased only if at least two P-waves are detected within a block of N cardiac cycles. In both techniques, the overdrive pacing rate is decreased if no increase has occurred in the last Z cardiac cycles. By increasing the overdrive pacing rate only in response to detection of at least two P-waves within a determined number of cardiac cycles, an excessively high overdrive pacing rate is avoided. Other techniques are described for adaptively adjusting overdrive pacing parameters so as to achieve a determined target degree of pacing of, for example, 95% paced beats. By adaptively adjusting overdrive parameters to maintain a target degree of pacing, the average overdrive pacing rate is minimized while still maintaining a high number of paced beats, thereby reducing the risk of a tachyarrhythmia occurring within the patient.

Inventors: Park; Euljoon (Stevenson Ranch, CA), Bornzin; Gene A. (Simi Valley, CA), Florio; Joseph J. (La Canada, CA), Poore; John W. (So. Pasadena, CA), Kurschinski; Douglas T. (Valencia, CA)

Assignee: Pacesetter, Inc.

International Classification: A61N 1/368 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 9/05/02018