Real-time, two-dimensional echocardiographic features of pacemaker perforation

Academic Article


  • Five patients (four adults and one child) with clinically suspected myocardial perforation by temporary transvenous pacemakers were studied by real-time, two-dimensional echocardiography. In three patients, the catheters were visualized passing through the right ventricular apical wall with the tip located outside the cardiac border. In one patient the catheter perforated the atrioventricular septum and entered the left ventricle with the tip lodged against the posterior wall. In another patient, the catheter had partially penetrated the ventricular septum near the apex. Pericardial effusion was observed in two patients, in one of whom it was localized to the site of perforation. No patient had evidence of cardiac tamponade. In four patients, the catheters were withdrawn under echocardiographic visualization and the catheter tips could be seen moving from the abnormal locations back into the right-heart chambers. Perforation was verified at autopsy in two patients, including one in whom the catheter was not withdrawn. Real-time, two-dimensional echocardiography appears to be valuable in the diagnosis of pacemaker perforation.
  • Author List

  • Gondi B; Nanda NC
  • Start Page

  • 97
  • End Page

  • 106
  • Volume

  • 64