• Electrophysiology Lab

  • Pacemaker Clinic The Electrophysiology Lab (EP Lab) is equipped with the latest technology ever to be offered to the Pikes Peak region. Our physicians are well-experienced in all electrophysiology procedures as well as areas of mapping procedures.  These include mapping by electro grams from diagnostic catheters with the heart to 3-D mapping with Biosense Webster Carto Sound and St. Judes Ensite, mapping systems that create realistic cardiac chamber geometries or models, display activation timing and voltage data to identify arrhythmias, and guide precise catheter movement.  These mapping systems can drastically reduce the amount of X-rays the patient will be exposed to during a procedure. Patient safety is our number one priority in our lab, which is staffed with critical care Registered Nurses.  They are physician-trained in scrub techniques for an electrophysiology procedure, whether it's ablation, device implants or laser lead extractions.  Their sole concern is the safety and well-being of every patient who enters our lab.

    Implantation & Pacemaker Clinic
    If a patient suffers from a slow or a fast heartbeat, there are implantable devices that will make the heartbeat regular and treat an arrhythmia. Slow heartbeats are treated with pacemakers. Fast, dangerous heartbeats, which may lead to cardiac arrest, are treated with implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs).

    The Penrose Pacemaker Clinic is responsible for the follow-up monitoring of all pacemakers and Internal Cardiac Defibrillators (ICDs). Our clinicians work closely with physicians to provide effective quality care to each and every patient. The patient is seen initially three months after the pacemaker or ICD is placed.  All pacemakers or ICDs are then followed on a regular basis, whether it be every three months for an ICD or every six months for pacemakers.  As the device ages, inspections may occur more frequently to monitor the appropriate time for replacement.

    Each visit to the Penrose Pacemaker Clinic involves a painless inspection of the device, which takes approximately 20 minutes.  A large number of information provided by the device is monitored to ensure the device is stable and safe. The clinician is able to determine if any arrhythmias have occurred or therapies have been delivered by the device. Depending on the assessment, the physician is notified and appropriate actions are taken. All inspection reports are submitted to the physicians for review and signatures. Patients are treated on an individual basis and the devices are programmed to meet their lifestyle and needs.

    Remote Monitoring - Many patients qualify for remote monitoring. Using state-of-the-art technology, our clinic is able to inspect the device remotely via the internet.  This enables the patient to transmit information and receive the same quality care without the need for a hospital visit.  This is extremely beneficial for patients who live out of the local area or who are unable to travel.  If a patient feels he or she has had a cardiac event, this remote monitoring can be used to assess the device and alert the physician in a timely manner, without the need to be seen in the emergency room or clinic.

    Patients are encouraged to contact the Penrose Pacemaker Clinic if there are any problems or questions related to their device.  The clinic maintains a 24/7 on-call schedule in order to be available for after-hour emergencies.  Our goal is to provide quality care and emotional support to each and every patient. For more information, call 719-776-5000.

    Electrophysiology Studies
    If you have abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias) or palpitations you may need this test. Similar to an angiography, fine tubes (electrode catheters) are fed into a vein and/or artery usually in the groin. They are then gently moved into the heart, where they stimulate the heart and record your heart's electrical activity.

    Arrhythmia Ablation
    Ablation is used to treat abnormal heart rhythms, or arrhythmias. The type of arrhythmia and the presence of other heart disease will determine whether ablation can be performed surgically or non-surgically. Non-surgical ablation, used for many types of arrhythmias, is performed in a special lab called the electrophysiology (EP) laboratory. During this non-surgical procedure a catheter is inserted into a specific area of the heart. A special machine directs energy through the catheter to small areas of the heart muscle that causes the abnormal heart rhythm. This energy "disconnects" the pathway of the abnormal rhythm. It can also be used to disconnect the electrical pathway between the upper chambers (atria) and the lower chambers (ventricles) of the heart. Surgical ablation procedures used for treating atrial fibrillation can be "minimally invasive" or traditional "open" surgery and may be combined with other surgical therapies such as bypass surgery, valve repair, or valve replacement.

    Atrial Fibrillation Ablation
    During this procedure, a thin wire (catheter) is positioned inside your heart near the pulmonary veins. Radio energy applied to the tip of this catheter is used to cauterize (ablate) the heart tissue around each pulmonary vein. This electrically "disconnects" the pulmonary veins from the left atrium. As a result, the abnormal electrical signals from the pulmonary veins can no longer reach the rest of the heart and trigger Atrial Fibrillation.