Heart transplantation (HT) in patients with prior cardiovascular implantable electronic devices (CIEDs) is becoming more common, in parallel with the increased use of CIEDs for patients with advanced heart failure. Complete removal of CIED components during HT is not always feasible, and it is thus surprising that the literature addressing the implications of retained CIED components is limited. Indeed, there are neither guidelines nor consensus regarding the need for removal of these CIED fragments. This issue is nonetheless becoming important in light of the increase in the percentage of HT candidates having CIEDs, on the one hand, and newer therapeutic immunosuppressive protocols with higher bacterial infection potential, on the other. Thus, with the aim to study the implications of retained CIED fragments as a step towards establishing a therapeutic approach for the unique population of HT recipients with CIED remnants, we present here a case series of HT patients with retained CIED fragments who developed complications of infections together with a review of the available literature.
- Heart transplantation
- Retained pacemaker leads