Pacing

If the patient develops a low cardiac output as a result of absolute or relative bradycardia, despite pharmocological manipulation, temporary pacing to maintain a heart rate above 90 beats/min is appropriate. Epicardial ventricular pacing wires placed intraoperatively safeguard against bradycardia refractory to medications. The need for temporary pacing following heart transplantation has been reported to be as high 27 per cent. Long-term pacing requirements are much lower (2-11 per cent) and are almost equally divided between sinoatrial and atrioventricular node dysfunction.

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