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Pacemakers implanted in children

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MONTREAL, Jul 26, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- A Montreal hospital announced Monday a 4-month-old boy is the youngest patient ever to receive a heart pacemaker in Canada.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Sainte-Justine University Health Center said the boy would likely have died without the defibrillator pacemaker implanted during surgery.

The infant, along with a 2-year-girl who underwent the same surgery at the hospital, suffer from severe cases of a cardiac malformation called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, which has as its main complication, sudden death.

"The effectiveness of defibrillators has been shown repeatedly in adult patients who have survived cardiac arrests," said Dr. Anne Fournier, a pediatric cardiologist caring for both of the patients. "But their use in pediatrics is rarer, especially for the type of cardiac problems we are talking about today, because these heart diseases are generally diagnosed when the patients are adults."

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.


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