Friday, February 25, 2011

JET (Junctional Ectopic Tachycardia)

Claire has had a pretty good day.  She is acting more like herself tonight kicking and wide-eyed.  She's trying to smile, but hasn't done a big one yet.  She's still not sure if she likes me or not for putting her though this surgery.  But she's getting there!

Not much has changed since the last post.  We are still in PCICU so they can monitor the pacemaker and Claire's heart rate.  I got to hold her this afternoon and we took a nap together.  My mom was so kind to take pictures of us while we were sound asleep.  She said we both had our mouths wide open!  We are exhausted!

Carissa so kindly sent me a message today explaining the temporary pacing with the pacemaker.  I tried Googling JET but all I got was medical journals.  So I am copying and pasting her explanation here so everyone else can better understand.  What would I do without her?!?! 

It is very common after TET repairs, especially for an arrhythmia called JET which is Junctional Ectopic Tachycardia, it is a fast rhythm that originates from the wrong place. To fix it, they pace the heart at a faster rhythm than the heart is trying to beat at. It kind of resets the heart so that the beats can come from the right place. The p wave is the little tiny hump, before the bigger qrs spike on the ekg. The p wave is the signal that the beat originated from the proper place. Even if there isn't a p wave the heart is often smart enough to generate the big contraction of the qrs beat, but it isn't as effective. So by pacing, you add in the "atrial kick" or p wave which helps the heart work better. Junctional rhythm's are super common in tet repairs, because of where they have to do the cutting. It is very uncommon for them to need permanent pacemakers. They wouldn't even start to go down that road until she was 10-14 days out.

Hope that makes sense!  It did to me!


The Scott Family

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