Vice President Cheney receives ICD

July 3, 2001

Vice President Dick Cheney intends to keep up the pace with his White House duties, following insertion of an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) in his upper chest on June 30th. Cheney, 60, was able to return to work two days after surgery.

Cheney’s ICD weighs less than three ounces and is about the size of a small pager. It is designed to continuously monitor heart rhythms and deliver appropriate electrical therapy if an abnormal rhythm is detected. With normal use, it should last five to seven years.

Approximately 60,000 patients receive ICDs each year in the U.S. Experts believe that many more individuals could benefit from ICD therapy, but they are unaware they are at risk. Individuals with a personal or family history of heart disease should check with their physicians to see whether they should be referred to heart rhythm specialists known as electrophysiologists for diagnosis and treatment.