The DEXTRUS pacing lead is an extendable-retractable, active fixation lead designed to provide a larger electrically-active surface area for enhanced threshold performance. The lead features a familiar feel with durable and predictable helix extension-retraction performance and an inner coil designed for predictable torque response. The DEXTRUS lead is designed for an easy lead implant experience with mapping capability, a radiopaque helix and tip extension indicator and a flexible tip designed for flexible placement options within the right atrium and right ventricle.
Pacemaker lead technology has changed considerably over the past decades. The widespread use of low polarization highly porous electrodes and steroid elution electrodes has resulted in low chronic pacing thresholds, as well as a decrease in the incidence of exit block. Efforts to develop pacing leads with high impedance might theoretically lead to lower lead current drain, which is a component of battery capacity. Pulse generator longevity can be increased without sacrificing pacemaker capabilities if pacing current drain can be decreased. Decreasing the size of the stimulation electrode results in increased pacing impedance, and if pacing thresholds are unchanged, a decreased current drain is predicted by Ohm's law (I = V/R). There is limited data available on the pacing characteristics of large numbers of patients with high impedance leads, despite their recent general availability and increasing widespread use. This multicenter, controlled trial examined the differences in performance between standard steroid-eluting pacing leads in the atrium (Medtronic model 5524) and ventricle (Medtronic model 5024), and new high impedance steroid-eluting pacing leads in the atrium (Medtronic model 5534) and ventricle (Medtronic model 5034). Measurements of bipolar pacing thresholds at V, pacing impedance, and sensing thresholds were determined within 24 hours of pacemaker implantation, and at , 1, 3, 6 and 12 months after pacemaker implantation in 609 patients. Pacing and sensing thresholds were similar for the control and high impedance leads at all times except for a slightly larger R wave with the high impedance leads at implantation and 12 months. The mean impedance of the high impedance pacing leads in the atrium and ventricle at 12 months was 992 ± 175 and 1,080 ± 220 Ω, compared to 522 ± 69 and 600 ± 89 Ω for the standard pacing leads in the atrium and ventricle (P ≤ for the high impedance leads compared to standard leads in each chamber). The mean atrial lead current (measured at V) at 12 months was ± mA with the high impedance lead, and ± mA with the standard lead in the atrium (P ≤ ). In the ventricle, the mean lead current at 12 months was ± mA with the high impedance pacing lead and ± mA with the standard lead (P ≤ ). High impedance leads are associated with lower lead current drain than standard pacing leads in the atrium and ventricle for up to 1 year. No clinically important differences in sensing characteristics was noted with the high impedance leads in the atrium or ventricle compared to standard pacing leads. High impedance leads may result in increased pulse generator longevity.