World’s Smallest Pacemaker Saves Life
For Felipe Finale, gardening in his Hialeah backyard and tending to his guanabana trees have always been some of his greatest pleasures. But in early 2016, doing any physical task – even walking a few steps – became increasingly difficult.
“I couldn’t breathe properly and I was suffering from fatigue,” Felipe said. “I couldn’t pick up anything that weighed more than ten pounds without feeling that I was going to pass out.”
Discouraged by his inability to live an active lifestyle, Felipe sought solutions to his heart condition.
He went to Jackson South Medical Center. Felipe was seen by Jackson Medical Group cardiologist Dr. Juan Zambrano, who diagnosed him with bradycardia due to atrial fibrillation with slow ventricular response. The irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) can lead to heart-related complications including heart failure, stroke, and blood clots.
Felipe’s heart rate was extremely low. Upon reviewing exam results, Dr. Zambrano referred him to fellow Jackson Medical Group cardiologist Dr. Ivan Mendoza.
In April 2016, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved use of a Micra Transcatheter Pacing System or Micro TPS, a tiny pacemaker for patients with an irregular heartbeat. The Micro TPS is the only leadless pacemaker approved for use in the country, and the smallest in the world.
This device, which is the size of a large vitamin, was the perfect solution for Felipe’s cardiac issue. Dr. Mendoza at Jackson South made Felipe the first patient in Miami-Dade County to be implanted with a Micro TPS, post-FDA approval.
Almost immediately following the implantation, Felipe’s normal heart rhythm was restored.
“Not even my priest thought there was a miracle for me,” he said. “This doctor saved me.”
Jun. 2012 Miracle Stories
Doctors Save Teenager Impaled in the Head by Spear. Link opens story page.
In 2012, while spearfishing at a Miami lake, 16-year-old Yasser Lopez was struck in the head by a spear.Explore in story page.
Feb. 2018 Employee Stories
Jackson, My Second Home. Link opens story page.
I joined the Jackson family in April 2000 as a clerk stenographer in Corrections Health Services. At the time, my aunt, who was part of the organization in 1988 and came back in 1998, suggested I apply because she thought I would be great for the position.Explore in story page.
Nov. 1965 Medical Firsts
Steamship Fire Leads to Burn Services and New Treatment. Link opens story page.
On November 1965, a devastating fire onboard the SS Yarmouth Castle killed 90. Five of the surviving victims were flown to Jackson for treatment with silver nitrate.Explore in story page.