When Carl would awaken in the morning, he would still be tired, groggy and bit fuzzy. He told his daughter, Tracey, he felt like he had not slept at all. He would be tired throughout the day, yet doctors could not find anything wrong. Tracey’s son Cash has CCHS and is implanted with an Avery diaphragm pacer, so Tracey decided to ask for Avery’s help.

Avery recommended that Carl see Dr. Don Headley, an otolaryngologist at St. Joseph’s hospital in Phoenix. A sleep study as well as other tests led to his diagnosis of Adult Onset Central Sleep Apnea. In March 2016, Carl was implanted cervically under monitored local anesthesia with the Avery System. Carl is “happy with his pacer” and the improvement he has seen. Now on the weekends, he has the energy to enjoy sports like jet skiing and “family time.”

The Avery Diaphragm Pacemaker is an implanted phrenic nerve or diaphragm stimulator. It consists of surgically implanted electrodes and receivers with an external transmitter and antennas.

It can be implanted either cervically or thoracically using minimally-invasive techniques such as video-assisted (VATS) or thorascopic approaches.

The Avery Diaphragm Pacemaker is the only diaphragm pacing system to have full premarket approval (PMA) from the US FDA and CE Marking privileges under the European Active Implantable Medical Device Directive for adult and pediatric use.

In addition, using small implanted radiofrequency receivers rather than electrode wires that pass directly through the skin may decrease a patient’s risk of infection and ongoing wound care management issues.

Avery has been commercially distributing Diaphragm Pacemakers since the early 1970’s. Since then, more than 2,000 patients have been implanted in over 40 countries establishing an unsurpassed record of safety and reliability. Due to their high reliability and cost effectiveness, the Avery pacers are reimbursed by Medicare and most private and government insurance around the world.
To learn more about the benefits of the Avery pacers for those with a high spinal cord injury, central sleep apnea or diaphragm paralysis, please contact us by mail, phone or through our website.

Central Sleep Apnea

The phrenic nerves originate at C3 through C5 and are the neurological pathways between the brain and each hemidiaphragm. Unlike a spinal cord injury which can damage these pathways, central sleep apnea is a condition in which the brain does not utilize these pathways consistently, if at all. Once a sleep study confirms that the patient's apneic events are of central origin, a diaphragm pacing system should be considered.