The Center for Pacemaker and Defibrillator Lead Extraction provides comprehensive management for all cardiac implantable electronic devices including pacemakers, implantable defibrillators and their leads. This includes but is not limited to extraction of pacemaker and implantable defibrillator leads.

Cleveland Clinic is dedicated to being a leader in patient experience, clinical outcomes, research, and education for patients with cardiac implantable devices such as pacemakers and implantable defibrillators. The Cleveland Clinic has been a leader in the international lead management community; pioneering tools, techniques and care pathways, and promoting the best outcomes for pacemaker and defibrillator patients over 3 decades. Specialists in our Sydell and Arnold Miller Family Heart, Vascular & Thoracic Institute work together to provide the most advanced care for patients requiring pacemaker and defibrillator lead extraction or other device and lead management options.Cleveland Clinic is nationally ranked and globally recognized as the world leader in cardiovascular care.

Pacemakers and defibrillators have had an incredible impact in saving lives and improving the quality of life for many patients.  However, like any piece of equipment, issues can arise over time.  Leads can break down and fail over time and in some cases, these leads and devices can become infected.  In some cases, leads are no longer needed when a patient’s device is upgraded from one type to another. Physicians in the Center for Pacemaker and Defibrillator Lead Extraction take a proactive and multidisciplinary approach, working with each patient to develop a treatment plan that best suits their goals and needs.

Transvenous lead extraction, an important component in lead management, involves the use of specialized tools to remove pacemaker and defibrillator leads.  Performed in an EP lab or operating room, these tools help cut away the fibrosis or scar tissue which typically forms over time, holding these leads in place inside the vessels and heart.  This is typically performed through a small incision similar to the one used to initially implant the device.  Studies have shown that outcomes are typically better if transvenous lead extraction is performed in a high-volume center.  Our team sees patients from all over the world for management of their implantable cardiac devices and removes hundreds of leads every year.

What We Treat

What We Treat

  • Pacemaker and implantable defibrillator lead and device malfunction
  • Pacemaker and implantable defibrillator lead fracture
  • Pacemaker and implantable defibrillator lead and device infection
  • Leadless pacemaker removal
  • Venous occlusion caused by pacemaker and implantable defibrillator leads
  • SVC syndrome caused by pacemaker and implantable defibrillator leads
  • Abandoned pacemaker and implantable defibrillator leads
  • Optimal placement of and lifelong management of CIED systems



Multidisciplinary Team

Cardiac Electrophysiology

Cardiac Surgery

Vascular Surgery



By Phone

To make an appointment, please call toll-free 800.659.7822.


Use our secure online form to submit an appointment request 24/7. We will receive it and follow-up with you as soon as possible.

Request an Appointment Online

Physician Referrals – Call the Referring Physician Hotline 24/7:
855.REFER.123 (855.733.3712)

More info on referrals, transfers and critical care transport.

Our team will work with patients and referring physicians to obtain necessary medical records, imaging and testing. New patients will often be scheduled for a telehealth visit with one of our physicians to gather more information and provide and understanding of our process and treatment options.

The address is:

Physician Name
Cleveland Clinic Heart, Vascular and Thoracic Institute
9500 Euclid Avenue – Desk J2-2
Cleveland, OH 44195


The Pacemaker and Defibrillator Lead Extraction Center is located at Desk J2-2, on the 2nd floor of the Sydell and Arnold Miller Family Heart, Vascular and Thoracic Institute, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio.

Before your appointment:

Ensure all necessary records and been received by the center.

What to Expect

What to Expect

Whether you are coming from around the corner or around the world, you want to know what to expect before, during and after your visit with us. If you have any questions while reviewing this information, please contact us. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

Your appointments will typically include an interrogation of your device in our device clinic and a visit with a cardiac electrophysiologist to discuss your case and review treatment options. You may also need additional testing such as blood work, CT scans, X-rays, venogram, an echocardiogram and a heart catheterization. You may also meet with members of our cardiac surgery and cardiac anesthesiology departments. Please bring discs of any image studies you have had done locally including chest x-rays, venograms, echocardiograms, chest CT scans, heart catheterizations and a listing of all medications to your appointment.

In some cases, a pacemaker or implantable defibrillator lead extraction is scheduled to occur a day or two after these visits and testing. Telehealth visits in advance of travel to Cleveland Clinic may help facilitate scheduling surgery during the same trip for initial testing and evaluation.

How long will you need to stay at Cleveland Clinic?

To complete all testing, you will need to stay in the Cleveland area for 1 to 2 days.

When pacemaker or implantable defibrillator lead extraction is performed, patients should plan to spend 2-10 days. Pacemaker and implantable defibrillator lead extraction requires admission to the hospital. Some patients will be discharged the following day. Patients with a pacemaker or implantable defibrillator infection may stay in the hospital for 10 days or more after the extraction to allow initiation of antibiotics and, in appropriate cases, reimplantation of a new device.


Most patients will follow up about 6 weeks after their procedure with a device interrogation and wound check. Additional follow-up will be done in 6 months to 1 year or as needed. There is an opportunity for telephone follow-up as well.

Travel to the Cleveland Clinic

To help make your visit to Cleveland Clinic as easy as possible, please visit:

Information on travel to the Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute.

For More Information

For More Information

If you need more information, call the Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute Resource & Information Nurse at 216.445.9288 or toll-free at 866.289.6911. We would be happy to help you.