Just last month, Carondelet Heart & Vascular Institute became one of the first hospitals in the United States to implant a revolutionary new technology in pacemakers. It’s called the Revo MRI™ SureScan® pacing system. This is a state-of-the-art device designed to address safety concerns around Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) procedures for patients who have implanted pacemakers. Until now, patients with pacemakers were prohibited from having an MRI because MRI scanners can cause traditional pacemakers might face serious complications, such as interference with pacemaker operation, damage to system components, lead or pacemaker dislodgement or change in pacing capture threshold. This FDA approved Revo MRI pacing system, when programmed into SureScan mode prior to an MRI scan1, is designed to be used safely in the MRI environment. 

“This pacemaker will allow patients to undergo an MRI if they ever need one,” notes Dr. Paul Bejarano, the Tucson cardiologist who implanted the first Revo MRI™ SureScan® at Carondelet Heart & Vascular Institute. “The wires used in this device are compatible with an MRI, whereas in conventional pacemakers, the wires can prove catastrophic to the heart during an MRI.” 

“I feel 100% better, I feel like I went to the Wizard of Oz and got a new heart,” says Herman Morales, the Tucson patient who received this new pacemaker. “I have back problems and will likely have to undergo back surgery soon,” adds Morales. “Now, I can be comfortable knowing that my neurosurgeon will be able to use an MRI as a diagnostic tool if needed.” 

The number of patients with pacemakers is growing at the same time that the use of MRI is increasing. MRI is often preferred by physicians because it provides a level of detail and clarity not offered by other soft tissue imaging modalities. Dr. Bejarano says he believes approximately one thousand Tucsonans have pacemakers put in each year in Southern Arizona. It has been estimated that there is a 50 to 75 percent probability that cardiac device patients will be indicated for an MRI over the lifetime of their devices. 

“Medical imaging and electronic implantable devices, such as pacemakers, are important technological advances, particularly for older people,” said Carolyn Erenberger, Service Line Executive for Cardiovascular Care at Carondelet Health Network. “Carondelet Heart & Vascular Institute is proud to provide Southern Arizonans with safe options for all their healthcare needs. This new pacemaker is one example of our efforts to offer the latest, advanced technology in all aspects of cardiovascular care. This is part of our continuing commitment to our patients and this community.” 

Carondelet Health Network, located in Tucson, Arizona, is a Catholic, nonprofit health care system dedicated to responding to the health care needs of Southern Arizonans. With a Mission to Heal, Carondelet was founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet 130 years ago. Carondelet Health Network facilities include Carondelet St. Mary's Hospital, Carondelet St. Joseph's Hospital, Carondelet Heart & Vascular Institute and Carondelet Neurological Institute on the campus of St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tucson and Carondelet Holy Cross Hospital in Nogales, Arizona. Other Carondelet services include nearly fourteen Carondelet Medical Group primary care locations, three Carondelet Specialist Group offices, an ambulatory surgery center and various outpatient services. Carondelet Health Network is a ministry of Ascension Health, the nation's largest Catholic, non-profit health care system. In Fiscal Year 2010, Carondelet provided nearly $50 million (8.3 percent of its net revenue) in Community Benefit to improve the health of our community and increase access to health care. More information about Carondelet Health Network is available at 

1 According to Medtronic, the company that manufactures this device, a complete SureScan pacing system including a Revo MRI SureScan IPG and two CapSure Fix MRI™ SureScan leads is required for use in the MRI environment. Any other combination may result in a hazard to the patient during an MRI scan. The SureScan feature must be programmed to On prior to scanning a patient according to the specified conditions for use. Consult Medtronic’s website at or call Medtronic at 1 (800) 328-2518.