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Minnesota man becomes first in state to get new cardiac device

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A Minnesota man has become the first in the state to receive a new implant device to help with heart-racing issues, FOX 9 reports.

The tiny device, which is hidden behind a band-aid on 37-year-old Steven Byboth's chest, is meant to track down what causes his abnormal heart rhythms. Byboth received the tiny implant at Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids. The procedure reportedly takes about 10 minutes; doctors implant the device beneath the skin of the patient near the breastbone.

Byboth's episodes have been a mystery to doctors, and the often perilous experiences frighten him, FOX 9 says.

"I start sweating, sometimes I start shaking and then I just freak out," Byboth tells the station. "I almost passed out a few times. I'm driving when it happens too. It's 50-50 – either you're walking or driving."

The Medtronic device – called the Reveal Linq – is about the size of a AAA battery and one-sixth the size of previous such devices. It gives Byboth the ability to wirelessly transmit readings to his doctor when he experiences an episode.

Medtronic launched the miniature cardiac monitor last month after it was approved by regulators in the U.S. and Europe, the Star Tribune said.

"This is game-changing technology for patients who need cardiac monitoring, and we look forward to providing them with the most technologically advanced and minimally invasive approach possible," said Pat Mackin, president of the Cardiac Rhythm Disease Management business and senior vice president at Medtronic in a press release.

According to FOX 9, abnormal heart rhythms can lead to cardiac arrest. The station also notes that in 30 percent of stroke issues, an abnormal heart rhythm is involved.

FOX 9 says the new device will help monitor Byboth's heart activity for the next three years.

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