Doctor insights on:
Will A Taser Kill Someone Who Has An Implanted Defibrillator
Maybe not: A taser might damage implanted devices, although some studies done on pigs found the 5-seconds of high voltage did not damage pacemakers or implanted defibrillators. Those devices likely have safety features to block high voltage electrical currents. Not sure if a defribillator could reset the heart if a taser created an abnormal rhythm, but the studies suggest the defribrillator would still work. ...Read more
Tazers: There have been recent reports of tazers causing cardiac arrest in patients without aicd's. I suppose it would be possible for a tazer to "trick" and aicd into "thinking" that the patient had an actual arrhythmia and deliver what we would term an "inappropriate shock". I am not aware of any such reports however. ...Read more
Yes: Yes, and the generator is usually replaced in anticipation of the end of battery life. There are risks. That is only the generator and not the leads. Lead removal has separate and distinct risks. ...Read more
See below: An implanted cardiac defibrillator is a pacemaker and a defibrillator. The defibrillator is needed for certain conditions that would lead to a dangerous arrythmias - heart rhythms - that could cause death. When such a rhythm is detected, within the program set by the cardiologist - the defibrillator will deliver shock (s) to the heart. ...Read more
Absolutely: This is one of the risks of this type of device and infections can be nasty. ...Read more
ICD: One of the complications of any implanted device, including defibrillators, is infection. ...Read more
I read that there can be complications with an implanted defibrillator such as infections, is it true and what kind?
ICD: Infections related to implanted defibrillator usually are related to the implantation procedure. If the device has been in place for a while with no problem, then seeding of the pocket or lead sites from another infection is possible. These infections are uncommon but serious. ...Read more
What to do if I heard that there can be complications with an implanted defibrillator such as infections, is it true?
Yes, but: As with any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection but only at the time of implantation. ...Read more
Defibrillators: The device has an antenna that monitors the electrical activity of the heart. If the recorded parameters fit those of ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation, the device will charge its capacitor and deliver programmed shocks to try and return the rhythm to normal. It is a computer and programmed to do its functions. They are very effective but not perfect. ...Read more
My cardiologist suggested I should have a defibrillator implanted. Is there one that doesn't need an operation?
Defibrillator: All defibrillators need to be implanted under the skin. ...Read more
It is perfectly fine to get breast implants if you have an implantable defibrillator. You simply need to have the defibrillator turned off during the surgery so that the cautery does not interfere with it. This can usually be done very quickly prior to the surgery; the device is then turned back on once the surgery is complete.
I hope that helps! ...Read more
Yes: It is rarely done in people who are using the defibrillator to help live active lives. However, at the end of life, especially in hospice patients it is very common to have the defibrillator turned off. We often have this done in hospice patients close to death to prevent the devices from delivering shocks at the time of death or after. It sounds kind of grusome, but in reality it is not. ...Read more
Defibrillator: Most of the energy of the defibrillator goes from the device across your heart to change the heart's rhythm. Some of the energy may diffuse to other tissues in your body including the baby. ...Read more
Not likely: It may not save them but unlikely to kill them. ...Read more
AICD: Most people with an AICD implanted have serious underlying heart disease and are at risk for living a shorter life than if they were normal. ...Read more
How does bystander lightning (not a direct strike) affect implanted pacemakers, defibrillators, vagus nerve stimulators, etc...?
Usually no effect.: The lightning strike (even as a bystander - it travels through the soil & can pop up at distances far from the original strike) can have deleterious effects on your heart (causing arrhythmia) or brain (causing unconsciousness) but these are just as likely with or without an implanted device. All electronic implants have a floating ground, which means they cannot short out because of an external ch ...Read more
Internal defibrillator implanted for VT with no structural heart disease, (idiopathic). Only 20 years old. Is longevity affected by this?
Ventricular Tachy: You need to discuss this with your cardiologist. Generally VT without structural or functional heart disease is low risk for shortening longevity. Without knowing more about you, it isn't possible to give you reassurance from out here. ...Read more
All cardiac tests were normal except for a high normal pulse. I personally think an implanted defibrillator is a great idea. Md didn't say. Why not?
Why?: Unless I am missing something else, a high normal heart rate is not an indication for defibrillator implantation. This, as any other procedure, is associated with certain risks. There are indications for implantation of such devices that would justify the risk; i.e. Benefits should outweigh the risks. ...Read more
Is it safe and necessary to have stress test with 25-30% heart muscle? Should I have defibrillator implanted?
Not on the internet: These are very good, valid and serious questions. But, they cannot be validly answered by a stranger on the internet who has no access to your health history, examination or current labs. Anyone who would be willing to give you a guess should probably be avoided. If you have concerns about your care you can discuss this with your family doctor or a second heart specialist. ...Read more
I have a defibrillator implanted over my left breast. It has hurt ever since placed. I hurt severely at times. The EP doc says it os nerves around the device. The OTC meds do not work. What can I do?
Dad just had pacemaker/defibrillator put in. Immediately after implant seems to have very laboured breathing, lots of chest stomach movement. Causes?
Dyspnea: This is abnormal and needs IMMEDIATE attention, if necessary go to the ER ...Read more
Yes: A lot of people with icds have a normal sex life. Just make sure you tell your ep nurse that usually checks your icd to make sure that the detection rate for shocks should be adjusted so you can have a normal heart rate increase (i.e. Sinus tachycardia) with activities, including sex. She can easily program this into the icd to avoid inappropriate shocks. ...Read more
Due to arrythmia, I had a defibulator implanted 8 years ago. My ejection fraction is now normal. Would it be safe to have plastic surgery done?
Maybe: It depends on what kind of plastic surgery you are contemplating. Many plastic surgical procedures can be performed under local anesthesia with a minimal health risk. Larger procedures may be dangerous in the setting of certain heart conditions. You should ask your plastic surgeon and cardiologist if surgery is safe for you. ...Read more
4 days post op from breast implant surgery. Is it normal I can't even lift my right arm up w/out it killing. The pain isn't even near the incision?
See your surgeon: For acute onset pain, it is best to go and see the surgeon who performed the breast augmentation procedure for you. Muscle spasms can occur in patients who have sub muscular implants placed and this may cause pain when trying to move arm. If the approach was through the axilla, or patients develop a hematoma then additional pain can be present with associated arm movement in some patients. ...Read more
To stop fibrillation: "fibrillation" is when the heart muscle is not contracting efficiently, but rather twitching weakly at rapid rates. If this involves the bottom chambers of the heart ("ventricles"), it is life threatening as normal cardiac output falls drastically. The rhythm must be normalized quickly to resume normal heart output, and electrical shocks promptly defibrillate, i.e. Stop the abnormal rhythm. ...Read more
Many public place: An external defibrillator can be found in many public places, thanks to recent studies showing that availability of these automated devices can be used by even untrained bystanders to save lives during a cardiac arrest. Airports usually have them displayed on a wall, as do many theaters, concert halls, etc. Restaurants may have one as well but you probably have to ask someone to go get it. ...Read more
What is the life expectancy of someone who refuse to change the batteries in their pacemaker and defibrillator?
Heart failure: Defibrillators are typically placed in patient's with poor cardiac function. Although the defibrillator does protect them from lethal arrhythmias, it does not protect him from worsening heart function. Patients with defibrillators can die from end-stage heart failure or from a completely noncardiac illness. ...Read more
No: There is a theoretic risk, but it is small. The device produces a strong current for only a few seconds. The current is not sufficient to damage the icd directly. It could cause the icd to falsely detect an arrhythmia, but not one of sufficient duration to have the icd respond. Reports in humans and experimental testing in animals have not shown significant adverse effects. ...Read more
If someone is accidentally shocked by a defibrillator being used during a patient resuscitation, and lost her babyc could the defibrillator be the cause?
Question: This is not a simple question. A lot more information would be needed to evaluate the possibility/probability. There is a possibility but the probabilities would vary depending on the variable data ...Read more
I know someone that has a pacemaker / defibrillator, and I was wondering if they got shocked would it stop it from working? What will happen if they do get shocked?
The: The device will continue to work unless there have been so many shocks which may drain the battery. The battery level can be detected by a simple noninvasive test. ...Read more
Probably not.: Most heart rhythms that would require a defibrillator will probably cause loss of consciousness quickly - so you would be unconscious prior to being able to hook up the defibrillator and set it off. ...Read more
Company request: Please call the compnay rep. Many internal programming questions may not be available to doctors or staff. ...Read more
AED: An AED is a defibrillator. Automated External Defibrillator is the name. All defibrillators however are not automated or external. ...Read more
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