Heart Problems: Living With a Pacemaker or ICD – Introduction

Heart Disease

Introduction

A pacemaker or an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) helps protect you against dangerous heart rhythms. It’s important to know how these devices work and how to keep them working right. Learning a few important facts about pacemakers and ICDs can help you get the best results from your device.

Key points

  • Avoid strong magnetic and electrical fields. These can keep your device from working right.
  • Most office equipment and home appliances are safe to use. Learn which things you should use with caution and which you should stay away from.
  • Be sure that any doctor, dentist, or other health professional you see knows that you have a pacemaker or ICD.
  • Always carry a card in your wallet that tells what kind of device you have. Wear medical alert jewelry that says you have a pacemaker or ICD.
  • Have your pacemaker or ICD checked regularly to make sure it is working right.
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