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Pacemakers and drivingHi everyone. I have a-fib tachycardia and because of some of my other meds I can't tolerate beta-blockers. My Cardiologist and EP want to put in a pacemaker/defibrillator..My question is there anyone out there who has one and are you aloud to drive after having one put in. I have heard conflicting reports as to weather they take your license.Does anyone know about this? I don't see my Doctor until next month so I am curious.
Jeanamo, March 20, 2016 8:04am ESTI have a pacemaker (not a defibrillator) and I drive all the time....have never had anyone say I shouldn't. My pacemaker was installed to keep my heart rate from going below 60 BPM while taking amiodarone...then later sotalol. I am no longer taking a beta blocker (but of course I still have the pacemaker). I have a number of friends with pacemakers and they all drive. I don't know about the pacemaker/defibrillator combination, but I am sure there are people in this group who have one. My sister had a defibrillator and she could drive...so I doubt that it is restricted. If it is, it could vary from state to state. Hope you will get a definitive answer from someone in this forum. Your doctor can tell you when you see him/her. Best wishes!
JBNZ, March 20, 2016 10:35pm ESTHere in New Zealand we are allowed to drive if we have an ICD/pacemaker - I have one and drive.I believe if we have an SCA (sudden cardiac arrest) whether our ICD fires or not we are not allowed to drive for 6 months. So sometimes people incorrectly believe that if the ICD fires then they can't drive for 6 months. It wasn't the ICD shock that meant they couldn't drive it was the SCA.This is as I understand it for New Zealand, your local rules may differ :-)Here's a link to a info for US-based (I think) patients - http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/implantable-cardioverter-defibrillator/basics/results/prc-20015079And a quote from that webpage"The guidelines discourage driving during the first six months after your procedure if your ICD was implanted due to a previous cardiac arrest or ventricular arrhythmia."As I read it the ban or 'discouragement' is because of the cardiac arrest/ventricular arrhythmia.It sounds like you would be fine to drive (once you have recovered from the procedure of course!) after your ICD was implanted as you mention neither a cardiac arrest nor ventricular arrhythmia. But of course check with your cardiologist.Hope that helps John
marylandpm, March 21, 2016 7:59am ESTI could not drive for one week after getting my pacemaker. You are safer with the pacemaker than you were before you get it if you have bardycardia and could passout. I don't think you are allowed to pilot a commerical aircraft or be a policeman or fireman. Good luck, I think you will be fine.Jack
Becky817, March 22, 2016 8:51am ESTHi,I have had a pacemaker and progressed to having a defibrillator currently. Post-surgey, I had to take it easy for about a week. I drive and work full-time and live a very full life.Thanks,Becky.