Flying with an ICD?

Am flying to Atlanta this Friday. First time flying with my ICD. 
A little nervous about airport security - any advice? 

Thanks! 


9 Comments

Not a big deal

by AgentX86 - 2018-10-03 22:38:53

I just flew for the first time, post-pacemaker, a couple of weeks ago.  I had no problem with security, though I was separated from my shoes (and everything else) for a few minutes, while they got someone to pat me down.  They did notice that I wasn't with my stuff so was allowed to collect it together and watch it while I waited the few minutes.

It was a quite a thourough pat-down but very professional and there wasn't any drama.  All I did is show one of the first TSA officers in the line my Medtronic card and everyone knew what to do. 

Of course, you can choose to just ignore your pacemaker and go through the normal screening. It'll save a few minutes (and some cheap TSA thrills) but that's up to you.

It was no problem

by Kiwi - 2018-10-04 00:31:40

I also travelled recently got my device around a month ago

I chose to walk through the metal detector which obviously set it off. Showed them my PM card and they used a wand everywhere but over my device and just gently gave it a pat and was on my way

My cardiologist just told me to not stop under it just go at a normal pace through it

the states is probably more strict than New Zealand with the pat down but It’s no big deal

enjoy your trip

Some are easier than others....

by BOBTHOM - 2018-10-04 08:29:13

I flew NC to Vegas with one connection 7 weeks after implant.  Departing, I showed my ID, they told me to walk through the scanner, I replied that I was told not to and that you would do a hand pat down.  Well, that was apparently not the right thing to say as she immediately yelled out "he's refusing screening".  Well, not sure if it was her inexperience or what but showed the card to the next guerilla in line and he just took me aside and used the hand wand, which obviously went off when he went over the device, he went to pat the device and I pulled away, he was shocked and was ready to pounce on me.  I told him I was just 7 weeks post implact and it's still very sensitive.  He said OK and did a very gentle check on the device site.  Then I was free to go.  The connection was no issue.  The flight back was simple.  Apparently Vegas knows what they are doing.  I showed my card at document verification, he flagged the scanner folks, I walked right through, showed my card again, and I was on my way.   The newer scanners (which I think they all are by now) and the newer ICD/Pacemakers are all compatible with each other, just make sure you have your ID card and expect to be patted down.

Have a fun trip!

flying

by Tracey_E - 2018-10-04 12:41:55

It's no longer necessary to avoid the metal detectors and the 3d scanners have never been a problem because they are xray. I just walk on through and don't say anything. I fly at least once a month, no issues. Keep it simple. 

Flight safety

by ROBO Pop - 2018-10-04 13:42:37

TraceyE is right, there is no reason to ask for a pat down unless of course you are into being groped. Stop worrying about airport security, it's the sudden stop when your plane smashes into the ground you need to worry about

Just checking

by daves52 - 2018-10-04 17:06:17

How did you flight go??

Completely agree with Robo Pop!

by LondonAndy - 2018-10-04 19:20:38

I always carry my official pacemaker ID, but don't say anything and just go through the arch.  Occasionally the alarm goes off, but I am never sure if that is the pacemaker or something else.  I then tell them about the pacemaker, but have never actually had to show the ID!

Atlanta was one of my favourite airports when exploring the US in the 1990s and naughties.  Incredibly efficient.  Hope it still is!

 

Flying and security

by Buzbuz9 - 2018-10-06 18:27:10

I've had a pacemaker for over 18 years now, and I travel quite frequently. I have never once actually needed to show anyone my pacemaker ID card, so don't stress if you ever forget yours. I just explained that I have a pacemaker and if they don't believe me I show them my medical ID tag(this happens very rarely). you used to have to go to pat down every time, but with the new 3D scanning you can totally go through that machine hundred percent safe. Some small airports will still have you be pat down, but honestly I find more problems trying to get into theme parks and different types of entertainment complexes. just make sure you do not get wanded, that will be detrimental to your pacemakers function. All I would recommend is that you know how to explain that you have a pacemaker in the language of whatever country you're in. And it's never a bad idea to keep a pacemaker card with you.

Went okay! q

by Johnnie - 2018-10-10 18:55:44

Thanks all for the advice - I just handed the person at the first TSA checkpoint my ID and ICD card. They just told me to go through the full body scanner instead of the metal detector. 
The bigger issue was my insulin pump as I don't have a card for that and they insisted on doing a gunpowder residue test both times. 

You know you're wired when...

Airport security welcomes you.

Member Quotes

I am not planning on letting any of this shorten my life. I am planning on living a long happy battery operated life. You never know maybe it will keep me alive longer. I sure know one thing I would have been dead before starting school without it.