Is my husband considered "compromised immune" or "at risk" with Covid 19?

Hi all, you were so helpful last time I had a question, so here's another one for you. Is my husband who has a biotronik dual pacemaker (not difib) and is 50 years old. He had a level 3 blockage (electrical impulses not working) due to having chemotherapy as a 10 year old. he considered a 'compromised immune system' or 'a high risk' individual in the current covid 19 era.

Thank you, Karen (his wife)


High risk conditions

by Gemita - 2020-03-24 03:44:49

Hello Karen,

I attach guidance link below for us in the UK for you to copy and paste into your browser if this helps?  I see you are in California so I am unclear of your specific guidelines to follow out there.  However based on our UK Government health service advice, your husband would not appear to be a "highest risk individual" since from your description he is not immune compromised at this time, or have any of the specific conditions mentioned.  But you should seek guidance/confirmation from his own doctors and from your own health authorities.

Your husband had chemotherapy when he was 10 yrs old and I presume his condition was successfully treated at that time ?  Many conditions could put your husband at a higher risk if he developed the virus, including heart disease (like coronary artery disease, heart failure), lung disease (like cystic fibrosis, severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), cancer, diabetes, auto immune conditions like Lupus, being a smoker, and old aged (over 70), in fact any condition which is likely to suppress his immune system.  The pacemaker hopefully has successfully treated his heart block so this condition should not cause additional risk and having a pacemaker in itself should not pose an additional risk either.

Nonetheless all of us are at considerable risk of developing the virus and passing it on to others, unless we take stringent measures to stay at home as far as possible or keep a safe distance from others if we do have to go out.  We are being advised to stay 2 metres apart from others when out.   And of course practise regular good hygiene measures like washing our hands Karen.  Stay safe both of you and try not to be anxious.  We will get through this.


by Gotrhythm - 2020-03-24 12:04:28

In and of itself, having a pacemaker does not make one more likely to catch a disease, or to get sicker from the disease.

What matters is the underlying reason for needing the pacemaker--does have the pacemaker because of heart disease? If there is heart disease, then yes, they are high risk. But not because of the pacemaker. Because of the disease.

Many people who have pacemakers have no heart disease at all. They have an electrical glitch in their heart. The pacemaker fixes it. They can live a normal life, and need only to take normal precautions.

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