Recently had adjustments to pacemaker due to palpitations and shortness of breath but no details. The tech just said they were “juicing it up”. No change to base rate which is 60 bpm. The same day I felt more alert but slightly stupid, thoughts disconnected, and next morning slightly disoriented. Since then tightness of muscles in head, transient headaches on exertion, slight dizziness, and tiring quickly. Looked up “coronary disorientation” on the Internet and read cognitive changes can be due to altered blood flow to the brain. When quiet I can feel the pulse in my head. For last five days have been checking blood pressure which has been 180-190/100-110. Age 75. Ejection fraction 38. Heart attack and two stents seventeen years ago. Complete block and pacemaker just over a year ago. Called clinic about blood pressure and told not related to pacemaker. Have telephone consultation with cardiologist next week.. When people ask “How are you?” I say “Sorry, I’m not qualified to tell you how I am. I can only tell you how I feel.” I’d like to know more about how I am.


First question: Where can I read about pacemakers and settings? I’ve been looking at posts here and people seem to be much better informed. (I don’t get printouts.)


Second question: What is other people’s experience with pacemaker alterations and brain activity?


Thanks for your help.



by Gemita - 2021-05-20 08:30:09

WM, with respect, I would go back to your doctors rather than asking our opinion or trying to get information over the internet.  Your blood pressure is much too high especially for your age and health condition and I am not at all surprised that you are experiencing the symptoms you mention because at those values, if prolonged, you could do some serious damage.  I would go along urgently to your general doctor and get a blood pressure check and a review of your meds.  I wouldn't wait until next week for a tel consult with your cardiologist.

I also do not get print outs unless I specifically request them (I am in the UK), but they will usually give them to you if you “officially” request them.   We then have to learn what the data means, so it is a slow process and we cannot learn overnight because electrical faults and pacemaker settings are most definitely a “Study”. 

Where can you read about pacemakers and settings?  The best thing to do is to find your own pacemaker model and download a copy of the Manual which will contain all the information you need to know about your pacemaker.  Then you will need to know what is set up in your own pacemaker by asking your clinic to give you details.  You do not seem to have completed any details about your pacemaker, manufacturer/model?

Pacemaker adjustments (alterations) and brain activity?  My brain activity is sharper after having my pacemaker set at a minimum 70 bpm day and night.  It really depends what adjustments are made so a difficult question to answer because each adjustment will clearly affect us all in very different ways, depending on age, health conditions, lifestyle (demands we make on ourselves/pacemaker) and so on.  Blood flow to the brain can be affected by a wide range of conditions but with your high blood pressure I would be looking here first and get this sorted with some urgency to protect your arteries, stents, kidneys, heart and brain.  Good luck and stay safe



Follow up.

by Wm - 2021-05-30 08:59:15

Cardiologist upped ACE inhibitor to 4x current dose, gradually. Pressure comming down before Rx filled. Monitoring pressure with follow up blood sample in one month.

Odd effect on mind and mood. More alert. More active. Concerned about lack of deep concentration which has been benefit in past. A bit late in life to start learning to change behaviour all over again. Concerned about possible short attention span and impulsive behaviour. Will I still plan ahead and think before I act? Interesting possiblity of physicians using pacemakers to treat people's mood disorders although somewhat more costly than drugs. :)

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It may be the first time we've felt a normal heart rhythm in a long time, so of course it seems too fast and too strong.