Check-ups

Hi everyone,

Just wondering has everyone had regular check-ups with there pacemaker? 

I have had none and am concerned about that. I had my implant 20/10/20.

Cheers Wendells


7 Comments

Most seem to, my doctors don't.

by BOBTHOM - 2021-12-02 18:25:00

I know my doctors occasionally download from my device but they never share this information with me.  I have to go and request medical records to see it.  I figured it was just me because I question everything.

Checkups?

by Marybird - 2021-12-02 18:56:20

I'd have thought you would have had at least one post-implant visit to check on the wound healing, usually about 10 days to 2 weeks following the implant, followed by a visit with the doctor, nurse practitioner, to include a checkup on you, and on your pacemaker, with possible settings adjustments as indicated.

That's what I had, after my pacemaker implant in 2019. This was followed by another visit 5 months later, with another pacemaker check in offfice, and appointments with the EP yearly after that- scheduled anyway. As well as quarterly remote pacemaker checks.

At this point, the EPs left the practice, and the visits with my cardiologist and PA seem to be twice a year, with a once a year in office pacemaker checks, and the quarterly remote checks.

It may be different in Australia, and things have certainly been affected by covid ( here in the US as well) . Seems that for many people, in person visits seem to have been largely replaced by virtual visits, or postponed for quite a length of time. That may be why you haven't have the checkups?

Annual checkups

by atiras - 2021-12-02 19:54:25

I get an annual visit to the device clinic for the technicians to check on the device. I'd get passed on to a cardiologist if they identified any concerns. 

During the pandemic they've been prioritising people whose batteries are close to running out and people who aren't doing well, so my interval was extended to 18 months. Given your pacemaker has only been in place for just over a year, and assuming you had the post op checks, I would not be worrying in your place, unless you're having problems,in which case:call them.

Checkups

by AgentX86 - 2021-12-02 20:05:53

Yes, you should have regular followups.  Here in the US it's typically four in-offfice PM checks during the first year, then two in-office and two-remote.  After that, there should be at least a remote check every three months, though the in-office checks may move out to a year.  I'm in my fourth year and my EP just released me back to my cardiologist's care. So unless I have a problem, I won't see him anymore.  My cardiologist will take over.  He's local and has the PM clininc in his office. I should still be on a 2/2 shedule but I've been lax.  I have to make an appointment by the end of the year (changing insurance).

Covid has been an issue here but hispitals and doctor's offices have been open over a year.  There are still "no visitors" allowed and masks required but otherwise everything has been back to normal for some time.  Giving up preventative medicine because of covid is so stupid that only government beauracrats could even suggest it.

BOBTHOM: If you're interested in your settings or any details about your care, ask. By law you have a right to any/all information in your patient file. There may be a duplication fee for any imaging (though it's all digital anymore).

Yes to Regular Checkups

by MinimeJer05 - 2021-12-03 09:29:34

Hello,

I had my PM implant in early Sept and have since had the PM checked probably 2 or 3 times. I was experiencing some vision/motion issues and had to get a few MRIs, so that is probably why those appts were scheduled, but I did leave the hospital after the PM implant with a mandatory PM check in Dec. I'm sure at that point, I will find out how often they will need to monitor me. 

Right now, my cardiologist has be scheduling appts on a 3-6 month interveral, given the recent complications and wanting to keep a closer eye on things, but it generally was a once a year visit, with an echo or MRI beforehand.

Hope you start getting your checkups -- like others have said, if you aren't getting the information you need, then just ask. There are laws that exist to ensure this sort of transparency is given to the patient.

Take care

Jer

annual

by Tracey_E - 2021-12-03 09:38:00

Quarterly pacer downloads (done remotely) and annual check up that usually includes xray, echo and holter. 

Give 'em a call

by Gotrhythm - 2021-12-03 16:39:07

Many of the modern, i.e. post-2011, pacemakers perform self-checks automatically and send remote transmissions to your doctor without you needing to do anything, so you may have had more pacemaker check-ups than you think. 

I believe a call to your cardiologist is in order just to make sure you haven't fallen off their radar. (It happens.) But also you need to find out for yourself what check up schedule(s) they use, both to follow your pacemaker and to follow you.

Unless something in my condition changes, I see my EP yearly with remote tranmission at 6 month intervals.

 

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