Pacemaker/defibrillator placement

I received my pacemaker defibrillator 5 weeks ago and I am still getting used to the location and the feel of it.  It seems very close to my armpit and I feel it every time I move my arm.  Will I get used to this?  Also I can see the outline under my skin and feel every ripple, so close to the surface of my skin.

thank you for any info 


4 Comments

Placement

by AgentX86 - 2022-09-28 21:34:06

It being very close to the surface is normal.  Mine is easily seen, including the wires going up towards my collarbone.

Being close to the arm pit isn't unusual but it's not "normal".  It's not intended to be there. If you think about Star Trek, mine is about where their communicator is (OK, it's all I could come up with folks😆). Pacemakers are anchored to the pectoral muscle with a single stitch.  Sometimes this anchor fails and it moves somewhat.  It'll stop moving as the pocket forms but it may be uncomfortable where it is.  Talk to your cardiologist/EP about it. 

Placement

by Julros - 2022-09-29 10:30:30

As AgentX86 says, yes, close to the surface is typical. Depending on your body size and body fat distribution, it may be more obvious. It can take up to a year for the site to finish healing and shrinking up. I just had an upgrade from a CRT-P to a CRT-D and the device is quite a bit bigger. Even when my CRT-P was well healed, it sort of bulged into my armpit when I raised my arm. 

Do they ever just ask?

by TLee - 2022-09-29 10:41:06

Seems to me that placement should be discussed with the patient, not that I could have had an opinion beforehand, but it seems it is something to be discussed. Mine is very far toward my armpit to the point that I sometimes feel I am lying on it when trying to sleep. It also MIGHT be causing some nerve pain in my left shoulder--either that or arthritis is attacking another joint! Someone theorized that they might put it so far over for women, since some fashions have scoop necklines. That wouldn't really have bothered me, but they didn't ask my opinion!   

Pacemaker

by CindyB - 2022-09-29 12:19:28

You are spot on TLee.  I could care less about my pacemaker defibrillator showing in a neckline.  I cannot even move my arm across my chest without it being uncomfortable.  I know I am not a cardiologist but to have been informed and been involved in a discussion about placement would have been nice.  Just to have been aware that there would be discomfort.

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