Pain around pacemaker pocket

I am on my third pacemaker in 19 years. I have third degree heart block and feel wonderful.  Except for this last pacemaker. I received it May 19 and had lots of pain post placement.  My two previous pacemakers were no problem, almost no pain. This one has hurt since placement. Wakes me up at night pain.  And it itches constantly.  I contacted my EP and was told that they had to go through a lot of scar tissue so it will be uncomfortable longer. Don't worry.  But I have pain when I move my arm above my head, if I move my head it pulls and hurts. I was scheduled for a mammo but I can't because its too painful. Now the itching is becoming unbearable. Also, I had it done at The Ohio State University in May but we are now at our winter home in Florida so everything has been email and text. They think its in my head.  What should I do? Find a doctor here, go back to Ohio and force them to see me?  My pm is functioning perfectly but it feels like they took a chainsaw to my left side.


3 Comments

pain around pacemaker

by new to pace.... - 2022-10-23 02:48:37

Your itching might be from an infection, since you do not have a doctor in Fl. You might go to a walk in ER(urgent care) and have it checked out.

As to the pain which could be scar tissue. you might try acupuncture it helped me.

new to pace

Continuing pain

by Gemita - 2022-10-23 05:46:39

Abbygirl, I am so sorry to hear about your pain and discomfort which is affecting your QOL.  It is difficult to know how long you will have to bear this level of discomfort or whether it will ever improve?  I would want a thorough assessment of the area to identify the cause for this continuing pain and whether, given further time, it will really improve? 

In my opinion if your QOL is so poor then you should go back to your original surgeon to ask whether the device could perhaps be moved to a new location?   Alternatively I would get a second opinion and further assessment from a surgeon in Florida, particularly since your original team are suggesting this is all in your head which is totally unacceptable.

Of course any pacemaker relocation and having to re-open the current wound and making a new pocket will not be without risk and more discomfort either which is why a second opinion would be helpful as to the best way forward.  Another opinion might help to find a better way to manage your current discomfort more effectively in any event. 

Have you spoken to a general doctor in Florida about the itchiness?  Whatever you do, try not to scratch the wound and cause an infection.  Allergic reactions, although rare, may occur following device implant.  As new to pace suggests, there would be no harm in going to ER for some checks Abbygirl.

How insulting!😤

by Lavender - 2022-10-23 08:45:32

They think it's in your head?!?

What the heck? Why would you want to feel pain and itching? My suggestion is this:

Since the pacemaker is working ok and it's not an issue with that, and more of a skin issue-see a local dermatologist first for suggestions on medication or therapy to ease up the sensations you are feeling. They may be able to see what you can do about the tight scarring tissue. 

You deserve to be heard. 

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