PM going off

Hi everyone,

I was wondering if you can actually feel your PM going off? If you can Please tell me what it feels like.

I know I have had some sensations but not sure if it is going off or not.

I also would like to know if anyone has done a "Power of Attorney"? I have been thinking a lot about this lately and feel I should get one drawn up.

Thanks for your help



pm going off

by huskersnb2 - 2007-10-21 09:10:40

hello you will know it when you pacer goes of it is like a big boom inside if you i just got shocked 11 times last week and its no fun my pm misfired i have a bad wire that is on recall so i have to decide what to do and as for a power of attorney i had one make because if someting bad happens to me i don't want any one deciding for me i decided

PM Beat

by ela-girl - 2007-10-21 10:10:17

Hi, Gloria!

If you are going to feel your pm kick in at all, usually you will feel the ventricular beat because it is the strong heartbeat. However, if your pm is doing its job correctly, it should be doing it 'quietly' in your chest. You really shouldn't feel it at all. If you are a new pacer, perhaps you are just over-focused on your new friend or perhaps something is not right (settings or otherwise). If you are at all unsure, call your doctor or talk with his nurse.

Hope this helps!

PM Going Off

by SMITTY - 2007-10-21 10:10:43

Hi Gloria,

I see I what I have written just confirms what ela-girl has told you, not that she needs confirmation from me. But I was busy doing my hunt and peck routine while she was replying so you will get mine as well.

If you have a pacemaker and not a defibrillator, you should never feel it working. Please note that I said a pacemaker and not a defibrillator. I do not have a D-Fib unit but I understand there is no mistaking something has happened when one of those fires.

That is not to say you will never feel anything from your pacemaker, but it will feel more like a muscle spasm or insect bite. Sometimes these can be painful, but more often than not they are a nuisance because they are totally unpredictable.

There can be several reasons for these episodes to happen. The voltage output is set too high or the impulse from the pacemaker is impinging on a nerve, or as I’ve heard it called, the impulse is stimulating a nerve, but it is pretty much all the feeling will be sudden and will last just a few milliseconds. Of course, sometime one will be followed by another and another. I’ve had a few as two in a row and as many as 10 or more, and they were in prefect sync with my heart beat. Of course these will only happen when our pacemaker is working and contrary to what many of us are led to believe; our pacemaker does not work all time, but only when needed that is unless you are 100% pacemaker dependant. The answer to that question will have to come from your doctor.

The sensations you are having could very well by from your pacemaker. One easy way to check is IF YOU KNOW WHAT THE LOW SETTING IS ON YOUR PACEMAKER; check your heart rate when you feel these sensations. If you find your heart rate within about five beats, either way, of your heart rate then your pacemaker is probably doing its thing and is causing those sensations you are feelin.,

Now the good part is they can probably be eliminated by an adjustment on your pacemaker. Since these episodes will seldom, if ever go away wiyhout help, you will need to call your doctor. And if you are told “it is not your pacemaker” don’t be deterred. That usually means that doctor is busy, lazy or doesn’t’ know beans about pacemakers. If these sensations are a real problem just stay after the doctor and eventually he will take care of your problem or more probably have a manufacturer’s rep come in and make the necessary adjustments.

But, I want to emphasize that the operation of our pacemakers does not have to be uncomfortable or painful. It does sometimes take perseverance to get the help we need.

As for the power of attorney (or living will) I think we should all have one. If for no other reason, in the event the unthinkable should happen, a living will which states our desire takes a load off our family when they will already have a full plate. However, if you think you should have one just because you now have a pacemaker, well, I think people that have pacemakers are much less likely to die after they get a pacemaker than before they got one. But, when it is all said and done, those of us with a pacemaker or defibrillator do have heart disease of some magnitude and that says we probably have a greater risk of dying than a person without any heart disease.

Good luck,


Feel PM

by sweetkozy - 2007-10-22 04:10:15

Hello Gloria!

I have had my PM for about 5 years now and I have always felt it. I do not feel it everytime in kicks in, but pretty much notice it at least once a day. It's just a nuisance, but have gotten used to it for the most part. I believe I am just one of those people that is so intuned with my heart that I feel anything that is amiss. If it is really bothering you please go have them readjust some of your settings. I had mine readjusted many times the first two years, because it was really bothering me. Finally my EP changed my settings himself for what he thought was appropriate for my case and I have hardly had any problems since. I believe it's trial and error. The sensations you are feeling are probably the PM going off. They shouldn't be painful, just a weird feeling. Kind of hard to describe. Good Luck!


Um... oops

by dward - 2007-10-22 11:10:39

I meant to say I am "A" Power of Attorney (for my mother)
not "I am THE Power of Attorney"...

Power of Attorney

by dward - 2007-10-22 11:10:40

I DID feel my PM for the first few months, just as SMITTY described. It DID freak me out a little because (again as SMITTY described) I was pretty focused on it.
After time and a few minor adjustments, I was (am) fine.
I am not a lawyer, but I am the POWER OF ATTORNEY - and also have designated my own.
Just to clarify - A power of attorney (POA) or letter of attorney in common law systems is an authorization to act on someone else's behalf in a legal or business matter. The person authorizing the other to act is the principal or granter (of the power), and the one authorized to act is the agent or attorney-in-fact.
I wouldn't necessarily confuse this as a living will (which is a direction made by you while of sound mind.)
The two are closely related, but not necessarily the same thing. A living will can make it easier on your POA.
EXAMPLE: Let's say you were on life-support and you had a living will saying you do not want to be kept alive by artificial means - Your POA would not have to make that decision for you, they would follow YOUR decision.
EXAMPLE II: Let's say you're in good shape, but have suffered a severe head injury, making you unable to "think for yourself" - your living will doesn't give any direction about care - it would then be up to your POA to decide what's best for you.
I have both a living will - AND a designated Power of Attorney.


by anne8486 - 2008-01-02 11:01:41

this is probably waaay too late. But I just joined... I know that when I first got my pm every once in a while... more often than I would have liked it would feel like it was "fluttering". Almost like someone let a butterfly out in your chest. It wasn't comfortable but it wasn't unusually painful. You never get used to it, but it does stop. I can't remember how long it took... but it was the same sensation you feel when you call in and put the magnet over your pm or when you go in for a pm check. Nothing to worry about... I freaked a number of times and went to the hosp. for the first few. I was 12 so any problems at that age get two parents who panic. just take a deep breath and try to relax when it happens. If it doesn't I'd call your doctor. Hope this helps!

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As for my pacemaker (almost 7 years old) I like to think of it in the terms of the old Timex commercial - takes a licking and keeps on ticking.