tattoos and an ICD

I am thinking about getting my first tattoo on top of 'old sparky' after the tenderness goes away.

Anyone have and experience with interference from a tattoo gun?



by Pookie - 2008-06-11 05:06:30

not to rain on your parade, but I have read/heard that it is not advisable to get a tattoo over your pacemaker site or incision....

perhaps you should ask your cardiologist or doctor.

but what do I know!! you might wanna do a bit of research before you go ahead with one.


Tattoo On Of Pacemaker

by Nim Rod - 2008-06-11 06:06:09

I say think twice before getting a tattoo on top of your pacemaker implant site.

First, while it is rare, infections do happen as a result of getting a tattoo and I can think of no worse place to have an infection than on top of a pacemaker.

Second, the tattoo gun will emit an electromagnetic field, I'm sure it is not a really strong field, but it will be generated very close to your pacemaker so while it may not hurt the pacemaker, it is not doing to do it any good, for certain.

Maybe this is one of those times better safe than sorry.


by Smart Redd - 2008-06-11 08:06:14

I have no opinion on the issue. I also have no desire to get a tattoo. However, I have had the following discussions:

When the surgeon was closing, I told him to do a neat job or I'd have to get a tattoo to cover the scar. He didn't say anything about it being bad or dangerous idea. . .
My daughter-in-law is a tattoo artist. She has a client who had her tattoo "Open here", an arrow and a zipper design over the incision.


I thought about it...

by turboz24 - 2008-06-11 11:06:19

I though about getting a tattoo of my ICD over the ICD. you can see the ICD clearly, all I need is the grey metallic color, and the labeling with the pastic color connector and I would be complete........

But I consider Tattoo's just silly anyways, so.

Goodness no......

by auntiesamm - 2008-06-12 03:06:48

You will no doubt find someone who will tell you it is okay. I'm not a fan of tats, however, my dad had them on his arms from his Navy days in the 1930s. I was absolutely fascinated by them from the time I first saw them as a toddler. Especially the anchor with USN across it and the heart with MOTHER inside it. Can't tell you how many times I "read" daddy's arms! LOL

If you are thinking a tattoo that identifies or depicts your device, why not do it on the other wise with an arrow pointing at your ICD? Or on your back? I think you could be creative and come up with something quite unique! But, stay away from your ICD site; it is far too valuable to mess with. Let us know what you decide to do. I will be curious! Take care and God bless.


Not ontop of Spanky

by gldoble - 2008-06-12 04:06:10

Hi there, I got a tat this year 1 st and not my last. Its a 12" dragon on my left arm. I had this done one one of my trips to China. As long as the shop is clean and they use new needles on the gun and its not placed above your new time keeper, you'll be fine.

Just don't have it placed above your PM.



by peter - 2008-06-12 04:06:15

They might hit a lead thats just under the skin and damage it. You have the rest of your body so why not use that if you must. Cheers Peter

from a tattoo artist

by tpod - 2008-06-12 09:06:06

i spoke with my tattoo artist recently about getting something over my scar. he said any tattoo artist worth their salt will wait AT LEAST one year before agreeing to tattoo over a pacemaker scar.

just FYI. :)
let us know what you decide! and i wanna see!

Wouldn't it get ruined?

by Suze - 2008-06-12 10:06:36

What about when you have the pacemaker replaced in a few years? They may use the old incision to open up the pocket but that then has to heal. It seems to me that it would mess up the tattoo.

Just a thought....

Scar tissue

by ElectricFrank - 2008-06-12 12:06:05

My first thought is that the tattoo generates scar tissue. With the inevitable replacement of the pacer extra scar tissue over the site could cause problems with healing at that time.
This isn't an expert opinion..just my thoughts.

My second though was "It would be fun to have a knob labeled Hi and Lo".


You know you're wired when...

Muggers want your ICD, not your wallet.

Member Quotes

I had a pacemaker when I was 11. I never once thought I wasn't a 'normal kid' nor was I ever treated differently because of it. I could do everything all my friends were doing; I just happened to have a battery attached to my heart to help it work.