Sunday Express article on faulty pacemakers

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The Sunday Express has a scare article on deaths caused by faulty pacemakers if you care to Google. 

It does not mention and maker to be responsible.

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  • Posted

    The Sunday Express says :

    A large-scale study has found implant failures account for up to 30 per cent of the sudden deaths of patients fitted with them.

    This adds up to as many as 2,000 deaths a year in the UK where they are used by up to a quarter of a million patients, with 50,000 more being implanted annually.

    The devices include pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators called ICDs which are fitted to help regulate faulty heart rhythms.

    Professor Zian Tseng, who led the new research, said: “This study shows that a leading cause of mortality in the developed world could be attributed to heart device problems, which is a major concern. In many cases these devices are saving lives but we assume they are infallible and they are not.”

    And did you see the link below the Pacemaker story,, "Health WARNING: Smartphones can cause pacemakers to FAIL" exclaim question cheesygrin

    Researcher Dr Carsten Lennerz said: "Pacemakers can mistakenly detect electromagnetic interference (EMI) from smartphones as a cardiac signal, causing them to briefly stop working. ...

    Wikipedia says :

    Potential sources of RFI and EMI include: various types of transmitters, doorbell transformers, toaster ovens, electric blankets, ultrasonic pest control devices, electric bug zappers, heating pads, and touch controlled lamps. Multiple CRT computer monitors or televisions sitting too close to one another can sometimes cause a "shimmy" effect in each other, due to the electromagnetic nature of their picture tubes, especially when one of their de-gaussing coils is activated.

    Electromagnetic interference at 2.4 GHz can be caused by 802.11b and 802.11g wireless devices, Bluetooth devices, baby monitors and cordless telephones, video senders, and microwave ovens.

    Switching loads (inductive, capacitive, and resistive), such as electric motors, transformers, heaters, lamps, ballast, power supplies, etc., all cause electromagnetic interference especially at currents above 2 amps. The usual method used for suppressing EMI is by connecting a snubber network, a resistor in series with a capacitor, across a pair of contacts. While this may offer modest EMI reduction at very low currents, snubbers do not work at currents over 2 A with electromechanical contacts.[9][10]

    Switched-mode power supplies can be a source of EMI, but have ...

    Scary stuff huh question So yeah, Pacemakers need looking at carefully smile

    • Posted

      I asked about microwave ovens and was told that they are all right as they are only on for a few minutes. I said that some items do take a long time to cook and during that time you are standing near it doing other things.

      There was also a warning on the hospital leaflet about electric razors saying to contact the pacemaker manufacturer to see if your razor was OK to use with it. I mentioned this to the ward sister and she said that all razors were OK to use. 

      The Daily Mail has taken up the Express story today and I also found an ongoing EU court case where the makers were having to supply new pacemakers and pay for the surgery costs.


    • Posted

      Obviously the manufacturers haven't heard of engineering redundancy into their Pacemakers. Seems they're a bit incompetent, it's not like it's a new idea neutral
    • Posted

      There have been faulty heart valves fitted to patients as well.

      I get my annual echo cardiogram on my three year old aortic valve on Friday.

    • Posted

      All of this doesn't instill one with confidence (in medical engineerings prowess) huh question neutral

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