In Certain Cases Elderly Person Feels Unwell


My mom has tachicardia. She gets tired fast and can't do chores for long. 7 years ago she had ICD installed. She has double chamber pacemaker from St Jude and I think it is model Endurity DR PM2160 or PM2162. I am not sure.

She is currently trialing hearing aid Unitron Moxi B7-R RIC and she experiences increased heart rate and feels not so well only when connected to a tablet through Bluetooth. The hearing aid is at least 16 centimeters away from ICD which is supposed to be safe distance from interference. Moreso the hearing aids are too small to cause interference so I am not sure why she feels that way.

Another concern is she feels unwell when she undergoes her ICD checks first semi-anually and now yearly. When technician places wireless loop on her neck and starts testing she feels unwell during and after the procedure. She describes unpleasant feeling in her chest. We tend to sit several minutes after the test for her to feel normal before we leave medical center.

So I am wondering if anyone else feels like that, especially during testing of ICD? Is this normal? I also wonder why would she feel unwell with hearing aid only when it is connected to tablet through Bluetooth.



Feeling unwell with check up

by Selwyn - 2023-01-22 13:55:29

Sorry to hear of your Mother's problems.

The norm for checkups of a pacemaker is for the tech. people to increase the heart rate to make sure all the programming parameters are working.  This causes palpitations, sometimes an increase in breathing and a feeling of anxiety, and is clearly exercise. If there is chest pain at the time this may suggest angina.

I cannot explain the blue tooth effect of the tablet on the pacemaker/ICD. I have blue toothed hearing aids ( now been through 2 different manufacturers) and not problem. If it was a blue tooth effect if you be experienced with other blue toothed equipment. 



by AgentX86 - 2023-01-22 13:59:28

I can't speak to the ongoing symptoms (but tachycardia will do is) but Bluetooth isn't going to be a problem. The pacemaker is specifically designed for Bluetooth.

Feeling weird during interrogations is perfectly normal. They're testing the pacemaker and her hearts reaction to the tests. There is on that makes me feel like I'm in an elevator in a highrise when it starts down. The bottom just falls out. The device tech knows how I'll react and will warn me and make sure I'm  ot going to fall out of the chair. After, I'm OK but we're all different.

testing of ICD

by Persephone - 2023-01-22 14:13:59

I can fully relate to this, though I just have a PM. Consider asking her medical team to put a note in her history that she is very sensitive to the interrogation - perhaps they don't have to go through the full range of tests every time. Also consider asking them to allow her to quietly sit for several minutes afterward to achieve calmness. I personally feel the need to "rush through" the appt since the staff typically seem so pressed for time.

You may want to consider accupuncture as well. Some members here have reported great results. There are practioners who specialize in treating older individuals

hearing aid

by Persephone - 2023-01-22 14:19:15

Any possibility that parent is hearing her heart beat via the insertion of the hearing aid, and it is making her uncomfortable?

Hearing aid

by AgentX86 - 2023-01-22 22:28:55

Sure. The hearing aid is in the middle of the head where there are arteries everywhere. Any sound would conduct directly to the hearing aid which could amplify it.

A heartbeat sound is called "pulsatile tinnitus" and can be caused by a number of things.  One of the more common is ear wax.  It's certainly possible that the hearing aid is doing the same.  There are other causes that should be ruled out, though.

BTW, I have pulsatile tinnitus a pretty high percentage of the time.  It just fades into the background.

Mind over matter.  If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.


by TheOneGuy - 2023-01-23 05:04:17

@Persephone The model in question is not PM? You mean to ask medical team to pause the testing and let her sit to attain calmness?

@AgentX86 The hearing aid is not deep inside the head. It is receiver in canal. She does not hear heartbeat.

I just read that telemetry wand communicates with pacemaker on radio frequency.


by AgentX86 - 2023-01-23 16:22:07

Sorry, I don't know what made me think that she could hear her pulse. I get it all the time (like right now).

An ICD is a PM with the addition of a defibrillator.

The wand is a near-field communitcation, rather like some phones placed next to each other can communicate securely or RFID tags.  The remote interrogation feature of modern pacemakers is Bluetooth/LE. You can often see it pop up in your phone's Bluetooth setup screen.  Some use an app on a smart-phone to do remote interogations. A separate box isn't needed.

For security reasons, only the NFC can alter the state (settings) of the PM. Bluetooth is read-only.

PM settings

by TheOneGuy - 2023-01-24 05:46:53

@AgentX86 I am concerned about all these distant wireless methods of connection to pacemakers in terms of security vulnerability. I read an old article about hackers who were able to steal personal patient's information storted in pacemaker. With technological advancements the thought of hackers gaining access to pacemaker's function is scary.

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