Pacemaker incision

Hi everyone,

I had a pacemaker put in 6 weeks ago and everything is working well.  My question is: my incision is still sore especially to the touch.  The doctor said it may be because I don't have much fat due to the fact I'm a small person.  Or does it take much longer to heal up?  Makes any sense?


Hi Kari!

by Lavender - 2023-10-02 22:02:54

Six weeks in isn't terribly long. You're still healing inside too. If the incision is swollen or red or oozing any fluid, you need to tell the doctor. If it looks clean and dry, it's probably fine. 

Hoping you feel a bit better each day until you're completely healed!


by piglet22 - 2023-10-03 07:15:12

Six weeks is still quite fresh, but I wouldn't expect discomfort to go on much longer.

On the scale of things, a pacemaker implantation is fairly straightforward, but don't underestimate how much pushing and shoving goes on, plus the not insignificant matter of inserting leads into your heart chambers, if that applies.

A conventional pacemaker and connections is about the size of a slim matchbox and needs a decent sized pocket to be formed quite close to skin and muscle which is quite brutal and the whole lot is done through a tight incision.

I'm surprised there's no mention of a follow up inspection about a week afterwards.

Certainly on my first device, I had to go to the GP surgery locally for nurse to remove stitches and remove the largish pressure dressing.

I don't remember any long term discomfort, but even over 18-years on, it still itches.

The replacement 7 years ago wa a bit more uncomfortable but that's to be expected after 11 years of being bedded in.

Next one due in 15-months and not quite so keen on the prospect.


I believe the correct medical term for slim is "not fleshy"

Pain after pacemaker insertion.

by Selwyn - 2023-10-03 15:04:56

Our survey showed that there is a minority with more prolonged pain.   for the full survey of our members experiences.

or see

Healing rates are the same in the thin or more padded people. Rates of healing slow with age, state of nutrition, other illnesses etc. 


by Lavender - 2023-10-03 16:35:41

I'm grateful seeing your comment that your pacemaker incision still gets itchy after all this time! I'm two and a half years in. I just told my pcp yesterday at my biannual checkup that I get itchy there from time to time. He said it's ok! I was thinking it's a reaction to the pacemaker metal but he said no. 

Pacemaker incision.

by kari - 2023-10-03 16:40:41

Thank you all for your comments.  Selwyn I will look up the sites.

Another question if you all know or I will post another subject. I'm thinking of going to Las Vegas, Nv and wonder if I should even go into any gambling casinos with all those machines.  Any thoughts?  Thank you, Kari

Ramblin and gamblin

by Lavender - 2023-10-03 18:52:21

Here's a link with a discussion of this:

Sounds like it's safe but maybe not for your wallet😆


by piglet22 - 2023-10-04 07:47:55

Don't worry about your device, but sew up your pockets and leave the credit cards behind.

Watch the others lose their money.

Here's the skinny

by Gotrhythm - 2023-10-04 13:01:49

I started to answer this yesterday but got interrupted.

 I've had two pacemakers. The first when I was a normal weight, around 135lb, and the second, a year ago, around 110lb. I have since lost another 10lb.

The first pacemaker I had minimal discomfort, which quickly resolved. After a few months, I didn't feel it at all, except for a couple of times a year when there would be an odd itching that felt like it was deep inside. Once the scar faded, the pacemaker was next to invisible under the skin.

The second pacemaker was implanted about a year ago. The pain/discomfort lasted at least 6 weeks and although there's no real discomfort today, I can still feel the pacemaker if I think about it. At 100lbs, it's much more sensitive to rubbing/irritation by my clothes. The big shocker is that the pacemaker is clearly outlined, wires and all, under the skin. I would post a picture, but it really is sort of shocking and I don't want to scare a newbie who's worried about cosmetic results.

There's no question that the presence (or absence)  of a layer of fat just under the skin makes a big difference in overall comfort. A bit of padding is a good thing.

About the Vegas trip. I concur with others. No danger to your pacemaker. Worry about protecting your wallet.


To hears the skinny

by kari - 2023-10-04 13:54:42

I appreciate your answers.  I too have lost weight before my pacemaker installation.  I'm 109lbs.  My PM protrudes a bit they said, what it is, is what you got. I'm disspointed in that.  It's partly due to my weight and no flesh to bury it.

It has never itched yet, but still some fludders and twitches at times when I want to sleep.

All in all, it's working and no more dizzy spells every day.

Okay, I'll try to protect my wallet, Ha! Good advice.

Piglett22, I'll sew up my wallet and watch everyone else lose. 

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