ICD's in a factory setting

Hi
I am diganosed with hypertrophic cariomyopathy and have been told for sometime I should have an icd as a preventive measure. I am unsure whether or not to proceed with one. I work in a factory (shipping and receiving) actually it is a foundry. There are coreless furnaces in the building that probably put out somewhat of a magnetic field. I do not work directly with the furnaces but pass by them periodacally.This is good paying job and I don't want to do anything to jepordise it. I have talked to many people about this and most do not seem to think it would be a poblem. They say you have to get really close to a magnetic field to do anything and then it would probably just shut it off until I would get away from it.. Does anyone have any thoughts on this.? I have not said anything to my employer just out of fear that they would tell me that I can not work there with an icd implanted.. How long does it take to recover from the implant? It has crossed my mind to take a couple of weeks vac. get the icd and then return to work without saying anything to my employer.. Any Thoughts. Also I think I am going to have an electrophysioology study done first to see if I really need one in the first place


5 Comments

Questions...

by dward - 2008-07-29 11:07:29

I was very concerned about the whole "Magnetic field" issue too. I work with vary powerful Sound Systems, which means very powerful magnets in speakers that I have to work within a few feet.

They also told me that it wouldn't be a problem.
I was also worried about airport security because I travel a lot, but was told that wouldn't be a problem.

So I got my PM and still work around the speakers, go though the airport screening devices, etc.

I have had no problems at all. I use blue tooth devices, wireless laptops, cell phone (on the opposite side of my PM) - again, no problems.

Newer devices are much better shielded than the older models, however it appears the stigma that pretty much ANYTHING can affect these devices, is still attached.

Depending on what country you live in, your employer may not be able to discriminate due to a medical condition and, unless they can prove you would be at increased risk due to your ICD, could not take your job away.

As far as your not telling your work, you need to be sure you're not doing yourself a disservice. Some companies require that you disclose significant medical conditions (I would just check to be sure) PLUS, it would be good to get a medic alert necklace or bracelet in the event you are in an accident and your first aid people are trying to help - they will know you have an ICD.

As far as your recovery question, it varies - but your Doctor should be able to give you a good idea. I was up and about the next day. Was given strict instruction to not lift my left arm over my shoulder and not lift anything heavy for about 5 weeks (just to ensure the tissue around the leads heals properly.)

As far as really needing one. These things are pretty expensive. They don't usually implant them unless it's it's necessary. Getting a second opinion or additional tests done is always a good idea, but if the tests show it's a good idea - then it's a good idea!

Cheers,
DW

hcm and icd

by Vai - 2008-07-29 12:07:45

Just a couple of comments to add to DW's excellent response.

1. An ICD or a PM is not absolutely necessary just because you have HCM (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy). I was diagnosed with HCM for 8+ years and never had anything done - no ICD, no PM no meds, except for a regular annual check-up with the full works (ecg, echo, x-ray, blood test etc) . Doc told me to live life normal until symptoms surfaced (an eventuality).
2. Arrythmia and a-fib symptoms surfaced which led to medication for 2 years and which eventually led to a PM implant to help manage the a-fib.
3. Although I was told an ICD may also be yet an eventuality, that time has not yet come.
4. By all means get a EP opinion and most of all trust your body and ask what are these symptoms that you are experiencing now that prompt your doc to suggest a ICD as an urgent preventive measure, presumably from CHF (congestive heart failure).
5. Since the Pm I have never had any problems with magnetic fields just passing through. I have walked through countless airport security detectors, wanded over the PM site, security doors, wireless networks, use a variety of telecommunication devices and visited telecommunications towers etc and I never felt anything adverse. However each person may be affected differently.
6. Keeping your job naturally is important to you. It is more so especially if you are to get an ICD. Normally your current insurance coverage offered by the company should continue after the implant. You may want to check this out. It is important to do this as getting new insurance after the implant has proven to be very diffcult

Wish the best for you in your decision.

Optional ICD

by ElectricFrank - 2008-07-30 02:07:08

Have you pursued the issue of needing an ICD with more than one doc? There are some who only recommend one if you have experienced some sort of event. At the other extreme I have seen articles where they are recommended for anyone who has even the slightest arrhythmias.
So it is really a matter of what your risk tolerance is. If you don't get one and are wrong, you will only be aware of your mistake for 15 seconds or so.
By the way an ICD has more potential for being seriously affected by interference than a pacemaker. With the ICD the effect of interference can well be having it deliver an unneeded shock where with the pacemaker you might not even notice a skipped or extra beat. An unexpected shock could be hazardous around some types of machinery.

frank

ICD

by Thunderdrummer - 2008-07-30 03:07:55

I don't see there would be a problem. I am around lots of musical gear al the time that for sure puts out magnetic field. You can find out from your doctor if he feels that it is a bad idea to still work there. I would just make shure that i was fully recoversd and go to work and pick different routs if you can and see how you feel. That is the biggest thing.

Thunder

thanks

by truetom1 - 2008-07-30 05:07:58

Thanks to all that replied.
your replies have eased my mind a bit. I have been digonoised with hcm for 4-5 years now (hereditary) I have been told by 2 diff. dr. that I am high risk for sudden death and that the recommend an icd. I have been putting it off but seem to be having more symtoms as I get older, light headed, shortness of breath,tired more easily. I think I will go with the ep test and if they still recommend an icd I go ahead and get one. I guess I will put it in the lords hands.. what happens happens. Thanks for all your advice and thoughts.
tom

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