First pacemaker

I am a little over 2 weeks out from having my first pacemaker for bradycardia. Not having pain so much as the strange feeling of having a foreign object in my body. How long does it take to get used to the new normal of feeling like a weight is bouncing around under your skin when you hit a bump in the road or the weird sensations when you move your arm?

 

Thanks


9 Comments

More sensitive after surgery

by CyborgMike - 2019-05-12 23:33:36

It is more sensitive after the surgery. Mine took a full six weeks to heal, before I was back to "normal" with little pain or tightness. Simple arm exercises will help loosen the tightness caused by the surgery and the device. I don't notice the device at all during the day, but I just got back from a 5 mile run and I can definately feel tightness and the lump. That said, it doesn't bother me when I feel it now. It is my friend. :)

It depends upon you and your body

by Theknotguy - 2019-05-13 11:19:58

I'm not sure if you ever get over the feeling of having a foreign object in your body.  I'm six years out and still am aware I have the pacemaker under my skin and on my left side. I think it was nine months before I got out of the car and walked across the parking lot without thinking of my pacemaker. But not everyone is that way. Are there times you completely forget about it?  Yes.  

For some people their skin is more flexible and there is more movement of the pacemaker under the skin.  I took one person out of the hospital a few months back whose pacemaker had migrated to under her armpit.  She had to  have it repositioned.  But most people don't have that problem.  

I did computer tech, repair, and network installation for 35 years so I'm more comfortable with a computer device.  I know not everyone is that way but it does help if you think of your device as something that will help you. 

If it really starts to bother you there are people with whom you can discuss your feelings.  Your attitude towards your device can affect your recovery and how you feel on a day-to-day basis.  

I hope everything else is going well for you.

Always there

by Gotrhythm - 2019-05-13 15:23:58

As Theknotguy says, people vary widely in how quickly they heal, and how sensitive they are. I for example, have never been able to feel the physical presence of a foreign body.

But I sure felt it emotionally. I hated knowing there was a thing in my chest, connected to my heart!

Whether the awareness of the pacemaker is physical or emotional, my answer is the same as Theknotguy's. Don't try to not-feel it. Don't try to push awareness away, or wish it gone. Instead, work on accepting it as your friend--someone who is always on your side, always looking out for you. Some people have found it helpful to give their pacemakers a name.

The day will come when you suddenly remember you have a pacemaker--and wonder how long it's been since you last thought about it.

 

Sometimes Reminded

by Jim_Ed - 2019-05-13 19:21:01

I will have to say that GOTRHYTHM's last sentence sums it up pretty well. However, depending on which side you get yours implanted, will depend on the type and frequency  of  reminders you will eventually have that reminds you that it is there.

I selected to have mine implanted on the right shoulder, because I drove a lot in my pickup truck and I didn't want the safety belt shoulder harness coming over my left shoulder and interfering with it. But, I also have to be careful when shooting my rifle on the right side while hunting as to where I place the butt stock against my shoulder.

There are times when you will wake up sleeping with the ICP on the mattress side, and you will find it is more comfortable if you turn over.

But after a short period of time, when the new wears off, it will become fairly unnoticeable most of the time.

Again, I like GOTRYHTHM's last statement.

memories

by ROBO Pop - 2019-05-13 20:22:32

I've had devices for pushing 13 years. I only remember my CRT-D everytime security slams me against the wall, spreads my legs and gropes me searching for the cause of their alarm.

Learn to accept your device. Recognize it's there to protrct you and you'll forget about it...at least until you set off security alarms.

Side note: neat little trick. Make sure you carry your pacemaker ID card at all times, then when you shop lift and set off the alarm you can whip the card out and explain your pacemaker set it off.

 

 

Thanks

by Blindside - 2019-05-13 21:11:55

Thank you to everyone for the responses and great information.  ROBO Pop I will let you know how my next shopping trip goes!

I'm there with you

by IamBonzwa - 2019-05-15 19:33:46

I have no advice because I am only a few days from my implant. But I can totally relate. I guess it's just something we're going to have to learn to adjust to. We gotta have it right? I guess so too. We will adjust. Good luck. 

Feeling the PM

by davbrn1765 - 2019-05-15 19:42:50

My first PM took about two months to settle in to where I didn't notice it much. Now I am on a PM/ICD and its a lot bigger. Still getting use to it, but range of motion is reduced. Its hard to touch my right shoulder with my left hand. You will not have much restrictions on lifestyle other than what you were given when you were discharged. 

Just give it time

by nightskye65 - 2019-05-18 00:36:02

Heys guys:

 I have had my pacemaker coming up on 2 1/2 years. It definitely took some getting used to and quite honestly was a struggle for me mentally and emotionally dealing with it.    As your body heals and time goes by and you slowly start getting back to life as normal you will just suddenly find that you start having day after day where you forget about it completely and you don’t even remember that you have one.

 For the most part that’s where I am at. But don’t get me wrong there are definitely times when it makes itself known whether just being on comfortable doing something or sitting or laying down or one of my grandkids bumping it or sometimes it just randomly feels achy around the area or something.

 Honestly I try to just distract myself or adjust myself and try not to think about it because I tend to be an over thinker sometimes and when I start to dwell on it it can get me down sometimes or causing me a little anxiety.

 But for the most part I am thankful for it and just have to remind myself that it’s now just a part of me!

 I hope that you are recovering well and that you are not having any complications and will reach the point soon where are you start having those days where you forget you even have it 😊

~Julie

 

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