Hi I went to my  GP today to get to renew my script and he decided just to do a full check up on me. And he did a ECG and he was getting alot of interference on the report.

What a Googled afterwards i think he made a mistake of putting the leads in the wrong place.

But my question is I'm feeling a little tender around the pacemaker hurts a little. Will the ecg  change any settings on the pacemaker or cause I little discomfort.






by Penguin - 2024-02-26 04:29:22

Quite often the nurse / doctor may have a few goes with the ECG if it doesn't produce a credible / clear reading. Moving during an ECG can cause this. Can you provide a link to what you have read?

ECGs don't change settings on the pacemaker.  The feeling of tenderness should be unconnected as far as I'm aware.  Has anything else happened to cause this?

Edit: Read Papa Mike's reply for accurate info. 


by NOFEAR-ZN - 2024-02-26 04:38:44

It says A Pacemaker patient usually requires a different electrode patch placement configuration than a non-pacemaker patient. Do not place an ECG electrode directly over the pacemaker generator. Place the electrode patches 3-5 inches away from the pacemaker generator area to avoid electrical interference.

I don't my GP new that 

ECG (Electrocardiogram)

by Gemita - 2024-02-26 04:55:16

Nofear-ZN, a pacemaker may cause interference and produce ECG irregularities which is why ECGs should always be performed by an experienced operator or read by an experienced doctor who can decipher what is significant and what might be artefact.  Some ECG findings may resemble specific arrhythmias.  I hope your doctor did the ECG again?  

I am sure the doctor would have checked your pulse to see whether it was fast or irregular though before doing the ECG.  The ECG machine is designed to pick up electrical activity within the heart but it will pick up electrical activity from nearby devices too!  Did you have your mobile on?

Although good placement of ECG electrodes matter, I would not start questioning your doctor’s ability to perform his duties, but would ask politely for the test to be repeated or for further monitoring if your doctor is in any way concerned or you continue to experience difficult symptoms?

Take a look at the following link in case it helps. I see you have a Biotronik pacemaker

by Gemita - 2024-02-26 05:15:35

The link should be copied and pasted into your main browser to open.

If you are at all concerned, you could also ask your pacemaker clinic to do a quick check of your essential settings, especially if you have new troublesome symptoms, but I cannot imagine that any setting could be "permanently" changed by doing an ECG?


by piglet22 - 2024-02-26 05:32:21

I see you are in South Africa and things might be different for you.

In my experience, UK, GPs rarely spend time doing these tests themselves and more likely get one of the support team to do it. Possibly the fact that some precautions might apply to pacemaker patients get overlooked.

There's also a dependence on interpretive software that can churn out long lists of conditions that aren't actually present.

Interpreting ECGs with a PM present and maybe other underlying rhythm problems is a specialist job.

ECG and mobile phone interference.

by Lurker - 2024-02-26 11:25:36

Interesting about the mobile phone interference. found this.

It was observed that the electrocardiographic system was vulnerable to the interference generated by the GSM mobile phone working with maximum transmit power and in DTX mode when the device was placed in a distance shorter than 7.5 cm from the ECG electrode located on the surface of the chest.

7.5cm = 3"

something I did not know.

EKG and ECG are actually different spellings of the same diagnostic test that monitors your heart's electrical activity. EKG is the abbreviation from the German spelling of electrocardiogram (which is elektrokardiogramm in German).Nov 9, 2022

Doc DX


No effect

by PapaMike - 2024-02-28 04:12:00

The ECG will not interfere with the safe operation of, or change the settings of a pacemaker. 

Noisy leads are usually one two things, (1) an electro-magnetic field, or (2) poor contact between electrode and skin. 

A mobile phone is very unlikely to have any effect unless it is directly adjacent to the electrodes/wires. A phone connected to a charger is a little different but that is because of the charging rather than any transmission. 

Other electrical devices should be moved away or turned off at the wall, and I'm referring to riser/recliners or electric beds, etc.

Hairy chests are a nightmare for causing poor connection noise and so a quick run over with a single use razor usually does the trick. Otherwise replace the electrode sticker. 

You should not move electrodes from their specific positions. The way the ecg works is by detecting the pathway of the electrical movement through the heart. Its sort of a snap shot layed out like the hands of a clock. You move the electrodes then you change the directional aspect and hence change the waveform. You do that you'll get false readings and will miss changes in the normal sinus rhythm. You miss ST elevation because you've moved the electrode, and the patient is having a barndoor STEMI, then you're medically negligent.

Paced rhythmns can be challenging to read as understandably the readout is not a true representation of what the heart is doing itself, but then ecg alone does not give a full picture, hence bloods, echo, xray, etc should also be considered.

A lot of GPs haven't seen an ECG since they were junior doctors, so they can't be expected to be specialists in the field. I've lost count of the GP surgeries I've been called to because they think their patient is having an MI. I will read the ecg as it is being printed and then hand it to the GP, and more often than not they will look at me in horror. Its very funny because they have zero clue what they're looking at. 

But again, to answer the OP, the ecg will have no effect on your device or its settings. Any pain will be unrelated. If its localised tenderness then maybe you've knocked or twisted it. If its chest pain, central or otherwise, get it checked out.

I just found this out

by TLee - 2024-02-29 18:12:21

I get copies of my ecg readout, which means nothing to me, but there is usually a summary from the doctor. I had noticed that every one of my results has the note: "Abnormal ecg". I had never asked about this, but last visit the nurse was particularly chatty so I brought it up. She told me (as comments here have already said) that it is because of my device and doesn't indicate a problem. I trust my medical team to know what to look for, which is probably why I never questioned it before, but it is nice to know I'm not really abnormal! 

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