Electrical shocking after Pacemaker Instal

Not sure who to talk on this.  But right after I got my 2 lead pacemaker installed, I started have these electrical charges start at the heart or right at the pacemker.  The charges goes across my body and then down to the bottom of my hips or all the way to my feet.  My fingers tingle and I have problems making my fingers move correctly or hold on to something in my hand.  I feel these electrics shocks many times an hour.  It is especially hard electrics shock when I rise from a prone position and keep going until I am able to get to the light switch or maybe reach a wall that I can hold onto.   If I don't do that, I will end up passing out.  I asked the EP, and of course there is no way possible that the pacemaker could possibily be the cause.  I am disappointed that the cardiac doc couldn't put on his thinking cap and maybe help out a patient.  No EP has every made a mistake or pinch a nerve in any procedure that they have done.  So does anyone have an idea of what this might be and what to do about it?  I really need some help here.  I can't live with a pacemaker that electrically shocks be for the next 40 years.



by Penguin - 2024-03-29 19:41:56

Hi Spencer, 

I'm really sorry to hear that you're suffering with this. 

There are pacing setting related issues which can cause intermittent shocks. See the FAQ section in the Learn tab above. Its in a section concerned with malfunctions / what can go wrong with a pacemaker.   

You had your pacemaker implanted 1 month ago and reported nothing then. Have you had any pacing changes made since ?  Any changes made at the time should be listed in your pacemaker print out.  The print out is a download of your settings, any changes made to them and any events or alerts that the pacemaker stored in it's memory for later analysis by your techs. When there are programming issues that cause issues with current / thresholds etc. they are sometimes flagged up as alerts too.  Ask if any alerts were noted when your device was interrogated.

Sometimes, quite rarely, pacemaker manufacturers issue 'advisories' on pacemaker models.  These are warnings, if you like, which infom your clinic / doctors about possible malfunctions.  You should be informed if one of these affects your device. Have you received one of these from your clinic? One of these might cause electrical malfunction. 

Re: a trapped nerve. I wouldn't know about pacemaker placement and trapped nerves or the symptoms that might cause. Perhaps someone else could explain?   

This could have a simpler explanation too. When pacemakers are first implanted the amount of current applied is higher to help the wires bed in and this can cause discomfort. Some people are very sensitive to it and report shock like feelings and others barely notice it. The current can be adjusted if this is the cause. 

Sometimes you need to use a process of elimination to get to what is causing the problem. Try these question first a) Is the device oversensing? b) Is the current turned up high to help the wires bed in? c) have you made any changes to my pacemaker settings and what were they? d) were any alerts issued at my check?  or e) are there any advisories relating to malfunction of my device? 

Let us know if you don't have any results from these enquiries.  I can't think of anything else at the moment, but there are lots of knowledgeable patients on here who might be able to help further either now or if you draw a blank. 

Sounds very unpleasant and distressing.  I hope you can find a reason for it.



helpful information

by new to pace.... - 2024-03-29 20:24:43

It would help if you put some information in your profile, such as make, model, where you live.  As sometimes our answers are different where you live or make of your pacemaker.

new to pace


by Flo - 2024-03-29 21:42:28


I hope you get answers from your doctors quickly.  The references Penguin gave in the second paragraph above can be very helpful and informative.  

I have been having an issue with, what turned out to be, Inappropriate Mode Switching for some time. Pressure on my back laying in bed or leaning back in a chair caused heart rate to jump from resting 60 to 80 and get stuck there.  On my first visit to my new EP, during the pacemaker interrogation, atrial lead noise was noted with inappropriate mode switching. Atrial sensing was reprogrammed.  Much better now but still an issue.  I hope to make more progress on my next visit.


Electric shock like sensations following my implant

by Gemita - 2024-03-30 07:15:45

Spencer I experienced electric shock like sensations following my implant and was told this could be due to trauma to delicate nerves or blood vessels during implant but that it would likely heal over time.  It did subside but it took months to do so and some neuropathic pain meds to tone it down.  

A number of members have reported having these electric shock like sensations following implant.  Others might report a variety of other sensations, like ant bites.  My shocks seemed to start in the device area and shoot to different areas of the chest and to my upper back.  It was very unpleasant especially as it could happen at any time night and day, but I have had these electric shock sensations also occur after other surgeries, so it was not unusual for me.  I suppose I have a highly sensitive nervous system too.

Other members have already given excellent advice.  From your worrisome symptoms, in the very least you need a proper assessment to get to the bottom of this and perhaps an X-ray to have a look at the position of your device and leads too if this hasn’t recently been done.   Keep going back to your doctors or go to A&E/ER until you get some relief from your symptoms.  Just be aware that the electric shock like sensations can be a normal part of healing of nerves/blood vessels when these have been traumatised, but that feeling faint or near to fainting is certainly not a normal part of healing following pacemaker implant and should be investigated

Ant Bites

by Grateful Heart - 2024-03-31 00:19:32

I always said it felt like ant bites.  It was quick, sharp and it hurt!  For me, it was the nerves kitting back together. 

I have a great Cardio and great EP who do listen to me when something doesn't feel/ seem right.  You may need some setting adjustments but if you concerns are not considered and explained, I would seek another opinion.  If for nothing else, to ease your mind.

Grateful Heart     

Electric Shocks chest to feet

by Selwyn - 2024-03-31 13:29:27

Sorry to hear of your distressiing symptoms. I gather you have not had your pacemaker too long, though there is nothing in your bio.

Anything that connects hands and feet with symptoms such as tingling is either the brain or chemical imbalance. 

There is absolutely no way you can blame your pacemaker as a cause from an anatomical point of view.


Top of the list has to be anxiety. Tingling in limbs  is a common symptom ( as are chest pains) .  Overbreathing can cause tetany ( like hand cramps) as you blow off CO2.

Distrubances of electrolytes, such as calcium disorders, from one cause or another can cause such symptoms. Other electrolytes can be responsible.

Once you have considered these possibilities, you are left with a strange collection of neurological disease.

Common things occur commonly.  It may be that your lightheadedness/dizziness is related to your pacemaker settings. 

I am not suprised your cardiology team find themselves out of their area of expertise.




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