Pacemakers have been a great influence in medical technology, and they’ve become much more reliable over the past 50 years. Like any piece of technology, though, pacemakers are not perfect and are subject to malfunction. These malfunctions can be life-threatening if not taken care of right away.
Pacemakers are rarely known to experience failures, but it’s important to note that they can happen. Reasons for failure can include battery depletion, loose or broken wiring, and electromagnetic interference from other devices. If your pacemaker fails, the results can be catastrophic.
There are approximately 3 million patients worldwide fitted with pacemakers, and each year about 600,000 people will have a pacemaker implanted. With so many people dependent on pacemakers to live, it’s important to have a contingency plan in place if a pacemaker fails to function properly. A good way to be prepared is by having a medical alert system. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three citizens over the age of 65 will experience a fall every year. There may not always be someone around to get help if you fall, so a medical alert system could help save your life.
The device can be worn around your neck, and help is just a push of a button away. Some even have the capability to detect falls and can call for help automatically if a fall is detected. A medical alert system enables more seniors to live independently in their homes longer.
If you’re worried that a medical alert device may cause interference with your pacemaker, contact your doctor and the manufacturer of your pacemaker to make sure that it is not susceptible to RF emissions consistent with the frequency of your medical alert device.
Seniors with a pacemaker should also be aware of what symptoms of potential pacemaker malfunction should prompt an immediate call for medical assistance. If you are feeling faint or dizzy, having trouble breathing, or experiencing any chest pain or an increased heart rate, you should get in touch with medical help right away. Pacemakers are able to help people live full and rich lives, but technology isn’t always perfect. Having a medical alert device in addition to your pacemaker can help keep you active and happy without having to worry about what can go wrong.