CAN I GET MRI SCANS WITH THIS PACEMAKER?
The Endurity MRI™ pacemaker is an MRI ready (also referred to as MR conditional) pacemaker. You can receive an MRI scan with the Endurity MRI pacemaker under certain parameters. Prior to having any MRI scan, talk with your doctor about the MRI scan you need and any specific parameters.
If you have an Abbott MR conditional pacemaker, download your MRI patient ID card.
WHY IS MRI COMPATIBILITY IMPORTANT?
MRI is fast becoming a preferred diagnostic imaging tool used by physicians in the treatment of cancer, stroke, heart-related conditions, and musculoskeletal disorders or injury. Because of its high-resolution image quality and low radiation risk, MRI is often selected over other diagnostic techniques. The use of MRI continues to grow. By having an MRI ready pacemaker, you will have the option of getting an MRI scan if the need arises.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I CAN SAFELY UNDERGO AN MRI SCAN WITH MY PACEMAKER?
As a patient with an MR conditional system, you should have received a special patient card that identifies you as having an MR conditional system. It is important for you to carry this card with you at all times. Sometimes MRI procedures are planned, and other times they are needed under unexpected circumstances. You will need to let the healthcare professionals caring for you, as well as the MRI technologist or radiologist, know that you have an MR conditional system. With an MR conditional system, you can be comfortable knowing that the device has been designed for safety under set conditions in the MRI environment.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER AN MRI SCAN WITH MY PACEMAKER?
Your pacemaker needs to be put into special MRI settings for you to safely undergo an MRI scan. There are two ways your doctor might do this. The first way is for your doctor to program your pacemaker to the special MRI settings ahead of time and store those settings in the pacemaker. This programming happens during a follow-up appointment. Then, when you need an MRI scan, the MRI settings are enabled by a clinician, who places a small hand-held device over your pacemaker. The hand-held device uses radio waves to communicate with your pacemaker and enable the preprogrammed MRI settings. Activating the MRI settings is painless and takes only moments. The second method involves programming your device to MRI settings when it is determined you need an MRI scan. With this method, your doctor uses the programmer to temporarily set your device to MRI settings before your MRI scan. You can then safely under the MRI procedure.
After the MRI scan, your device needs to be returned to its regular settings. In other words, your MRI settings need to be disabled. This can be accomplished in the same two ways in which your MRI settings were enabled. With the first method, the hand-held device is placed back over your device to disable MRI settings and enable your pacemaker to go back to its permanent settings. With the second method, the programmer is used to program your device back to its regular settings after the scan. With either method, your device is placed back to its regular settings.
Your MR conditional pacemaker is designed to give your heart the support it needs, in addition to ensuring you can receive the best in diagnostic imaging in the future should that need arise. Your doctor is the best source of information about your total overall health. It is important to discuss any questions or concerns you might have with him or her.
IS IT SAFE TO PASS THROUGH METAL DETECTORS AND AIRPORT SECURITY SYSTEMS WITH A PACEMAKER?
It is considered safe to pass through a metal detector and airport security system. Walk through the systems at your normal walking rate. When security personnel perform a search with a handheld wand, request that the search be done quickly and that the wand be held over your pacemaker for no more than a second.
WHAT EXERCISES ARE SAFE WITH A PACEMAKER?
Talk to your doctor about your activities, especially about vigorous or strenuous exercise, but exercise and activity are healthy parts of life with a pacemaker.
CAN I USE A CELL PHONE WITH A PACEMAKER?
Cellular phones send electromagnetic signals, which can interfere with your pacemaker. You can minimize the risk by taking simple precautions, like:
- Not carrying the cell phone in a pocket or bag over the pacemaker
- Holding the cell phone to the ear furthest from the pacemaker
St. Jude Medical currently has put special filters in our pacemakers to prevent cell phone interference. Learn more about electromagnetic interference.
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