Pacemaker concerns

Pacemakers are small, implanted electronic devices that monitor your heart’s rhythm and, when necessary, generate a painless electrical impulse that triggers a heartbeat. The latest models not only help people stay active later in life, they’re also more compatible with today’s technology.

Pacemakers have two basic working parts: the generator, which is implanted under the skin between the shoulder and chest, and one or more wires that stretch from the generator to the heart. These wires, called leads (pronounced leeds), are built to flex and move freely when the arm or shoulder nearest the pacemaker moves.

Like all mechanical devices, leads are subject to wear and tear, which is minimal during everyday movements. But using arm-strengthening machines, rowing, lifting weights, and other repetitive arm movements can cause a lead to bend and relax repeatedly at the same spot. Over time, this can damage the lead. Excessive extension of the arm nearest the pacemaker (such as doing overhead arm presses or certain yoga positions) poses a different problem: it can crush the lead between the collarbone and the first rib.

That said, it’s fine to exercise your upper arms, but don’t overdo it. Ask if a trainer can show you exercises that are suitable for someone with a pacemaker. If you do yoga, stick to gentle classes or chair yoga and tell the instructor you have a pacemaker. In general, moderate-intensity aerobic exercise such as brisk walking or cycling is fine for people with pacemakers. Check with your doctor if you have any concerns about how much and how intensely you can exercise.

As for airport security, be sure to have your pacemaker wallet ID card handy to show the screener. The millimeter wave advanced imaging technology used by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is safe for people with pacemakers; the high-frequency waves hardly penetrate the body. But people with pacemakers should not use walk-through metal detectors, according to the TSA. They will instead receive a pat-down screening.

Until about seven years ago, most pacemakers were not FDA-approved for MRI scans, which are used to diagnose certain diseases, especially those affecting the brain or spinal cord. But since 2000, the FDA has approved newer devices that are designed to be safe for MRI. These “MRI-conditional” devices still need to be checked and monitored before, during, and after the scan, however. The American Heart Association has more information about other devices that may interfere with pacemakers; see

— by Deepak L. Bhatt, M.D., M.P.H.

Below are spiritual recipe for health and wellness: Matthew E. McLaren

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8

 “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” – Mark 11:24

 “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.” – Proverbs 12:25

 “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?” – Luke 12:25

 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11

“If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” – Matthew 7:11

 “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” – Proverbs 17:22

 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” – Philippians 4:6

 “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” – Proverbs 4:23

 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” – James 1:2-3

 “In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” – Proverbs 3:6

 “Commit your actions to the LORD, and your plans will succeed.”- Proverbs 16:3

 “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” Luke 12:24 – Luke 12:24

 “It’s not what goes into your mouth that defiles you; you are defiled by the words that come out of your mouth.” – Matthew 15:11

 “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit.” – Matthew 12:33

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