Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Can I travel with my pacemaker implant?"
I am 50 and worry about dealing with airport security. Can I show a doctor's note at the airport?
You will have no trouble traveling with your pacemaker. Pacemakers are very common in today's world, and airport security is very used to dealing with this issue. Since it is made of metal, your pacemaker device will likely set off the metal detector at airports and anywhere else that has security. You will be given a card which states that you have a pacemaker, where it was placed, and what model it is. Airport security will take a look at the card, and most likely will uses a wand type metal detector over your body instead of having you walk through the regular detector. The only other people that should always know that you have a pacemaker are health care professionals. If you go to the emergency room for an injury or other problem, you must tell the doctor you have a pacemaker. Having one usually means that you cannot have an MRI, or be anywhere near an MRI machine. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with the electrophysiology cardiologist that placed you pacemaker. He or she can review your pacemaker card and discuss all the precautions you must take now that you have this device. The list will be short, but will usually involve not having an MRI, and avoiding any magnets or any other strong electrical devices withing a short proximity to the pacemaker.
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