Advice on Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator ( ICD )

Discussion in 'Interference Problems' started by M0JAV, Jun 20, 2014.

  1. M0JAV

    M0JAV Moderator

    One of our members has recently been told that he could benefit from the above device.
    Unfortunately even the professionals do not seem keen to give advice as to the immunity
    to Amateur Radio, saying 'we have never come across it'.
    I find this very hard to believe and would welcome any advice from the committee or
    members of the society which would help me to make a decision.
    Many thanks in advance.
    Name and call sign supplied

    If you have advice post it here and I will ensure it gets back to the author.
  2. Peter Chadwick

    Peter Chadwick New Member

    I've only just seen your request. Basically, active medical implants have to meet:

    Council Directive 90/385/EEC of 20 June 1990 "On the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to active implantable medical devices (AIMD Directive)."

    EMC requirements that are required to meet AIMD Directive are given in EN 60601-1-2: these require immunity to 10V/m which also include some low frequency modulations. Tests may take into account body loss: as that is around 30 - 40dB at 400 MHz, you can see why!

    Now I'm retired, I don't have access to the EN: it could be worthwhile the RGSB purchasing the relevant standards. I was told that there were moves afoot at ISO to raise the level to 30V/m and some manufacturers already do test to that level. Unfortunately, the major manufacturers of pacemakers and defibrillators are now all US based, and thus are very wary of making a statement for legal reasons.

    Having said this, anecdotal comments from the US suggest that provided reasonable care is taken to limit the field strength, people have not had trouble. That is not the case where there is power electronics if the LF magnetic fields are very strong e.g. around welding cables, and again, there have been anecdotal comments suggesting that the magnetic field pulses from thyristor controlled Belgian railway trains have given trouble - they have a 16-2/3Hz supply for at least part of their network.

    For the last 7 years before retirement, I was Chairman of the ETSI ERM TG_30 "Wireless Medical Applications", and was heavily involved with the standards production as well as the design of transceivers for implantable applications: I was a member of ERM_TG30 for 11 years and Vice Chairman for 3 prior to becoming Chairman.

    You can contact me directly at g8on[AT] making the usual substitution for [AT]

    vy 73

    Peter E. Chadwick G3RZP
  3. Ken G3SDW

    Ken G3SDW Moderator

    Peter, in June this year i contacted this member with all the info about his request, this was sent to me by the manufactures of the device that was offered to him, which satisfied his worry.

    Thanks for contacting the forum about this problem, all is sorted now.

  4. G4POP

    G4POP New Member

    Hi Ken,
    I was just fitted with a Medtronics pacemaker (icd) on Monday

    My surgeon said there would not be a problem with amateur radio but to be sure I phoned Medtronics but unfortunately the foreign gentleman in customer support interpreted our hobby as being an electric hammer operator and nothing would persuade him otherwise OMG!

    Co you continue to operate ok with your pacemaker? I only use 100 watts into a Doublet but need reassurance that it won't affect the ICT?

    73 Terry
  5. Ken G3SDW

    Ken G3SDW Moderator

    Hi Terry, you have the same one as me except mine is 2012 vintage and i cannot have any MRI scans if i need one, after 2014 then they are compatible with MRI, so if at any time you need one you will be OK.

    I think if you look on there web site and dig a bit you will find reference to operating radio transmitters, the technician who looked after me when i had my one fitted down loaded it for me so i know that it is there.

    Yes i can operate 100%, dont forget that it is not the transmitter that radiates but the antenna and that will not be near you, i think the web page give distances, only thing to remember and it may not apply to you is that never carry your mobile phone in your upper pocket, left hand side as the update location every few minutes, so just remember that tip.

    You will be fine as i am a radio amateur lol
  6. Ken G3SDW

    Ken G3SDW Moderator

  7. G4POP

    G4POP New Member

    Hi Ken,

    That's great and I did find the documentation but it's a bit out of date.

    My main concern was the 450 ohm feeder which assuming it's balanced but you never know! However it is about 9 ft away on the other side of a cavity wall so should be fine.

    It's most reasurring to speak to another amateur in the same situation so thanks again.

    Best 73 Terry
  8. Ken G3SDW

    Ken G3SDW Moderator

    My pleasure Terry, always here to help at all times.

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