iPods can make pacemakers malfunction

iPods can cause cardiac implantable pacemakers to malfunction by interfering with the electromagnetic equipment monitoring the heart, according to a study presented by a 17-year-old high school student to a meeting of heart specialists on Thursday.

The study tested the effect of the portable music devices on 100 patients, whose mean age was 77, outfitted with pacemakers. Electrical interference was detected half of the time when the iPod was held just 2 inches from the patient's chest for 5 to 10 seconds.

In some cases, the iPods caused interference when held 18 inches from the chest. Interfering with the telemetry equipment caused the device to misread the heart's pacing and in one case caused the pacemaker to stop functioning altogether.

The study was held at the Thoracic and Cardiovascular Institute at Michigan State University. The results were presented at the Heart Rhythm Society annual meeting in Denver.

The study did not examine any portable music devices other than iPods.

News source: Reuters

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10 Comments

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as much as I hate iPods I have to say that this was a stupid test because all electronic devices interfere with other electronic devices to a certain degree, Apple may be evil but I don't think they want to kill anyone.

black_death said,
as much as I hate iPods I have to say that this was a stupid test because all electronic devices interfere with other electronic devices to a certain degree, Apple may be evil but I don't think they want to kill anyone.

Just like how no microwave manufacturer wants to kill anyone. The point is AWARENESS. Don't need any deaths over this, that's the last thing Apple needs.

On a side note, you would think we could have discovered a fix for these pacemaker issues by now.

Primetime2006 said,

Just like how no microwave manufacturer wants to kill anyone. The point is AWARENESS. Don't need any deaths over this, that's the last thing Apple needs.

On a side note, you would think we could have discovered a fix for these pacemaker issues by now.

the thing is its not just the pacemaker were dealing with, its the person that the pacemaker is inside of, what kinds of protection against electromagnetic interference will cause what side effects for the person etc etc etc....

i hope nobody died during this experiment

holy cr*p

use some frikkin common sense.
if you have a pacemaker, don't use an mp3 player or anything that could interfere with the pacemaker.

don't stand close to a microwave oven, don't stand next to an AM or FM transmitter.

A lot of electrical equipment (cell phones) interfere with pacemakers/medical electronics. It's no surprise that the iPod interferes as well.

maybe.. but then it would be a more complete study if he tried it with all mp3 players (or at least a selection)

better than people dying because they think brand y is safer...