View Full Version : Pacemakers in the welding environment?

04-08-2009, 07:37 AM
Well the old ticker is not ticking right. After several months trying to control with medication, I have an apointment with the electrical specialist in the heart hospital. Does this mean the electrical welding days are over?

04-08-2009, 04:05 PM

Rookie machinist
04-08-2009, 06:47 PM
Link does not work. I know this has been discussed before and I believe somebody had posted that their doc said it was ok. i would consult your doctors for their opinion. The process and equipment you use may have an impact one way or the other, best to ask your doc to be safe.

04-09-2009, 06:57 AM
In the past you had to avoid welding and microwaves with a pacemaker. Times have changed and now Its not an issue. I would check on the specific model of pacemaker your planning on using with a Dr.

04-09-2009, 08:36 AM
Yes by all means, check with your doctors, any of them that you are going to. As there is medical opinions about everything. Also check the brand and their toll free number, Comes on the card with the recall information they give you to carry and one to keep at the house.
I haven't heard much about what not to do, when the doctors were talking to my mother about hers.
They also have a tech/nurse that does the adjusting and testing of it every six months. The new ones are amazing as to the transferring of information and adjusting them with out an invasive procedures.

You will be restricted as to movements and carry weight for a time. The difference in your health before and after most times will be amazing.

I know that my mothers was like night and day! From there's nothing wrong to wow should have that does sooner!

The only other item is,check and verify the information you get on the web, whether it is forums or med sites. As the Doctor said that some of them are not offering correct or up to date information.

04-09-2009, 09:16 AM
I want one with a "turbo" button.

If they could only hook a similar control to the glands of the body?

04-09-2009, 10:03 AM
I want one for my Brain. I was gonna say something else but that thing// got me into too much trouble just the way it is. Maybe then i can figure out what the heck im doing wrong all the time LOL

Duct Taper
05-09-2009, 01:01 PM
I asked this a while back and I got a pacemaker in August 08. I got rid of all my electric welders, but mostly because it was time to pass them on to my sons instead of any real fears about the effects on the pacemaker. But you DO have to follow some guidelines. They are listed on the Medtronic website but in short you can still use electric welders. You just have to get as far away from the transformer as possible, keep the wires close together and keep the torch as far away from the pacemaker as possible. That was my problem, I couldn't see well enough to weld at that distance. They said that if you are welding and you experience any strange feelings or shortness of breath then you should stop welding for a while. That's all.
I was also concerned about the VFD on my milling machine but that was no problem.

Check the website at: http://www.medtronic.com/your-health/bradycardia/living-with/questions-answers/index.htm

05-10-2009, 03:22 PM
I want one with a "turbo" button.

If they could only hook a similar control to the glands of the body?

Hey now David...this is a family show...

Which 'glands' are you wanting to wire that up to? :-)


05-10-2009, 08:16 PM
On a more serious note, I was wondering if there could be some shielding that could be used to line a welding jacket such that any emanations might be attenuated to protect the wearer? I know that Nurses and doctors who work around X-Ray machines wear lead-shielded jackets. In fact, I had an X-ray of my hip last year and they draped one over me. It was quite heavy, though.

If such an article could stop X-rays, it should be able to stop other things.

Just an idea.

05-11-2009, 10:44 PM
I just got out of hospital after another heart attack, it left me suffering from bradycardia [whatever the spelling was], the solution was yes a pacemaker, when they told me this i admit to a bit of panic as i had already been told and had just read in thier explanation booklet, magnetic fields, NO WAY.
oh **** i thought i work in a steelplant, sevice machines with BIG transformers and do stick and tig welding, i'm screwed, or am i?
asked doctor and engineer from the pacing clinic to drop by my bed, which they did.
the rub was that whilst strong mags >10 gauss wil be a disaster that smaller fields would not, 10 gauss 6" away from the unit will be about 0.somthing in the unit which should be ok [by mouth so no proof]
the manufacturers cannot accept liability for mag field failure so if you ask them about welding they will tell you NO, if they said anything else then they would have to guarantee what they told you and back it up, imagine the claims.... anyway
my new welder is a thyristor affair i think, solid state as opposed to cu transformer, the field is there but much lower that a conventional transformer, fields seem to be ok but dont stand around magnet cranes, distance is your friend, if you were really stuck with welding, long leads and dont drape the cable over your shoulder [lol]
sheilding see Faraday cage,
heart problem+welding+electric shock+age=6' deep hole to lie in it seems
a good choice would be get someone else to do the welding if you can

05-11-2009, 10:49 PM
What about a HF unit on the Tig?


05-12-2009, 07:44 AM
seems the HF unit injects a HF sine wave or square wave into the circuit to allow the arc to form without contact, the unit is an oscillator within the set so sheilded by the case, once again dont put the lead over your shoulder as its an ariel [spelling looks odd!] once ignition there is a voltage slump and current rise and the HF stops, or so i have been told, once again reasearch is difficult as suppliers dont want any liability, once again farm it out if possible, if you have to take care, anything odd stop, heart lock is not funny, i saw a guy in the cardiac unit day before yesterday fall aver backwards like a tree going down, back of head hit floor first, what a thud.
all the best

Duct Taper
05-12-2009, 10:20 AM
The only problem I have experienced since I got my pacemaker was when using a 1/2" Dewalt hammer drill to make a 1" hole through a concrete block wall. I leaned my shoulder into it with the drill on the side closest to the pacemaker and I did get a reaction consisting of shortness of breath and fatigue that lasted for about an hour. I quit and sat down. No long term effects though.

So I would say that any close magnetic field is not adviseable, whether it is from a welder or drill. And I don't think there is any practical way to intercept the magnetic field. X-ray is stopped by lead and lead won't have any affect on magnetic force, that has to be iron based. An iron shield will still let the magnetic force affect items on the other side of the shield.

Like I said earlier, I passed on my TIG and MIG to my sons and only have an oxy-acetylene torch now. Anything it can't weld goes down the block to a pro.

05-16-2009, 12:02 PM
There was an older EE on the rec.crafts.metalworking news group that had a pacemaker installed and wanted to continue welding. He did quite a bit of research and talked to welding manufacturers and laid out the results in posts to the newsgroup. His name is Don Foreman.

A Google Groups search should turn it up. Here's the result of one search string:


05-18-2009, 08:04 PM
A friend's doctor told him "no welding" after the pacemaker installation. So, Bob turned all the welding over to his wife. She does an excellent job, welded all the targets for our Club's Cowboy Action scenarios.

Here's Bob, AKA "Hoss": http://www.scsclub.org/cowboy/Hoss.jpg
Here's me, AKA "Jumpin' Jimmy": http://www.scsclub.org/cowboy/Jumpin%20Jimmy.jpg

Unfortunately, I have no pics of "Ma Hoss", nor of her work.