Abstract 287: Hybrid Cars and Electromagnetic Fields: Implications for Persons With Cardiac Devices
Introduction: Electromagnetic interference with implantable cardioverter defibrillators can lead to temporary inhibition of device therapy or to inappropriate delivery of anti-tachycardia pacing and shocks. The incidence of interactions between electronic devices and the current generation of implantable cardioverter defibrillators is not well known. There is no data specifically related to electromagnetic fields in the hybrid car or with the “smart key” system and how they might affect implantable cardiac devices. The objective of the study is to identify whether the electromagnetic field (EMF)created in hybrid vehicles causes interference with implantable cardioverter defibrillators.
Methods: The EMF was measured using a gauss meter in various locations in several hybrid vehicles during different driving scenarios. The vehicles tested included a 2007 Toyota Prius, a 2007 Lexus SUV Hybrid, and a 2009 Altima Hybrid. A single chamber defibrillator from three different companies (St Jude, Medtronic, and Boston Scientific) was then connected to a modified pace/sense/defibrillation lead which was placed in various positions in the car and then interrogated. A smart key was used to open and start the car and the Gauss meter was used to measure the EMF during this interaction.
Results: The highest level of electromagnetic field strength in any of the hybrid vehicles during typical driving situations was noted to be 0.3 Gauss. The cardiac device interrogation of all three devices revealed that all devices paced normally and there were no problems related to sensing electromagnetic interference. Interestingly, during testing with the smart key, the highest level of EMF was noted from vehicle interaction with the smart key. When the gauss meter was placed near the key holder in the dashboard area, the highest reading was 5 milligaus even before starting the car.
Conclusions: Based on this limited data, the electromagnetic field created in hybrid vehicles should not interfere with the function of an implantable cardioverter defibrillator. The highest electromagnetic field readings were not related to the hybrid car itself in routine driving situations but were observes during the smart key and hybrid vehicle interaction.
- © 2010 by American Heart Association, Inc.