Unintentional magnet reversion of an implanted cardiac defibrillator by an electronic cigarette

Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are nicotine delivery systems initially thought be a safer alternative to cigarette smoking as well as useful adjuncts for smoking cessation. More recently, attention has been directed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at serious pulmonary complications from e-cigarette use, raising important public health concerns. This has been echoed in the scientific literature by demands for stricter regulations for commercialization of these products. Cigarette smoking is a well-established risk factor for cardiovascular events and a sizeable fraction of patients with implanted cardiac devices are active smokers. Here, we report the first case of unintended temporary magnetic reversion of an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) by an e-cigarette system.
Implantable pulse generators have the potential to interact with many commonly used electronic devices. This case report illustrates a repetitive magnet interaction between an ICD and an electronic cigarette. It is incumbent on electrophysiologic practitioners to be aware of such device-device interactions to avoid potential negative outcomes in patients. While no serious injury was observed as a consequence of the magnet reversion and suspension of ICD therapies in this particular case, there is potential for unintentional temporary programming and arrhythmic complications when an electronic cigarette is placed in close proximity to an ICD or pacemaker.
Shea JB, Aquilar M, Sauer WH, Tedrow UHeartRhythmCaseReports, March 2020, Vol. 6, Issue 3, 121-123
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