Pacemaker Dangers At Department Stores

June 13, 2016
Danger Lurks at Store Entrances

People with an artificial pacemaker are warned to stay away from electromagnetic generating machines, which can cause the pacemaker to not work properly. Store anti-theft systems (also called electronic article surveillance or EAS), which are placed hear the entrances of many stores can cause the pacemaker to malfunction and deliver inappropriate shocks.  While many the monolith-looking anti-theft systems are easy to see, even when covered by advertising sleeves, some stores place the electronics in the floor with no visible evidence of their presence. The American heart Association recommends those with pacemakers be aware of the anti-theft systems at the entrances of stores and to not linger near the entrance longer than necessary. They also recommend you not lean against the anti-theft pedestals either and to be aware many are now hidden under advertising sleeves. Also included in the at-risk category are headphones and earbuds.  Although cellphones and MP3 players are safe, the magnets in headphones and earbuds can disrupt pacemakers.  They recommend keeping them at least an inch and a half away from the pacemaker and not to store them in close proximity (like in shirt pocket or dangling from your neck).

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