Smartphones may set off defibrillators and pacemakers

PATIENTS with a defibrillator or pacemaker should not keep a smartphone in their chest pocket, researchers say.

A study of 300 patients with a cardiac device found that when a smartphone was placed over it, one patient’s implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) began oversensing.

The lead author of the study, presented at a European Society of Cardiology meeting last week, said that pacemakers may mistake smartphone interference for cardiac signals, leading to pacing pauses and possible syncope. ICDs may