Could a defibrillator cause my heart to race?

1 answer | Last updated: Nov 09, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

I have a defibrillator. Sometimes I get a rapid heart beat which makes it feel like my heart is failing. Should I be concerned?

Expert Answers

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

Rapid heart beats have many causes, so I wouldn't worry too much at this point.  Have they checked your device recently?  Is it due to be checked soon?  If you do not have an appointment soon with your cardiologist, I would call the office and tell them about your symptoms.  If they are concerned, they can easily schedule an appointment to check your device to see what your heart is doing when you feel it racing.  It may not be a problem, but I would let them know just to be sure.