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Hiking with a defibrillator
Hi, I hope somebody can help me with this question, as I can't seem to get a straight answer from the doctor. My husband has had an internal cardiac defibrillator for a year now, without any problems at all. We are planning a 7-day hiking holiday, where he would be carrying a backpack weighing about 10kg. The backpack strap would be rubbing right over the defibrillator site and the doctor does not think this is a good idea. Has anybody heard of, or know of, any type of custom made backpack, which would avoid this strap rubbing? Or perhaps some sort of gadget that could be adapted to the strap, to take the weight off the defibrillator site. Any suggestions very much appreciated!
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I hike also and have an ICD. There are several one shouldered back packs on the market. I use one which goes over my right shoulder. I find it just as comfortable as the double strap. Any good sports store should have them. I am not sure about the weight restrictions as I only do day hiking.
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I added foam padding to the strap of a backpack that left a free space right where the strap would contact the ICD area.  My pack was about 50 pounds.  It worked fine.  You have to make sure the extra padding is long enough before and after the gap to spread the weight of your pack out over a distance.  You can get various types of foam at upholstery supply companies along with the glue that is used to adhere it to just about anything.  I did alter mine alittle after using it for several hours.  I rounded the edge of the foam so it would dig in.  Worked very nice after that.
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Hi, thanks very much for your comments; that sounds like a great idea, I will try it.
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Thank you very much for taking the time to answer my question. I will check out the sports shops, though I fear with a 10-kg weight, a one-shouldered pack might not be enough support and he may end up with a bad back!! Though perhaps there is a system now to compensate for this.
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