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Use of the Nintendo Wii & ICDs

Just wondering if anyone 'in the know' can shed some light on the use of the Wii by person with implants such as pacemakers etc. I am working with a patient at the moment who has been told by his cardiologist to not use the Wii due to him having a implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). There doesn't seem to be any 'research' into the area, just speculation and word of mouth from peoples consultants.

My understanding is that the Wii does emit radio frequencies from both the WiiMote and balance board, in the form of Bluetooth, so surely any risk cannot be any more significant than the use of mobiles phones and other Bluetooth technologies?! Reports I have found suggest Bluetooth is safe - so what is it about the Wii that makes it contraindicated?

Thanks for any information or advice
2 Responses
1495448 tn?1326842830
You're right, there has not been rigorous testing of the Wii with ICDs.  The ICD manufacturing company can likely give you the best information on that specific model.  If the patient received the ICD very recently (less than 8 weeks), there is a valid concern that swinging a Wii controller around could dislodge the ICD leads and cause damage.  If the ICD is older however, this is less of a concern.  
It is unlikely that the electromagnetic interference from a Wii system would interfere with the ICD, so using a Wii should be fine.  It is best to be in continued discussions with the patient's doctor as new evidence surfaces regarding ICDs and Wii.
Best of luck.
967168 tn?1477584489
I'm really interested in this topic.  

I had a PM/ICD implanted August 2009 due to Polymorphic VT - (no cause found yet) and I've done my Wii and PS3 and haven't noticed anything with mine - but I do stay 5-7ft away from it at all times.

What I found interesting is, the conveyor belt systems/registers at Target affect me and make my HR race but no other store has this effect.  
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