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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Cardiology Treatment Modalities

Question: Pacemaker pain

 shrtstuf121 - Tue Feb 10, 2004 1:43 pm

I am 30 years old and recently had a pacemaker pocket revision for erosion. I have since had alot of pain in the armpit and left arm. The pacemaker itself is palpable in the armpit. I brought this to the surgeon's attention who told me it would be fine. I have had a second opinion since then where it was determined that it was pressing on the brachial plexus and needed to be moved. One MD said it was out of his scope and the second would not do it out of loyalty to the original MD, whom he trained under. Where do I go from here? I don't know how to even begin trying to find a MD to fix this. Also, can the pressure on the nerves really eventually cause permanent nerve damage in that arm like they have been telling me? Please help...I am in pain and out of options.
 Dr. Yasser Mokhtar - Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:52 pm

User avatar Dear Shorty,

How recent have you had the revision of your pacemaker and what was eroded?

If your pacemaker revision has been very recent, there could some blood still in the area and this blood could be irritating the nerves rather than the nerves being compressed.

If this pain does not improve and you are worried about the brachial plexus nerves (which actually are not in the arm pit but they are present in the neck), you can ask your doctor to be referred to a neurologist (a nerve specialist) who can do a nerve study which will show whether the nerves are compressed or not and if so is there any damage and then if the nerves are compressed and/or on their way to be damaged, i guess this will compelling for your surgeon to revise the pacemaker once more.

If this is not going to be compelling enough, i guess you can go somewhere else for a second opinion.

Thank you very much for using our website and i hope that this information helped.

Yasser Mokhtar, M.D.
 shrtstuf121 - Tue Feb 10, 2004 6:29 pm

I guess I should have been more specific, the nerves that branch from the brachial plexus deep in the armpit that supply nerve activity to the arm is what is affected. I had the procedure done on November 7th 2003. The erosion was the skin on the chest where the pacemaker was beginning to protrude. Thank you for your response.
 Dr. Yasser Mokhtar - Wed Feb 11, 2004 3:27 pm

User avatar Dear Shorty,

Thank you very much for the update.

Why not try the other side of the chest? Why did your surgeon go for the armpit?

i guess it is too late for that question. However, i think, that if the pain continues and gets worse, that you should be seen by a neurologist and have the nerve conduction study done to make sure that the nerves are not getting compressed and damaged.

Thank you very much for using our website and i hope that this information helped.

Yasser Mokhtar, M.D.

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