should a pacemaker be a visible lump ... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation
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should a pacemaker be a visible lump under my collar bone?


I had a pacemaker fitted on June 28th 2019. A week later most of the swelling has gone but the area around the pacemaker is a very visible lump below my collar bone. Is this normal or will the swelling reduce further? I'd been led to believe that the pacemaker would hardly be visible at all. Thank you from a first time poster.

19 Replies

My husbands pacemaker is a very obvious big lump, can definitely see the outline of the device.

My husband has an ICD and that is very visible.

Absolutely normal. Mine is a little bit bigger than a large matchbox. The scar healed well, but it still took about a year before I was confidently sleeping on that side.

Mine is very visible. I’ve got a healthy BMI, so little ‘padding’. It’s a small price to pay for having a normal rate and rhythm. If someone wants to criticise my body I suppose there are easier attributes to target 😊

bee2 in reply to IanMK

Can I ask what your heart rate was prior to pace maker?

IanMK in reply to bee2

Hi bee2

My previous heart rate isn't relevant - I had a pace and ablate to tackle a tachycardia (2 months ago). My present resting rate is around 53 but I'm still on Bisoprolol and Ramipril.

bee2 in reply to IanMK

Ah ok, good that it has helped you feel normal. My heart rate is the opposite and have Sinus Bradycardia but also Sinus Tachycardia mentioned... normal sounds good 😉

Mine is visible too. I had mine fitted 18 months ago and it took a few months for it to settle in and it’s not as prominent as it was, but still definitely visible.


Mine is a visible lump a year after being fitted and looks much better than it did during the first six months. My Dad’s pacemakers were all visible too. There are smaller pacemakers but I am proud of my significantly visible box shape survival machine!

I had my ICD implanted on Tuesday and have noticed how visible it is. I assume that the muscle will gradually shape around it over time

It’s not even a fortnight since your procedure, so I would try and be patient and wait a little longer, mine sticks out a bit and sometimes catches but my father in laws is very flat and you can’t see his at all but he’s had his in for over ten years.

I had a CRT-D on 20th May very visible more than I thought it would be, I look at it as a trophy from a battle my doctors and I won, I think of my Grandfather who wouldn’t of died at the age of 51 if this wonderful technology was around years ago.

There is now one that is inserted directly into the heart. Not sure how commonly they are used, They were being trialled at some UK hospitals about three years ago.

My friend has a pacemaker and a defib inserted, it's not too noticeable it's been in for about 3 months but it is there to save her life so she's happy to put up with it. She was at death's door before the consultant decided on this as she's not fit for a major heart operation. I'm sure you will get used to it and wear it as a badge of honour xxxx

My husband had his PM procedure in September and you definitely see the shape of the tiny computer under his clavicle bone. At least the doctor will know where it is when he needs the batteries changed.

Your doc will check you every so often to determine the battery life. As of June the hubby has 7 years left of battery life. I’m sure by then he will be ready for a tune up and perhaps who knows what research will have on the market by then.

We hear about all the research and never appreciate until we find it’s a life saver.

Hats off to all the men and women in science who have dedicated themselves in the field of research.

I`m afraid it will always be visible.I wear mine like a badge of honour!I`ve had it for 12 years now and it has improved the quality of my life immensely.

Had mine fitted November 2018, yes it's visible, but I also have an open heart surgery scar, and I'm really not bothered by any of them x

As cowparsley says, I wear mine like a badge of honour X

I have been known to ask 'people' if they would like to feel my box !

Thank you for all these replies. It's great to hear such positive attitudes.

I think it all depends on the person's physiology. I've had two devices implanted so far, and neither was/is very noticeable, but I think over time they settle in more (think gravity effects).

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