Study: MP3 Player Headphones May Interfere With Pacemakers
November 10, 2008 3:22 AM
comment(s) - last by
Research indicates the MP3 player headphones, not the player itself, poses a health risk to some owners
If you listen to an MP3 player and have a heart pacemaker, you could be at risk of complications, medical researchers warn.
But unlike previously thought, the MP3 player is not the culprit -- the headphones plugged into the MP3 player pose a risk. Earlier in 2008, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially concluded that MP3 players are safe to use regardless of their location.
Research presented during the American Heart Association conference indicates that some headphones commonly used by MP3 player owners can interfere with pacemakers or implanted defibrillators -- even if they're not being used and are disconnected.
Researchers led by Dr. William Maisel at the Medical Device Safety Institute at Beth Israel Medical Center in Boston
tested eight different models of headphones
and ear buds that were connected to Apple iPod MP3 players. During the study with 60 patients, 30 percent of subjects with defibrillators and 15 percent of subjects with pacemakers suffered interference due to their headphones.
"For patients with pacemakers, exposure to the headphones can force the device to deliver signals to the heart, causing it to beat without regard to the patients' underlying heart rhythm," Dr. Maisel said in a press statement. "Exposure of a defibrillator to the headphones can temporarily deactivate the defibrillator."
A strong magnetic substance inside some popular MP3 headphones mistakenly interrupt a pacemaker's beat or deactivate the defibrillator.
If placed around one inch from a device, there was interference one-fourth of the time -- in 10 patients out of 33 who had defibrillators and four of 27 overall patients with pacemakers. One pacemaker unexpectedly reset itself during the trials.
Sixty patients took part in the study.
Dr. Maisel said people shouldn't "overreact" to the research, but still advised patients with pacemakers or defibrillators to keep headphones at least 3 centimeters away from the implanted devices. Furthermore, headphones should not be placed in a breast pocket or dangle over their chest.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: MP3 headphones?
11/10/2008 3:25:06 PM
Actually no, the crappy ones tend to have smaller drivers, weaker magnets, though I'm ignoring supposely higher-end earbuds which are more often used with MP3 players than any other source.
"Can anyone tell me what MobileMe is supposed to do?... So why the f*** doesn't it do that?" -- Steve Jobs
Creationists are Mad About Google Doodle Depicting Evolution
November 24, 2015, 8:48 PM
DHS and TSA: Whoops, We Missed That 73 Airport Employees May be Terrorists
November 19, 2015, 2:16 PM
Star Wars Spinoff Film "Rogue One", Theme Park Attractions Announced
August 17, 2015, 12:20 PM
SpaceX Falcon 9's Seventh Supply Mission to ISS Ends w/ Fiery Stage 1 Explosion
June 28, 2015, 1:10 PM
Cool Science Video: Glowing Millipede Prowls the Nevada Desert
May 18, 2015, 12:00 PM
Newly Discovered Costa Rican Glass Frog is Kermit's Doppelgänger
April 22, 2015, 11:26 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information