New iPad 5 and mini 2 not ideal for heart patients

If you are considering purchasing the new iPad mini 2 and iPad 5 when they arrive this year, then it might not be recommended if you are a heart patient that has a defibrillator. The issue is one that might be obvious to some people, especially considering the new iPads will likely have magnets just like the current iPads.

In a recent study Gianna Chien has found that the Apple iPad 2 can in some cases be interfering with life-saving heart devices and this is down to the magnets inside the tablet. In an informative article on Bloomberg they highlight research done by 14 year old Gianna Chien concerning these products that have magnets, informing users that implanted defibrillators can be affected.

According to the report, those falling asleep with the iPad on their chest can end up turning off their heart device and she feels that people should be aware of the problems this cause. With defibrillators a safety precaution has been put in place so that the design can be turned off by magnets and a device such as the iPad 2 uses around 30 just to hold the cover in place.

It seems the magnets are not problematic when the iPad is used away from the body, but if it rests on the chest it can be harmful to the user.

While Apple are still yet to comment on these findings its online product guide does state that patients with pacemakers that use their product should keep it at least six inches away from that part of the body, although they also mention precautions for all users about radio frequency interference.

Tests carried out on 26 volunteers with defibrillators found this magnet mode was triggered in 30% of the patients letting the iPad reside on their chest, although it didn’t interfere with a loop-recorder or pacemakers that were also studied.

Walter Chien, Giannas father is a cardiac electrophysiologist and helped her with this study, although Medtronic Inc. who are the top manufacturer of defibrillators have not found any risks concerning their products and the iPad 2, but they do inform patients not to rest anything with magnet around an area where devices have been implanted.

Reports like this help raise awareness and those with internal devices that could be affected should consider this latest study, especially when patients are feeling sleepy enough that their iPad may end up resting on their chests. Has this report opened your eyes to the potential dangers of devices with magnets?

  • kennysondys

    Also people with a shunt installed to reduce the presure on the brain should be aware. The shunts drain flows are set with magnets and can cause an increase, decrease or no flow at all. This can cause presure on the brain resulting in injury or death if not caught in time.