An attempt was made in Great Britain to obtain information on whether or not patients with implanted cardiac pacemakers should be allowed to drive a motor vehicle. A postal questionnaire was sent to 130 patients asking if they had a current license, were still driving, or had an accident, since pacemaker implementation. They were also asked if they answered question 7 (b) and (f) on the Driver License application, fainting, and disease or disability likely to cause danger to the public. Inquiries were also sent to British traffic authorities and 12 other countries. Of 117 replies, 56 had held licenses and 39 continue to drive. Of these 39 only one reported an accident--skidding under wet conditions on a motor cycle. The pacemaker continued to function. All patients answered "No" to 7 (b) and (f), many adding comments that they felt completely safe about driving. There is confusion in all countries by both medical and traffic authorities as to whether or not pacemaker patients should drive. There has been no report of an accident due to pacemaker failure. In all cases where information is available, pacemaker patients were allowed driving licenses for private vehicles (but not for heavy duty or public service vehicles), provided support was available from the cardiologist or physician. (MW)

  • Corporate Authors:

    British Medical Association

    BMA House, Tavistock Square
    London WC1H 9JR,   United Kingdom 
  • Authors:
    • Sowton, E
  • Publication Date: 1972

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: p. 977-980
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00127297
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Safety Council Safety Research Info Serv
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 21 1976 12:00AM