Pacemaker and Implantable Defibrillator (PPM/AICD)

A pacemaker is recommended to patients with abnormally slow heartbeat that result in black out.

It is a small electronic device, slightly larger than an USB stick. It is placed under the skin in your chest to help control your heartbeat. Pacemaker is used to help your heart beat more regularly if you have an irregular heartbeat, particularly a slow one. Implanting a pacemaker in your chest requires a small incision to your skin and inserting one to two leads (think electrical cable) to connect it to your heart.

Implantable Cardiac Defibrillator (ICD)

An implantable defibrillator is recommended to patients prone to dangerous and fast heart rhythm that requires immediate defibrillation (electric shock) to restore normal rhythm.The ICD is the size of a large matchbox and like pacemaker is placed in the chest under the skin. The procedure is fairly similar to a pacemaker insertion.


  1. How long will the battery last?
    • The pacemaker battery typically last 8 to 10 years and the ICD around 6 years depending on usage.  Replacing the battery is a relatively straightforward procedure that takes less than half an hour.
  1. Am I allowed to have MRI if I have a pacemaker?
    • Modern pacemaker and ICD are MRI compatible.
  1. Can I travel overseas and what happen during the security scan at the airport?
    • Millions of people with implanted devices travel every year. You will be given a device implantation card so that you can show the airport security officer at the immigration.


Pacemaker and Implantable Defibrillator (PPM/AICD)

Heart Treatments

Our Cardiologist

Dr. Paul Ong

Senior Consultant Cardiologist

BA (Cambridge)
MB BChir (Cambridge)
MA (Cambridge)
CCST Cardiology (UK)
FRCP (London)
FESC (Europe)