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Defibrillators device support

Medical and dental procedures

Peace of mind for your procedures

Some medical and dental procedures may damage or affect your implantable defibrillator (ICD and S-ICD) device. Learn about these procedures below and be sure to tell your dentist and physicians that you have an implanted device so they may take necessary precautions.

Doctor speaking with a patient in the doctor’s office

Procedures that may affect your device

The following medical and dental procedures can affect your implanted device and/or injure you. If you must have any of these procedures, be sure to talk with your heart specialist and the doctor performing the procedure about what can be done to protect you and your device.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

An MRI is a diagnostic test that uses a powerful magnet and radio waves to produce images of the human body. You may be able to have an MRI scan if you have a Boston Scientific ImageReady MR Conditional ICD or S-ICD System. Talk to your physician about the capabilities of your particular device and leads.

If your system is not eligible to be scanned or if the required conditions are not met, an MRI scan can severely damage your implanted device or injure you and should not be performed. Your doctor must always confirm that both you and your implanted device are eligible and ready for an MRI in order to undergo this procedure.

Hospitals keep MRI equipment in rooms marked with signs that indicate magnets are inside. Do not go inside these rooms unless your physician has confirmed that you meet the requirements for an MRI scan.


Diathermy should not be performed as it uses an electrical field to apply heat to tissues in the body and could damage your device or injure you.


Electrocautery is used during surgical procedures to stop vessels from bleeding. Speak to your doctor before undergoing this procedure.

Electrolysis and Thermolysis

These dermatology or hair removal procedures pass electrical currents into the skin. Talk with your heart doctor before having either of these treatments.

External defibrillation

Typically used in medical emergencies, this procedure uses external equipment to deliver an electrical shock to your heart to restore a rapid and irregular heart rate to a normal rhythm. External defibrillation can affect your S-ICD or ICD device, but can still be performed if necessary. Be sure to contact your physician as soon as possible if you receive external defibrillation to verify that your device is functioning properly.


Used to break up stones in the urinary tract, such as kidney stones, lithotripsy can damage your S-ICD or ICD device if certain precautions are not taken. 

Therapeutic radiation treatment for cancer

This procedure for cancer can affect your device and will require special precautions. If you need radiation treatment, talk with your heart doctor and the doctor performing the procedure.

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) Unit

This device prescribed by physicians or chiropractors to control chronic pain can affect your device.

Procedures that will not affect your CRT-D or CRT-P

Most medical and dental procedures will not affect your CRT device. Some examples include:

  • Dental drills and cleaning equipment
  • Diagnostic X-rays
  • Diagnostic ultrasound procedures
  • Mammograms

Note: Mammograms will not interfere with your device. However, your device could be damaged if it gets compressed in the mammogram machine. Make sure the doctor or technician knows you have an implanted device.

  • EKG machines
  • CT scans

Talk to your doctor

If you need medical or dental treatment, tell your dentist or doctor you have an S-ICD or ICD device and show them your Medical Device ID Card. Your care team can contact your heart specialist and work together to find a treatment that works best for you and your device.

We’re here to help

Our patient services team is here to support you throughout your journey.

Important Safety Information

Cardiac resynchronization therapy pacemakers (CRT-P) and defibrillators (CRT-D) are designed to treat heart failure patients who may or may not have symptoms or who may have symptoms despite the best available drug therapy. They are also designed to help your heart pump more effectively and meet your body’s need for blood flow.  These devices are sensitive to strong electromagnetic interference (EMI) and can be affected by certain sources of electric or magnetic fields. With all medical procedures there are risks associated.  In regard to an implanted ICD, the risks include but are not limited to inappropriate shock, lead moves out of place, loss of stimulation capability, allergic reaction, fluid underneath the skin, and infection.  In rare cases device failure or death can occur.  Be sure to talk with your doctor so that you thoroughly understand all of the risks and benefits associated with the implantation of this system.  To obtain a copy of the device Patient Handbook for more detailed device safety information, go to,  or you can request a copy by calling 1-866-484-3268 or writing to Boston Scientific, 4100 Hamline Ave. N., St. Paul, MN  55112. 

Device Quality and Reliability

It is Boston Scientific’s intent to provide implantable devices of high quality and reliability. However, these devices may exhibit malfunctions that may result in lost or compromised ability to deliver therapy. Refer to Boston Scientific’s CRM product performance report on for more information about device performance, including the types and rates of malfunctions that these devices have experienced historically. While historical data may not be predictive of future device performance, such data can provide important context for understanding the overall reliability of these types of products. Also, it is important that you talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits associated with the implantation of a device.

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