Journal of Shanghai Jiao Tong University ›› 2022, Vol. 56 ›› Issue (11): 1518-1531.doi: 10.16183/j.cnki.jsjtu.2021.326

• Biomedical Engineering • Previous Articles     Next Articles

“Window Effect” and Protective Measures of Exogenous Pulsed Electromagnetic Field on Implantable Cardiac Pacemaker

LU Wu1, DING Ranran1, ZHAO Wenbin1, HUANG Dong2(), WANG Zheming1   

  1. 1. College of Electrical Power Engineering, Shanghai University of Electric Power, Shanghai 200090, China
    2. Division of Cardiology, Shanghai Sixth People’s Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200233, China
  • Received:2021-08-30 Online:2022-11-28 Published:2022-12-02
  • Contact: HUANG Dong


The electromagnetic interference (EMI) from pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) on pacemakers is unignorable in modern power grids and healthcare environments, but there is limited study on the interaction mechanisms and protective measures. In this paper, an in-vitro human chest model for pacemaker implantation is made by using pork tissues immersed in 0.9% sodium chloride solution. The effect of PEMFs generated by the switching actions of common electrical equipment and low-frequency medical equipment on pacemakers is simulated by using fast-front current sources. The pulse forming line theory is employed for analyzing the waveform compression of PEMFs in human thoracic cavity. Further, the parameterized bio-electromagnetic transient model of pacemaker in combination with biological tissues is established in finite element software. The results show that pacemaker malfunctions including pacing inhibition and P pulmonale occur under PEMF. The “Window effect” in subcutaneous pouch under PEMF is found by changing the winding of pacemaker leads in the pouch. Based on the research finding, a protective strategy by using composite materials to shield the window area is proposed. The theoretical feasibility of this protective measure is confirmed by simulation, where the intensity of pacemaker EMI could be reduced by 80 dB when the composite materials shielding is used. Finally, a safe distance is developed for pacemaker wearers in electrical and medical environments.

Key words: pacemaker, electromagnetic interference (EMI), pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF), effect of strong electromagnetic field, electromagnetic interaction window

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