Apple Warns iPhones Can Interfere with Pacemakers, Other Medical Devices

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Tech giant Apple is warning iPhone users to keep their device is 6 inches away from their heart if they have a pacemaker as their smartphone could interfere with it, along with other medical devices.

The Verge reports that following the launch of Apple’s MagSafe-enabled iPhone 12 lineup, Apple has a new safety warning — avoid holding the phone near your heart if you have a pacemaker as there is a possibility that the smartphone could interfere with medical devices.

MacRumors recently noticed an update to Apple’s support documents in which the company advises that iPhones should be kept at least six inches away from a user’s pacemaker or implanted defibrillator during normal use and as much as a foot away if the device is currently using its wireless charging technology.

The advice isn’t just specific to MagSafe phones as Apple states that additional magnets shouldn’t make the phones more likely to turn off implanted medical devices than any other phone. Medtronic, the manufacturer of many medical devices released a statement downplaying the risk, saying:

Medtronic has analyzed iPhone technology and found that it presents no increased risk of interference with Medtronic implantable cardiac rhythm devices, such as pacemakers, implantable defibrillators (ICDs), and cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillators (CRT-Ds), when used according to labeling.

The statements from Apple and Medtronic come shortly after a recent study in which a researcher was able to deactivate a patient’s implanted defibrillator by holding an iPhone 12 directly to the medical device. The study was only carried out on one person, however, and didn’t show if the same results would have occurred with a non-Magsafe device.

Medical devices being deactivated by magnets is not a new phenomenon, many such devices are actually designed to be disabled when a magnet is held over them. Apple’s documentation advises users to “consult with your physician and your device manufacturer for specific guidelines.”

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address lucasnolan@protonmail.com

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