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Hospital  >  Care Programs  >  Schulich Heart Program  >  Patients and visitors  >  Care of your cardiac implantable electronic device

Care of your cardiac implantable electronic device

Illustration of a cardiac device and patient

Cardiac Device Incision

Step 1: Wash hands with soap and water before and after touching incision

Step 2: Remove dressing 3 days after procedure. Shower

Step 3: Examine daily after shower. Pat dry

Step 4: Remove steri strips if they have not fallen off after 7 - 10 days. Leave open to air

How can I help healing?

  • Follow a healthy diet and stop smoking
  • Restrict arm movement on side of incision for 4 - 6 weeks if you have received a new lead
  • Keep your hands off the incision as much as possible
  • Follow the instructions you have been given for exercise and activity
  • Persons living with diabetes are advised to ensure adequate control of your blood sugar 

Tips for dealing with discomfort

  • Take medications as needed
  • Pain should decrease every day
  • Itching, tightness or numbness along your incisions is normal

Tips for Stitches

  • Most wounds do no require the removal of stitches as they will dissolve on their own

Tips for Steri Strips

  • Small strips of non-allergic tape are put across the wound to hold the edges together. They will fall off on their own or gently remove after 7 -10 days 

Do not use any lotions or ointments over the incision

Call your clinic (416-480-4471) if:

  • Increased drainage, swelling or oozing from incision
  • Opening of the incision line
  • Increasing pain and redness around the incision
  • Increasing warmth along the incision line
  • Bleeding that does not stop with pressure
  • Increasing body temperature greater than 101℉ or 38℃