Any Firefighters with ICD's?

Hi there! I'm new to this group. My husband has ARVD and has his ICD since 2006... At 25 years old. It has given him therapy only once (thankfully it worked ... Although once was enough to give him PTSD), back in 2010, and he had Open heart due to complications excising a faulty lead later that year.
He's looking to change careers right now, and has always wanted to be a firefighter... Any firefighters with ICD's out there? Anyone become one Post-implant?
Thanks so much :)

Edited August 2, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Report post

13 replies. Join the discussion

Hi,

I have known of at least a dozen firefighters on this site in the past 3 years. They all have had ICDs. They have also
had their jobs changed, or had to leave their careers.
I am not a firefighter and don't have an ICD. I just want you to know that they are around! Whether they are active
on this site, I don't know. Don't give up to soon.

Bob

Report post

My husband is a firefighter. He was forced to retire because he made the decision to have an ICD implanted. Your husband can not become a firefighter. It is against the IAFF 1582, which most departments use as standards.

Report post

Well as far as being a firefighter with an ICD, it is against the NFPA guidelines HOWEVER; they are that....just guidelines. Now the odds of being hired with that medical condition, the doctor for the physical would have to put him through. Impossible, no. Highly unlikely, Yes. I have had a ICD for 5 years and working a administrative job. I am looking for correspondence from a FF in Texas that has an ICD and working full duty, hence me bumping into this. I haven't been on here for quite sometime.

Hope this helps!

Report post

What about police officers, Do they still work with ICD in Texas

Report post

I've had an ICD for nearly 2 years and I now volunteer at a small department in southern California. I was with a larger volunteer organization that asked me to resign when I told them about my ICD. There are many things that I can't do because of my medication (beta-blocker) but there are still many things that I can do. I don't go into structure fires because of obvious reasons, but I can change out air bottles, set up lighting, comfort homeowners and help with medical care. They also run an ambulance service so I assist the medic with patients since I'm still an EMT. I honestly don't know of any fire fighters who are still out in the field that have ICD's or pacemakers.

Ruth

Report post

I'm a volunteer firefighter in a very busy department. I have had a pacemaker for the past 3 years and have remained an Interior Firefighter with no restrictions.

My cardiologist is aware of NFPA 1582, but does not agree with it. He signs off on my medical clearance every year.

I am now faced with the prospect of having an ICD implanted. I haven't asked him about my firefighting status with that device. I would suspect that it will include restrictions. Right now that is the least of my concerns.

Report post

I have ARVD, I have been shocked, and I was very physically active and robust. I have different sentiments between a firefighter who later develops ARVD and one with ARVD who later wants to become a firefighter. Those who later develop ARVD or other limiting conditions can move on to desk jobs in a fire department and not be a firefighter per se but stay in their industry.

Being a firefighter means that he, his co-workers and most prominently, those being saved, are in harm's way under the most demanding physical and mental stresses. Because of our disease, we are different and less physically capable. I wish it were not true. We would put everyone at potential risk. This condition is inconsistent with the goal of being a firefighter I submit.

Report post

My recommendation would be for him to check with his cardiologist, only he knows his condition and the risk involved.
Personally I would pursue a different courier, although he may have no problems in the short run but may be heart broken later on in live when his implant does become an issue. As he has experienced PTSD he knows that this is not something he wants to deal with in addition when he's under stress during a call.

Best wishes!

Report post

Hello, I am a 31 year old male in great shape, but I also have an ICD. I got it becase my wife thought it would be a good fall back plan incase something ever happend, she implants ICD's and Pacemaker in people daily. My doctor found a small pocket of fat on my heart he told us that I would probly never use it and its 50/50 if I need it at all....so to play it safe we decided to get one and little did I know it would play a role in me getting the job i ALLWAYS WANTED. Now Im far in the process and It looks like I can possibly get the job depending on my Medical evaluation next Monday. So I need some information about fire fighter that are thriving with an ICD being an active fire fighter. I take no medication I have perfect check ups every 3 months and I have no limitations. Please any info would help Names, Numbers, Stories. God bless U

Report post

I am an active duty career FF with an ICD. I went into cardiac arrest on duty whle working out in May of 2006. I have had an icd since then and was back to full duty in 2 months. I work for Henrico County Fire in central VA, the second largest dept in the state with just under 570 sworn members. I am assigned to one of our busy stations, with our engine running around 2700 calls for service a year and have fought plenty of fire. Please text or call me at 8042418037 tommorrow, if i don't answer it is because I am in a EMS class with the dept all day and my voice mail is jacked up right now. I will Call u back ASAP.
Hope I can help you out.

Report post

I am an active duty career FF with an ICD. I went into cardiac arrest on duty whle working out in May of 2006. I have had an icd since then and was back to full duty in 2 months. I work for Henrico County Fire in central VA, the second largest dept in the state with just under 570 sworn members. I am assigned to one of our busy stations, with our engine running around 2700 calls for service a year and have fought plenty of fire. Please text or call me at 8042418037 tommorrow, if i don't answer it is because I am in a EMS class with the dept all day and my voice mail is jacked up right now. I will Call u back ASAP.
Hope I can help you out.

Report post

I am glad to see others with heart issues who have enjoyed good health. The heart is such a complex thing and one disease is unlike another and even those with the same disease can have very different experiences and prognoses.

Please keep in mind that this woman's husband has ARVD. I have ARVD too. I have very few restrictions, but high levels of exertion are off the list for me. Maybe with more ICDs implanted and more patients identified, more will become known about it and better predictability/prevention will be there too. Here's hoping for active days ahead for all of us!

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Things you can do

Support SCAA

Help the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association reach its goals and support people like yourself by making a donation today.

Donate to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association

Discussion topics

Community leaders