Technology

Apple's MagSafe can damage cardiac devices and inhibit therapies, study says

Devices with Apple’s MagSafe technology can cause significant interference on cardiac devices like pacemakers   | Photo Credit: Apple

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Devices with Apple’s MagSafe technology can cause clinically significant interference on cardiac devices like pacemakers when they are placed close to these devices or on the skin, according to a study by The American Heart Association (AHA).

"Apple's iPhone 12 Pro Max MagSafe technology can cause magnetic interference on cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIEDs) and has the potential to inhibit life-saving therapy," AHA said.

Apple's MagSafe is a proprietary wireless charging technology with an array of magnets that has the capacity to generate magnetic field strength of more than 50 gauss.

The AHA researchers found that magnet reversion mode in CIED is triggered when iPhone 12 Pro Max is placed on the skin close to a CIED. This can inhibit life saving therapies.

People often put their smartphones in a breast pocket which can be in close proximity to CIEDs. This can lead to asynchronous pacing or disabling of life saving therapies, according to the AHA.

This study had two components, in vivo and ex vivo. The in vivo component consisted of patients with previously implanted CIEDs. The iPhone 12 Pro Max was directly placed on the skin of these patients that resulted in magnetic interference in 100% patients.

Also Read | Apple’s watch and phone can replace in-clinic test for select group of users: study

For the ex vivo component of the study, researchers were able to trigger magnet reversion by placing the iPhone 12 Pro Max at up to 1.5 cm from unopened packaged CIEDs of major device companies like Medtronic, Abbott and Boston Scientific.


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Printable version | Jul 26, 2021 1:41:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/apples-magsafe-can-damage-cardiac-devices-and-inhibit-therapies-study-says/article34749967.ece

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