Driving restriction in patients with cardiac implantable electronic devices: an overview of worldwide regulations

Jacopo F. Imberti, Marco Vitolo, Marco Proietti, Igor Diemberger, Matteo Ziacchi, Mauro Biffi, Giuseppe Boriani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Introduction: It is common belief that driving with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)/pacemaker (PM) might be associated with sudden cardiac incapacitation, road traffic accidents, and chance to harm to self and others. On the other hand, the ability to drive is highly valuable in the modern era, representing a cornerstone of daily living and employment. National regulations try to balance the right to drive of ICD/PM patients and the risk they pose to public safety, but rules for granting them a driving license are considerably different worldwide. For the same subset of patients driving restrictions may vary between 1 week and 1 year depending on the local law. Areas covered: In this article we systematically review driving restrictions in ICD/PM patients in 16 countries all over the world, highlighting their differences and analyzing data from the literature that underlie their formulation. Expert opinion: Current regulations are mainly based on historical data that do not take into account improvements in ICD/PM technologies and driving environment, which have made driving with an ICD/PM is substantially safe. Newer studies and updated regulatory documents are warranted to set the best driving restrictions and reach homogeneity worldwide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-308
Number of pages12
JournalExpert Review of Medical Devices
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2 2020


  • cardiac implantable electronic device
  • CRT
  • Driving license
  • ICD
  • implantable cardioverter defibrillator
  • pacemaker
  • PM
  • sudden cardiac death

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Biomedical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Driving restriction in patients with cardiac implantable electronic devices: an overview of worldwide regulations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this