Display Patient Information Leafelts

Your Implantable Loop Recorder (ILR) Post Implant

Date issued: June 2016

Review: June 2018

Ref: C-203/cardiology/LZ/your implantable loop (ILR) v2

PDF:  Implantable loop recorder (ILR) [pdf] 162KB


Now you have your Implantable Loop Recorder otherwise known as an ILR.


  • The ILR is an implantable device that records your heart rate and rhythm when activated by the patient when the patient has symptoms.
  • The ILR can also automatically record fast heart rhythms and slow heart rhythms that it detects.


Going Home from Hospital

  • Keep the wound clean and dry for the first week after your ILR implant and until you have seen the cardiac physiologist at your 1 week follow-up appointment, which you will have been given. Do not immerse the wound area in a bath and protect from water splashes if using a shower. Do not apply talc to the skin area or pick at the wound or dressing.

  • The dressing will be removed at the one week check by the cardiac physiologist.

  • You should not operate machinery for at least 24 hours.
  • It is important that you do not do any strenuous activity for about 1 week, particularly activities that involve moving your affected shoulder.  No stretching, lifting or pushing with arm on implant side for 1 week.
  • The wound site will feel tender and look bruised. This is normal and you may need to take a painkiller such as Paracetamol to help. Do not take Aspirin unless instructed by your Doctor, as it can increase the bruising. The bruising may take up to three weeks to disappear.
  • If your wound becomes red, hot, increasingly tender and / or produces any discharge either soon after implant or in the future, please call the Pacemaker /ILR clinic on 01752 431676 in the first instance.


ILR follow up

  • You will have been given a follow appointment to come to the ILR clinic for a one week check to have your device checked and dressing removed.  You will continue to have regular check-ups at the hospital.


ILR activator

  • You will be given an activator which accompanies the ILR, the activator is to be kept with you at all time, the cardiac physiologist will advise you and demonstrate how to work the activator and perform an activation so that when you experience your symptoms you can record the event.
  • Please perform a test activation the day before your one week check to ensure you are happy and understand how to perform an activation.
  • The cardiac physiologist will also inform you how many activations you can perform before you have to contact the Pacemaker /ILR  clinic on 01752 431676, to arrange a review of your activations and symptoms.
  • It is good practice to inform partners/ carers and family on how to activate the ILR if you have a blackout for example and are unable to activate the ILR yourself.


ILR identification card

  • You will be given a small device identification card, it is very important to keep this with you at all times, you might have to produce it at hospital visits and hospital admissions as well as airports.




  • The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has strict rules about driving if you have an ILR.

You must let the DVLA know that you have an ILR as well as your driving insurers.  Your Consultant will be able to advise you on the time period you must restrain from driving.



Living with an ILR

  • There are no significant risks to patients who have an ILR implanted, however If you need to go to hospital to have a scan you should let a member of staff know that you have an ILR.
  • You can have an MRI scan but must inform the hospital you have an ILR on arrival and before the scan is performed.



What should I do if I have activated my ILR after having symptoms?

  • If you have activated your ILR for symptoms or the advised amount of times please call the cardiology clinic on 01752 431676 for advice and to arrange a check-up
  • If you have activated your ILR but feel very unwell you must call 999 for an ambulance or make your way safely to your nearest ED department




For any further advice or assistance please call the Pacemaker /ILR clinic on 01752 431676.

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