Written by Asha Sampath | 
Medically Reviewed by dr. reeja tharu, M.Phil.,Ph.D on Jun 20, 2014

Heart Disease and Air Travel

Patients who have had an uncomplicated heart attack or myocardial infarction are not generally advised to fly within three weeks of its occurrence. Those who have had a coronary angioplasty or bypass surgery are comparatively at lower risk; these patients may fly two weeks after the procedure, provided there are no other complications. Other heart conditions have to be evaluated individually by a physician so that they can be safe and comfortable.

General instructions for passengers with cardiac problems are:

  • Place all required medications for the flight in your cabin baggage or carry-on luggage.
  • Carry a copy of the most recent electrocardiogram, especially those with a pacemaker or other cardiac implants. (Airport security devices do not interfere with pacemakers or other implanted cardiac devices.)
  • Inform airlines ahead of your flight to provide you with supplemental oxygen, in case of a medical emergency


  1. Medical Advice for Commercial Air Travelers - (http://www.aafp.org/afp/990901ap/801.html)
  2. Health and Travel Tips - (http://www.aircanada.com/en/travelinfo/onboard/healthtips.html)

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