What is an Arrhythmia?
An arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm. There are two basic kinds:
Bradycardia is when the heart rate is too slow – less than 60 beats per minute.
Tachycardia is when the heart rate is too fast – more than 100 beats per minute.
Manage Risk Factors
Having an arrhythmia increases risk of heart attack, cardiac arrest and stroke. Control risk factors:
- Reduce high blood pressure
- Control cholesterol levels
- Lose excess weight
- Eat a heart-healthy diet
- Avoid tobacco smoke
- Regular physical activity
Most arrhythmias are considered harmless and are left untreated. A treatment plan shall be set once the doctor determines if the arrhythmia is abnormal and clinically significant.
Treatment may include lifestyle modification, medications, surgery, a pacemaker, cardiac defibrillation and cardiac ablation
Signs of Arrhythmia
- When it’s very brief, it can feel like a skipped heartbeat that you barely notice.
- It may also feel like a fluttering in the chest or neck.
- Tachycardia, when severe or lasts long, can reduce the hearts ability to pump enough blood to the body causing shortness of breath, chest pain, tiredness, light-headedness, loss of consciousness, a heart attack or even death.