Tag Archives: heart conditions

An Introduction to Heart Arrhythmia

29 Aug

For more than 20 years, Cardiac Monitoring Services has aided the diagnosis of a number of heart conditions by providing monitoring equipment and results analysis services. Cardiac Monitoring Services offers the Holter heart monitor, a device that records all cardiac activity for up to seven days. The data collected from these recordings can be used to generate a signal-averaged electrocardiogram, a form of diagnostic imaging used to detect arrhythmia.

An arrhythmia occurs when the heart beats with an abnormal rhythm. Heartbeat irregularities can prevent the heart from pumping blood correctly throughout the body, potentially causing damage to other organs. As there are many ways in which a person’s heart may beat irregularly, an arrhythmia can occur in many forms.

When an arrhythmia causes the heart to beat too slowly, the condition is called bradycardia. Bradycardia is typically marked by a heart rate lower than 60 beats per minute (BPM); however, the BPM threshold for a problematic heart rate varies, depending on a patient’s age and physical fitness. The same is true for tachycardia, which occurs when a patient’s heart beats too fast, typically with a BPM higher than 100. Atrial fibrillation is a type of arrhythmia that presents as an irregular or “quivering” heartbeat. Some patients describe this condition as feeling like the heart is skipping beats or banging against the chest cavity, while others do not experience any symptoms at all.