Treating Abnormal Heart RhythmsMar 3, 2020
- Abnormal levels of potassium
- Heart attack, or a damaged heart muscle from a past heart attack
- Congenital heart disease
- Heart failure or an enlarged heart
- Overactive thyroid gland
- Substances or drugs, including alcohol, caffeine or stimulants, such as amphetamines, beta-blocker, nicotine or antidepressants
- Some of the more common abnormal heart rhythms are:
- Atrial fibrillation or flutter, where the heart ventricles beat very rapidly in a regular pattern
- Atrioventricular nodal reentry tachycardia (AVNRT), where there is an abnormal electrical impulse starting in the atria
- Heart block or atrioventricular block, where the electrical signals that stimulate heart muscle contractions are blocked between the atria and the ventricles
- Multifocal atrial tachycardia, where multiple locations in the atria fire signals at the same time
- Sick sinus syndrome, where the sinus node – the heart’s natural pacemaker – doesn’t work properly
- Electrocardiogram (ECG). During an ECG, sensors (electrodes) that can detect the electrical activity of the heart are attached to the chest and sometimes to the limbs. An ECG measures the timing and duration of each heartbeat.
- Holter monitor. This portable ECG device can be worn for a day or more to record heart's activity during a person’s daily routine.
- Echocardiogram. In this noninvasive test, a hand-held device (transducer) is placed on the chest and uses sound waves to produce images of the heart's size, structure and motion.