Tips for Health

What is Arrhythmia and What Are Its Symptoms?

By on June 27, 2012 in Diseases, Health, Prevention with 0 Comments


What is an arrhythmia?

An arrhythmia is a change in the rhythm of your heartbeat. When the heart beats too fast, it’s called tachycardia. When it beats too slow, it’s called bradycardia. An arrhythmia can also mean that the heart beats irregularly (skips a beat or has an extra beat).

What are the symptoms of arrhythmia?

Call your doctor if any of these symptoms, especially if you have heart disease or have had a heart attack.

  • Palpitations or rapid thumping in your chest
  • Feeling tired or lightheadedness
  • Fainting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain

At some time or another, most people have felt that the heart has accelerated or skipped a beat. These occasional changes can occur due to strong emotions or exercise. In general, they are not a cause for alarm. Arrhythmias that occur more often or cause other symptoms may be more serious and need to be discussed with your doctor.

How serious is an arrhythmia?

In most people, arrhythmias are minor and are not dangerous. However, a small number of people have arrhythmias that are dangerous and require treatment. Arrhythmias are also more serious if you have other heart problems. In general, arrhythmias that begin in the lower heart chambers (called ventricles) are more serious than those that begin in the upper chambers (called atria). Your doctor will talk to you about the type of arrhythmia you have and whether you need treatment.

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