Advanced Heart & Vascular Specialists
Cardiology & Vascular Specialists located in Las Vegas, NV
Temporary abnormalities in your heart rhythm, called arrhythmias, may be harmless. Some arrhythmias, however, can be life-threatening and require medical attention. The top-rated cardiologists at Advanced Heart & Vascular Specialists in Las Vegas can accurately diagnose the cause of your abnormal heartbeat. These talented heart specialists then design a treatment strategy to help manage your arrhythmia. Schedule your visit today. Call the office or book your appointment online.
Arrhythmia Management Q & A
What is an arrhythmia?
Electrical impulses that keep the heart pumping originate in the SA (sinoatrial) node, which is a specialized cluster of cells in the right upper chamber of your heart that controls the rate and rhythm of your heartbeat.
The SA node starts the beat and sends signals out that cause your heart muscles to contract and pump blood to the rest of the body. When all is functioning well, your heart is in normal sinus rhythm with a steady resting heart rate of 60-100 beats per minute.
Arrhythmias occur when these electrical impulses don’t function normally and cause your heart to beat too fast (tachycardia) or too slow (bradycardia). There are a variety of arrhythmias that are characterized by abnormal or irregular heart rhythms.
Why should I be concerned about arrhythmias?
Your heart relies on a regular, rhythmic beat to function normally. Although some types of arrhythmia are harmless, an irregular heartbeat may indicate serious health concerns, including:
- A heart attack in progress or scarring from a previous “silent” heart attack
- Enlarged heart (cardiomyopathy) and other changes to your heart's structure
- Coronary artery disease or blocked arteries in your heart
Your cardiologist can identify the reasons for your arrhythmia and ensure you get treatment that may prevent a serious, life-threatening cardiac event.
What are the symptoms of an arrhythmia?
When you have an episode of arrhythmia, you may notice what feels like extra or skipped beats or that your heart seems to be racing. Other signs to watch for include:
- Chest pain or discomfort
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Shortness of breath
- Unexplained sweating
- Fainting or feeling as if you might faint
How do you manage an arrhythmia?
Effective treatment for an arrhythmia starts with diagnostic studies that identify the characteristics and cause of the irregular beats. Once that’s known, the experts at Advanced Heart & Vascular Specialists may prescribe one or multiple therapies to manage your arrhythmia, including:
- Vagal maneuvers, such as bending over or holding your breath to help stop tachycardia
- Implantable pacemaker, a device that controls the pace of your heartbeats
- Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD), which detects abnormal beats and sends out electrical “shocks” to reset your heart rhythm
For expert management of an arrhythmia, call Advanced Heart & Vascular Specialists for an appointment or book your visit online.