An arrhythmia is an irregular heart rhythm. An arrhythmia can occur with a normal heart rate or with fast or slow heart rates. Causes may include coronary artery disease, heart attack, heart surgery, blood imbalances, and more. There are many types of arrhythmias including atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter. Treatments include medications and lifestyle changes, cardioversion, pacemakers, ICDs, and surgery. Follow the links below to find WebMD's comprehensive coverage about how arrhythmia is caused, what it looks like, how to treat it, and much more.
Abnormal Heart Rhythms and Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators (ICD)
Abnormal heart rhythms sometimes require the use of an ICD or implantable cardioverter defibrillator. WebMD explains how the device works.
Change in Heartbeat-Preparing For Your Appointment
To prepare for your appointment,see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment. You can help your doctor diagnose and treat your condition by being prepared to answer the following questions: Do you have a history of problems with your heart rate or rhythm? If so: Did you see a doctor? What was the diagnosis? What tests were done? How was it treated? When did you first notice the change in ...
Change in Heartbeat-Prevention
You often can reduce or prevent changes in your heart rate or rhythm. Prevent fatigue by getting plenty of sleep and rest. If you become overtired,your changes in heart rate or rhythm may be more severe or occur more often. Cut back or eliminate caffeine,including coffee,tea,colas,and chocolate. Some nonprescription medicines,such as Excedrin,contain caffeine. Caffeine increases your ...
Change in Heartbeat-Home Treatment
Home treatment can help relieve some problems that cause changes in your heart rate. When you think you have a change in your heart rate or rhythm: Sit down and take your pulse for 1 minute. If you become lightheaded,sit or lie down to avoid injuries that might occur if you faint and fall. Take a few deep breaths and try to relax. This may slow down a racing heart rate. Be careful not to ...
5 Heart Rate Myths Debunked
Myths and facts about heart rates, including what an erratic heart rate means and the link between your pulse and stress.
Atrial Fibrillation (AFib) Myths and Facts
Did you know? If you have AFib, you can drive, have sex, and even eat ice cream. Find out if what you think is true.
Medication to Control Your Heart's Rate and Rhythm
Different kinds of medication can treat the irregular heartbeat of AFib, by controlling the rate or the rhythm.
Slideshows & Images
A Holter monitor is a type of ambulatory electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG). Ambulatory means that you are able to walk. This device can record the electrical activity of your heart while you move around to do your usual activities. You might wear it for 24 to 72 hours. The monitor is a lightweight, battery-operated tape recorder. You can wear it on a strap over your shoulder. Or you can wear it around your waist. The monitor is connected by wires to small metal discs (electrodes) taped to your chest.
Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD)
Image of an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD); A doctor places an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (also called an ICD) in the chest. The ICD has one or two wires called leads that connect to the heart through a vein. The ICD checks the heartbeat for an abnormal rhythm. If the ICD senses an abnormal heart rhythm,it sends out either electrical pulses or a shock to fix it. ...
Slideshow: 20 Foods That Can Save Your Heart
The top foods for heart health go beyond cholesterol busters to edamame, nuts, salmon, even coffee. Cooking tips and pictures show how to work new foods into your diet.
Slideshow: A Visual Guide to Atrial Fibrillation
See inside a heart during atrial fibrillation. Pictures show the causes, tests, and treatments for this common heart rhythm problem through illustrations and photos.