A pacemaker is a battery - powered device about the size of a pocket watch that sends weak electrical impulses to “set a pace” so that the heart is able to maintain a regular heartbeat. There are two basic types of pacemakers:Single - chamber pacemakers stimulate one chamber of the heart, either an atrium or more often a ventricle. Dual - chamber pacemakers send electrical impulses to both the
Symptoms of atrial fibrillation include:Heart palpitations.Irregular pulse.Shortness of breath, especially during physical activity or emotional stress.Weakness, fatigue.Dizziness, confusion.Lightheadedness or fainting (syncope).Chest pain (angina).Atrial fibrillation is often discovered during routine medical checkups, because many people do not have symptoms. Others may notice an irregular ...
Asking questions about your medical history and doing a physical exam for atrial fibrillation can reveal important information about your health and will often direct more testing.Your doctor may ask the following questions:What symptoms, if any, have you experienced?Have you experienced a sensation of fluttering in your chest? Any lightheadedness? Any chest pain? Any shortness of breath?Have you
Health Tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health.Decision Points focus on key medical care decisions that are important to many health problems. Advance Care Planning: Should I Stop Treatment That Prolongs My Life?
Are there driving restrictions for people with heart rhythm problems?If you have an arrhythmia or an ICD that makes it dangerous for you to drive, your doctor might suggest that you stop driving, at least for a short time.If you have an arrhythmia that doesn't cause significant symptoms, you don't have to stop or limit driving.This topic is about driving private vehicles. For commercial driving, the government has specific regulations about driving when you have certain medical conditions.Restrictions on the right to drive depend on several factors. Your doctor makes a recommendation based on:1Any symptoms you may have had, like fainting. The cause of your arrhythmia. The likelihood that your arrhythmia will happen again.If your arrhythmia has been treated successfully.If your ICD has given you a shock for an arrhythmia.Is it okay to drive if you have an arrhythmia?You can drive with an arrhythmia as long as it doesn't cause symptoms that makes it dangerous for you to drive.Your
Health Tools help you make wise health decisions or take action to improve your health.Actionsets are designed to help people take an active role in managing a health condition. Heart Problems: Living With a PacemakerHeart Problems: Living With an ICD
Vagal maneuvers are used to try to slow an episode of fast heart rate. These simple maneuvers stimulate the vagus nerve,sometimes resulting in slowed conduction of electrical impulses through the atrioventricular (AV) node of the heart. Be sure to talk to your doctor before trying these. Vagal maneuvers that you can try to slow your fast heart rate include: Gagging. Holding your breath and ...
An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) helps protect you against dangerous heart rhythms. It's important to know how this device works and how to keep it working right. Learning a few important facts about ICDs can help you get the best results from your device.You may have a device that combines an ICD with a pacemaker, which keeps your heart from beating too slowly. For more information on pacemakers, see Heart Problems: Living With a Pacemaker.Key pointsAvoid strong magnetic and electrical fields. These can keep your device from working right. Most office equipment and home appliances are safe to use. Learn which things you should use with caution and which you should stay away from.Know what to do when you get a shock from your ICD. Be sure that any doctor, dentist, or other health professional you see knows that you have an ICD. Always carry a card in your wallet that tells what kind of device you have. Wear medical alert jewelry that says you have an ICD. Have your