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How is a Holter monitor used to diagnose atrial fibrillation?

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You keep this with you for 24 to 48 hours while it continuously records your heart's electrical activity. The extra time gives a better chance of picking up an abnormal heart rhythm, what doctors call an arrhythmia. Just as with a regular electrocardiogram, you'll have small electrodes attached to your chest. Wires connect these electrodes to a small recorder you can clip on a belt, keep in a pocket, or hang around your neck. Then you just go about doing what you usually do. Your doctor will check the recorded results later.

SOURCES:

National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: "How is Atrial Fibrillation Diagnosed?"

American Heart Association: "Common Tests for Arrhythmia."

Northwestern Memorial Hospital: "Atrial Fibrillation Express Test."

Heart Rhythm Society: "Diagnosing Atrial Fibrillation (AFib)."

Medscape: "Atrial Fibrillation Workup: Lab Studies."

Reviewed by James Beckerman on May 17, 2018

SOURCES:

National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: "How is Atrial Fibrillation Diagnosed?"

American Heart Association: "Common Tests for Arrhythmia."

Northwestern Memorial Hospital: "Atrial Fibrillation Express Test."

Heart Rhythm Society: "Diagnosing Atrial Fibrillation (AFib)."

Medscape: "Atrial Fibrillation Workup: Lab Studies."

Reviewed by James Beckerman on May 17, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

How is an event monitor used to diagnose atrial fibrillation?

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