Arrhythmia Clinic

Our physicians are leading clinicians and researchers in their field. They use effective, proven approaches to treat a range of conditions, such as:

These services can be used by our physicians to treat a variety of conditions, including:

  • Atrial Fibrillation
  • Premature Ventricular complexes (PVCs)
  • Ventricular Tachycardia (VT)
  • Supraventricular Tachycardia (SVT)
  • Ventricular Fibrillation
  • Inherited Arrhythmia Syndromes
  • Syncope (fainting)

How is an Arrhythmia diagnosed?

Your heart has a complex electrical system that keeps it beating at the right speed and in an orderly rhythm. When something goes wrong with this system, a diagnosis to determine the severity of the arrhythmia is made by one of our electrophysiologists (cardiologists with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of heart rhythm disorders). Some of the tools used in imaging and mapping the heart are:

  • Electrophysiology Testing – Catheters (thin, flexible tubes) are threaded through a patient’s blood vessels to the heart. This allows the physician to observe the location of the arrhythmia and the mechanics of the heart that may be causing the irregular heartbeat.
  • Electrocardiography (ECG) – Measures the timing and duration of each electrical phase in the heartbeat.
  • ECG Stress Testing – Monitors heart rhythm during exercise.
  • Echocardiography – Produces detailed images of the heart using sound waves.
  • Transesophageal Echocardiography – Provides a detailed image of the heart’s size, structure and motion using a monitor inserted down the throat.
  • Tilt Table Test – Records heart rhythm and blood pressure on a minute-by-minute basis while the table is tilted in a head-up position at different levels.
  • Holter Monitor and implantable loop recorders – Records heart rate and rhythm during daily routines through an either portable ECG device that the patient wears for a day or more, or implantable device that may last for more than 18 months.

How is an Arrhythmia treated?

Treatment depends on the type and severity of an arrhythmia. In some cases, no treatment is necessary, but the patient will need to be rechecked on a regular basis. Sometimes, lifestyle changes need to be made since arrhythmias can be affected by smoking, alcohol, caffeine or certain stressful activities. Medications (antiarrhythmic therapy) can also be effective in returning the heart to a normal rhythm.

Arrhythmias are considered serious when the heart beats too slow or too fast to effectively pump blood.

Implantable loop recorders: a diagnostic device implanted in the chest wall that constantly monitors the heart rhythm.

  • Pacemaker Implantation – A device implanted in the chest sends small electrical impulses to the heart muscle to maintain a normal heart rate.
  • Cardiac Defibrillator Implantation – A device implanted in the chest constantly monitors the heart rhythm. When it detects a very fast, abnormal heart rhythm, it delivers energy to the heart muscle to cause the heart to beat in a normal rhythm again.