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How Are Heart Arrhythmias Treated?

As the name of our practice suggests, the primary focus of the team here at Heart Rhythm Associates is to help our patients remedy heart rhythm issues, or heart arrhythmias.

Under the direction of one of the leading cardiologists in the area, Dr. Van De Bruyn, we offer a wide range of treatment options for heart arrhythmias. These treatments are specific to the type of irregularity and the potential threat for serious complications, such as heart attack and stroke.

What this means is that you shouldn’t read the following to determine what your treatment might be, but rather, to educate yourself about the possibilities.

The most common types of arrhythmias

As we mentioned, an arrhythmia is an irregularity in your heartbeat, which can mean a heart rate that’s too fast, too slow, or erratic. 

Each beat of your heart is initiated by an electrical impulse that starts in the sinus node in the upper right atrium of your heart. This impulse is carried through the other three chambers, causing your heart to contract and release to keep blood flowing through.

When you have an arrythmia, the sequencing of electrical impulses is altered, which can affect the entire function of your heart.

There are many different types of arrhythmias, and we want to underscore an important point here: We’re painting a very broad picture of a very complex problem. With that in mind, here’s a look, in general terms, at the most common arrhythmias, which include:

Of this list, atrial fibrillation is the most prevalent, affecting 2.7 million Americans.

Treating arrhythmias

Before we get into common treatments for arrhythmias, we want to reiterate that any approach we recommend only comes after an extensive evaluation of your heart health, your current health, and your potential risks.

In many cases, we may not treat an arrhythmia unless we deem it clinically significant, which means that the problem places you at risk for a more serious arrhythmia or a life-threatening complication, such as heart attack or stroke.

If your arrhythmia poses no immediate threat, we monitor the situation closely and typically recommend lifestyle changes that support better heart health, such as:

If we feel that your arrhythmia may lead to complications, we can place you on medications, such as blood thinners, to prevent clots from forming.

If you have a moderate-to-severe arrhythmia, there are several steps we can take, such as:

Again, these represent the more common steps we take with worrisome arrhythmias, but your treatment may differ.

If you’d like to learn more about your treatment options for a heart arrhythmia, please contact our office in Little Rock, Arkansas, to learn more.

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