Overview

ventricular tachycardia
Ventricular Tachycardia (source)

Ventricular tachycardia can be described as an abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia) that is caused by the abnormal electrical signals that occur in those lower heart chambers (ventricles). This condition can also be known as V-tach.

A healthy heart usually runs between 60 and 100 times per minute when in rest. In ventricular tachycardia, the heart beats faster than usual typically 100 or more beats per minute.

Rapid heartbeats can prevent the heart chambers from filling with blood. This means that your heart might not be able sufficient blood into your body or your lungs.

Ventricular Tachycardia could last just a few seconds or it could last more than. You might feel dizzy or exhausted or feel chest discomfort. Sometimes, ventricular tachycardia may make your heart stop (sudden heart attack) this is a serious medical emergency.

 

 

Symptoms

A brief episode of ventricular tachycardia does not cause symptoms for some individuals. You may also be suffering from:

More-serious and prolonged instances of ventricular tachycardia could be the cause of:

When is the best time to seek medical help?

Numerous conditions can cause ventricular Tachycardia. It’s crucial to get an accurate, prompt diagnosis and the appropriate treatment. Consult your physician if you or your child have problems with your heartbeat. In some instances, urgent medical attention is required.

Take immediate care or call your urgent number for those who is experiencing these signs:

Causes

Ventricular Tachycardia is caused by a disturbance in regular electrical signals which regulate the heart’s pumping.

Numerous things can trigger or contribute to issues with the electrical circuits of the heart. This includes:

In some instances, the cause of the ventricular tachycardia cannot be identified (idiopathic ventricular Tachycardia).

The electrical system of the heart.

To better understand the root of heart rate problems or rhythm issues like tachycardia, it is helpful to understand how the electrical system of the heart functions.

The heart is comprised of four chambers: two chambers in the upper (atria) along with two lower chambers (ventricles). The heartbeat is controlled by a naturally-occurring pacemaker, called the sinus node. It lies in the atrium of your right. The sinus node creates electrical impulses, which normally begin every heartbeat.

Through the sinus node, electrical impulses flow across the atria and cause the muscles in the atrial region to tighten and to pump blood to smaller chambers in the heart (ventricles).

The electrical signals then land at a collection of cells known as an Atrioventricular (AV) node, which is generally the sole route for signals to go between the atria and the ventricles.

The AV Node slows down electrical signal before it is sent through the ventricles. This delay is just enough to allow ventricles to fill up with blood. When electrical signals reach the ventricles’ muscles they contract, prompting them to push blood to the lungs or the rest of the body.

If anything disturbs this intricate system, it could cause the heartbeat to be too quickly (tachycardia) or too slowly (bradycardia) or have irregular heartbeats.

Risk factors

Any illness that puts an undue strain on your heart or causes damage to the heart tissue could increase your chance of suffering from ventricular Tachycardia. Medical treatment or lifestyle changes could reduce the risk associated with the following risk factors:

If you’ve got a family background of ventricular tachycardia or any other irregular heartbeats, then you could be at a higher risk of Ventricular Tachycardia.

Complications

Complications of ventricular Tachycardia differ in severity and are based on the speed at which your heart beats as well as how long the rapid heartbeat continues, how frequently the tachycardia happens and the overall health of your heart. Some possible complications include:

Ventricular fibrillation

A potentially dangerous condition associated with ventricular tachycardia can be ventricular fibrillation (V-fib). In vfib, the lower chambers of your heart contract very quickly and uncoordinatedly way.

The abnormal rhythm is seen typically in patients who suffer from heart disease or a previous heart attack. It could also be due to electrolyte issues (such as low or high potassium levels) or, more rarely the heart is otherwise healthy.

Ventricular fibrillation could also cause sudden cardiac arrest, which can cause death if not treated promptly.

Prevention

The most effective way to avoid ventricular tachycardia is by treating or eliminating risk factors that can cause heart disease. If you are already suffering from heart disease, you must follow your treatment regimen and lifestyle that is healthy for your heart.

Follow these steps:

Diagnosis

A thorough physical examination along with medical history and testing is necessary to determine if you have the condition of ventricular tachycardia.

Your doctor will assess your symptoms, conduct an examination of your body and inquire about your lifestyle and medical background. In some instances, ventricular tachycardia could be an emergency medical situation that requires immediate evaluation and intervention.

There are a variety of tests that can be conducted to determine if you have the condition of Ventricular Tachycardia.

VT ( ventricular tachycardia)Electrocardiogram (ECG also known as EKG) is the largest and most commonly used tool to detect the presence of tachycardia. The test is painless and the heart’s electrical activity by using tiny sensors (electrodes) that are attached to your chest and arms.

An ECG  test measures the strength and timing of electrical signals as they move throughout your heart. Your doctor can search for patterns in those signals and determine the type of tachycardia you suffer from and what issues in your heart might be contributing to rapid heart rate.

Your doctor may also suggest you carry the portable devices at home to get additional information regarding the heartbeat. These devices include:

Electrophysiological test

The doctor might recommend an electrophysiological test to confirm your diagnosis or to determine the source of the problem in your heart.

In this test, a physician introduces flexible, thin tubes (catheters) that are topped with electrodes in your arm, groin, or neck, and guides them through blood vessels to the various locations within your heart. Once they are in place, the electrodes are able to precisely track the electrical impulses that travel throughout each heartbeat and detect irregularities in your circuit.

Cardiac imaging

The doctor might take images from your heart, to see whether structural issues can affect blood flow, and are causing your ventricular Tachycardia.

Cardiac imaging tests to determine if a ventricular tachycardia is a present include:

A look inside the heart using MRI

Cardiac MRI offers images that are still or moving of the blood moving through the heart and detects any irregularities. It is commonly used to detect ventricular tachycardia.

Stress test

Your doctor may suggest the stress test to check the way your heart functions during your activity or when you are prescribed medication to make your heart run more quickly.

In an exercise stress test, the electrodes will be placed over your chest in order to check your heart’s activity while you exercise, typically using the treadmill. Other tests for heart function could be conducted in conjunction with the stress test.

Tilt table test

This test can be utilized to assist your doctor know how your tachycardia can contribute to fainting periods. With careful supervision, the patient will receive medicine that triggers a tachycardia event. You lay flat on a table and the table is tilted to the point that it appears as like you’re standing. The doctor will note the way that your nervous and heart react to these changes in posture.

Additional tests

Your doctor might order additional tests to determine if there is an underlying issue that is causing heart tachycardia ventricular and assess the health that your heart is in.

Treatment

MDtodate doctors provide specialized treatment to treat ventricular tachycardia with the most advanced treatments technologies.

The primary goals of ventricular Tachycardia treatment include:

The type of treatment you are given is dependent on the cause of the arrhythmia as well as the nature or degree of your ventricular tachycardia.

The tachycardia in the ventricular region could disappear by itself in less than 30 minutes (nonsustained V-tach ) or last longer than thirty seconds (sustained V-tach or VT ). Sustained VT could disrupt the normal flow of blood and require immediate medical attention.

Treatment for ventricular tachycardia that is sustained

The condition is often referred to as sustained ventricular tachycardia and needs medical attention immediately in order to prevent cause sudden cardiac death.

Treatment involves restoring normal heart beat by sending the heart with a surge of electric current. the heart. This can be accomplished with an implantable defibrillator or through the treatment known as cardioversion.

Defibrillation is performed using the automated external defibrillator (AED) or by a passerby who is aware of the symptoms warnings of cardiac collapse.

Cardioversion can be performed in a hospital environment using the aid of a device that monitors your heart’s rhythm before and after shocks are given. In this method, medical experts shock your heart with paddles as well as the automated external defibrillator (AED) or patches placed on your chest.

You can also receive medication via mouth or intravenous (intravenously).

In preventing episodes of a rapid heart rate

Through treatment, it might be possible to stop or reduce the frequency of Ventricular Tachycardia.

Diagnose and treat any disease that is present

If a medical condition contributes to ventricular tachycardia like coronary artery disease, receiving treatment for the root issue can prevent or decrease the frequency of ventricular tachycardia events.

Follow-up on your treatment program is essential. It will help reduce your chance of developing the development of heart rhythm issues in the future. If your symptoms change or get worse or you develop new symptoms, tell your doctor immediately.

 

Support and Coping

When you’ve got a strategy that you have in place to handle the sudden occurrence of a rapid heartbeat, you might be more relaxed and feel more in control whenever one happens. Consult your physician about:

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