Arrhythmias (ref. link) are associated with an irregular heartbeat (ref. link) that can lead to severe heart issues, even potentially becoming life-threatening. Heart arrhythmias include stroke, organ failure, complete heart failure, or cardiac arrest.
So, how to know whether or not you are experiencing a high-grade arrhythmia and need urgent treatment? Read on to find out all about life-threatening Heart Arrhythmias in this detailed guide.
Heart Arrhythmias are of two types (ref. link): Tachycardia (the heart beats too fast, more than 100 beats per minute) and Bradycardia (the heart beats too slow, fewer than 60 beats per minute). Most arrhythmias are not lethal and can be treated with medication and simple lifestyle changes.
However, there are cases that are often fatal and require immediate treatment. Some of these are Asystole, prolonged pauses or long QT syndrome, and ventricular arrhythmias like ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia. Let’s understand some of these Heart Arrhythmias in detail.
Ventricular fibrillation or (V-fib) arrhythmia is a life-threatening condition. In this case, the patient’s ventricles start to quiver instead of pumping blood, causing the heart to collapse. Numerous factors can cause V-fib, such as poor blood flow, cardiomyopathy, damage to the heart muscle, aorta issues, and drug toxicity. Hence, it’s advisable to seek immediate medical attention at the earliest.
Ventricular tachycardia is a type of Heart Arrhythmia that affects the ventricles, causing the heart rate to become high and unstable. In this case, pressure in the heart increases as it pumps fast, causing the fluid to back up in the lungs. This weakens the heart muscle and causes cardiac arrest. Therefore, it’s best to seek a cardiologist when needing to treat ventricular tachycardia arrhythmias.
HAVB can result in Bradycardia when the electrical signal between the heart’s atria and the ventricles weakens. It makes the heartbeat inconsistent and often leads to a complete heart block. Therefore, patients with symptoms like shortness of breath, fatigue, or loss of consciousness must contact a doctor immediately.
Lastly, Asystole (ref. link) (a failure of electrical and mechanical activity of the heart) is the most lethal form of Heart Arrhythmia that can occur when ventricular arrhythmias worsen. It’s better to contact your family physician if you experience even minor symptoms.
No matter how fatal Heart Arrhythmias are, patients often ignore the symptoms as they might occur for a small amount of time. Therefore, it is important to always watch out for signs like:
A doctor’s advice is necessary when experiencing these symptoms, as the signs might worsen over time. The patients may show unresponsiveness, lose consciousness, or have difficulty breathing. So, the earlier you can assess whether or not you are at risk of developing complications such as life-threatening Heart Arrhythmias, the better.
Consider the things mentioned in the list below to know whether or not you can experience arrhythmias. You are at risk if:
Thankfully, there are several ways to reduce the risk of life-threatening arrhythmias. Some of them include avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco products, lessening excess use of Amphetamines, cold medicines, and cough suppressants, and taking medical advice while taking weight loss drugs, beta-blockers, or any psychotropic medications.
You can decrease the probability of severe conditions of arrhythmias by (ref. link)
Proper diagnosis of arrhythmias to start the recovery process is equally important too!
There are various ways through which a cardiologist detects irregular heart rhythms and checks how severe arrhythmias are:
Medication, medical therapy, and surgery are the three options for high-risk heart arrhythmias patients. Doctors decide whether to give drugs to control heart rhythm or opt for surgery. The best thing is all the treatments show positive results and help patients retain a healthy life.
Types of surgeries to treat two life-threatening arrhythmias like Ventricular fibrillation or ventricular tachycardia include:
Lastly, Coronary bypass surgery is another option for high-grade arrhythmias patients that helps improve the heart’s blood flow and prevent arrhythmias.
An active lifestyle and a healthy and nutritious diet are the best ways to control the symptoms of low-grade arrhythmias. However, sports enthusiasts and fitness freaks can have Atrial fibrillation (AFIB) and notice symptoms during exercising, including heart palpitations, excess sweating, dizziness, and shortness of breath. These can develop into two life-threatening arrhythmias. So, it’s advisable to schedule regular appointments with a doctor if you have symptoms that can lead to arrhythmias.
Finally, while it used to be difficult to catch arrhythmias during daily life, our revolutionary Frontier X2 heart monitoring device and it’s continuous ECG feature will keep you secure and never let you miss an event.
Ventricular Fibrillation, or V-fib, is the most common arrhythmia that leads to a cardiac arrest. During V-fib, there is a rapid heartbeat in the heart’s left ventricle which causes the heart to dysfunction.
Any situation that makes the heart work harder to pump more blood, raising the blood pressure or making the body release stress hormones, can trigger an arrhythmia (ref. link). Such situations can arise if your blood sugar levels are too low or too high, in case of increased intake of caffeine, a sudden shock or surprise or dehydration.
Stress can cause some heart arrythmias (ref. link) such as atrial fibrillation or AFib. Suffering from anxiety can elevate the severeness of an atrial fibrillation arrhythmia.
The most fatal of the heart arrhythmias can be Ventricular Fibrillation or V-fib. During a V-fib the heart stops pumping blood. If not treated within minutes, V-fib can cause instant death.
A few food and lifestyle habits have been known to aggravate the heart arrhythmia (ref. link). One must avoid (ref. link) too much caffeine, alcohol, herbal supplements, food rich in sodium and foods containing tyramine such as soy sauce and parmesan cheese. Apart from this, overeating or eating large portions of meals can also contribute to the condition.
Other Heart Health Topics To Explore:
Heart Rate While Running | Silent heart attack | Heart Attack Symptoms | Heart Palpitations Causes | Increased Heart Rate | Healthy Heart Tips | Running Heart Rate Zones | Heart Attack causes | Wearable ECG Monitor | Cardio Exercise