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We know it can be overwhelming if you’re diagnosed with a heart condition. Sharing stories and talking to others going through something similar can help.
There are many different heart conditions.
An arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm. Your heart is controlled by a conduction system which sends out electrical impulses. This causes a heartbeat. Arrhythmias are caused by a problem in this conduction system, which can make your heartbeat too slowly, too quickly, or in an irregular way.
Some abnormal heart rhythms can be caused by inherited conditions.
Symptoms depend on what type of arrhythmia you have. The most common symptoms include: palpitations (a thumping or fluttering sensation in your chest), dizziness, feeling as if you may ‘black out’, breathlessness, chest discomfort and feeling tired.
You should speak to your GP about your symptoms if:
• your palpitations last a long time, don't improve or get worse
• you have a history of heart problems
• you're concerned about the palpitations.
Your GP might refer you for tests, such as an ECG or an electrophysiological (EP) study.
Your treatment will depend on your type of arrhythmia. Common treatments include: medication, cardioversion, catheter ablation and inserting an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) or pacemaker.
Most arrhythmias are manageable. This means that with the right treatment, you can carry on living as you were before you were diagnosed. Living with an abnormal heart rhythm can be emotionally challenging for you and your family. It's important to manage anxiety and stress and get support from your GP or loved ones if needed.