SVT includes several types of arrhythmias that cause an abnormally fast heartbeat, originating in the heart's upper chambers. In many cases, your heart also beats irregularly.
Normally, a cluster of cells in the heart's upper right chamber send out a regular electrical pulse that triggers each heartbeat. When you have SVT, the pulse that starts your heartbeat comes from a different part of your heart.
The other area fires too rapidly, raising your heart rate well over its normal 100 beats per minute, potentially going as much as three times faster.
The symptoms of SVT often start and stop suddenly. The rapid heartbeat may last from a few minutes to a few hours.
Common symptoms include:
These same symptoms occur in many types of heart disease. It's important to schedule an evaluation to identify the cause and start the appropriate treatment.
Your provider reviews your medical history and symptoms, completes an exam, and then runs diagnostic testing. You may need blood tests to rule out medical conditions that can cause a fast heartbeat, such as hyperthyroidism or an electrolyte imbalance.
To identify a heart condition, you may also need an electrocardiogram (EKG), echocardiogram, stress test, or electrophysiology studies.
Your provider customizes your SVT treatment based on the type of SVT and the severity of your symptoms. You may need:
Your provider teaches you actions you can take to stop an SVT episode.
Your provider may prescribe a fast-acting medication to take at the start of an SVT episode, as well as other long-term medications to reduce the frequency of SVT attacks.
Cardioversion is a treatment using medication or an electric shock to restore your heart's normal rhythm.
Cardiac ablation is a minimally invasive procedure using a catheter. Your provider guides the catheter through your blood vessels and into your heart. Then they send radiofrequency energy through the catheter, which destroys the tissues triggering the abnormal signals.
To get exceptional care for supraventricular tachycardia, call Coastal Cardiology of Orange County, or book an appointment online today.