Bradycardia (Slow Heart Beat)

The heart rate in an adult should be between 60 and 100 beats per minute. If the heart rate drops below 60, there is bradycardia (slow heartbeat). It is dangerous if the speed drops below 40, or if it causes symptoms when below 60.

Bradycardia must be followed carefully. If left uncontrolled, it can lead to fainting, heart failure and sudden death. In young people and intensely trained athletes, the heart rate may be below 60 and this is not a problem.

Bradycardia Symptoms

When bradycardia occurs, the following symptoms may occur, depending on the heart’s inability to adequately pump oxygen-rich blood:

  • dizziness
  • extreme fatigue
  • Fainting
  • Shortness of breath
  • chest pain
  • early fatigue
  • blackout
  • clouding of consciousness

Causes of Bradycardia

  • Old age: It occurs due to the decrease in the conductivity of the conduction tissue of the heart in advanced ages.
  • Vascular occlusion: It is due to damage to the conduction system after a heart attack.
  • Infection of heart tissue.
  • Congenital heart defects.
  • Underactive thyroid gland.
  • Electrolyte disturbances such as potassium and calcium.
  • Sleep apnea (OSAS).
  • Complications that may occur after heart surgery.
  • Medication or honey poisoning.

Diagnosis of bradycardia

To diagnose bradycardia, we need to know how many times the heart beats per minute. Definitive diagnosis is made with rhythm holter. Rhythm holter is a device that is attached to the patient and records the rhythm pattern experienced for 24 hours.

Bradycardia Treatment

Treatment of bradycardia is based on the cause. If there are underlying diseases such as hypothyroidism, sleep apnea, electrolyte disorder, these should be treated first; If it is seen due to drugs, the drugs should be changed. If there is a dangerous slowdown, it may be necessary to wear a pacemaker.

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