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All about heart block first degree heart block second degree heart block third degree or complete heart block causes of heart block symptoms of heart block diagnosis of heart block treatments for heart block arrhythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) {bundle branch block cardiac arrhythmia atrial fibrillation atrial flutter supraventricular tachycardia sick sinus syndrome ventricular arrhythmias ventricular tachycardia ventricular fibrillation heart block Brugada syndrome long QT syndrome short QT syndrome Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome (WPW syndrome)}

What're the treatments for heart block?

The most important aspect of managing someone who has heart block is whether or not the person needs a permanent cardiac pacemaker implanted. Anyone who has symptoms associated with second or third-degree heart block should have a permanent pacemaker implanted.

First-degree heart block requires no treatment even when it is caused by heart disease. Some people with second-degree heart block require an artificial pacemaker. Almost all people with third-degree heart block require an artificial pacemaker. A temporary pacemaker may be used in an emergency until a permanent one can be implanted. Most people need an artificial pacemaker for the rest of their lives, although heart rhythm may return to normal if the cause of the heart block resolves - for example, after recovery from a heart attack.

There are other specialised circumstances in which a pacemaker may be required, but full investigation is needed by a specialist in this field before any decision can be made. A pacemaker is an electronic device which is designed to monitor the heart rhythm and stimulate the heart beat in one or more chambers when the heart beat slows. The pacemaker operates according to programmed instructions to stimulate the heart at a rate and in a sequence that is appropriate for a particular medical condition. The instruction the pacemaker follows are as directed by the patient's physician and can be changed after implantation by using a device called a programmer which communicates with a pacemaker using radio-telemetry.

More information on heart block

What is heart block? - Heart block is a disorder of the heartbeat. Heart block is common in elderly people as their hearts have undergone degenerative changes.
What's first degree heart block? - First-degree heart block, or first-degree AV block, is when the electrical impulse moves through the AV node more slowly than normal.
What's second degree heart block? - Second degree heart block is a disease of the electrical conduction system of the heart. There are two distinct types of second degree heart block.
What's third degree or complete heart block? - Third degree heart block, also known as complete heart block, is a disease of the electrical system of the heart.
What causes heart block? - Heart block has a variety of causes. It can sometimes be a result of a congenital defect. It can also occur after a heart attack or as a result of myocarditis.
What are the symptoms of heart block? - The main symptom associated with heart block is fainting (syncope). Second degree heart block may not cause symptoms.
How is heart block diagnosed? - Heart blocks can be diagnosed with a test called an electrocardiogram (ECG), which measures the heart's electrical activity.
What're the treatments for heart block? - First-degree heart block requires no treatment even when it is caused by heart disease. A temporary pacemaker may be used in an emergency.
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All information is intended for reference only. Please consult your physician for accurate medical advices and treatment. Copyright 2005, health-cares.net, all rights reserved. Last update: July 18, 2005