Bradycardia is a slow heart rate (less than 60 beats per minute). Bradycardia can be present in otherwise normal individuals and is common in well-trained athletes and in most people during deep sleep. If it presents no symptoms, it usually doesn’t require treatment. However, with symptoms such as fainting (syncope), chest pain (angina), heart failure and high blood pressure, it should be treated.
A Answers (8)
American Heart Association answered
Johns Hopkins Medicine answered
Bradycardia is a condition in which the heart beats less than 60 beats per minute. In some patients, who are otherwise healthy, the heartbeat may slow to less than 60 beats per minute while resting or sleeping. This usually causes no symptoms and does not require treatment. In other patients, bradycardia may occur due to age-related wear and tear on the heart or some other heart disease and may cause undue fatigue, lightheadedness, or fainting (syncope).
There are two basic types of bradycardia:
- Sick sinus syndrome occurs when the sinus node (the heart's own pacemaker) fails and does not reliably trigger heartbeats. This is very common in elderly persons, but may occur at any age.
- Heart block is a complete or partial interruption of the electrical impulses on their way to the ventricles and results in a slow, unreliable heartbeat. Heart block may be present at birth, may result from other types of heart disease (after a heart attack for example), or may be due to age-related wear and tear on the heart's electrical system.
Permanent pacemakers can be implanted to prevent patients from experiencing symptoms due to a slow heart beat.
Bradycardia is a slowed heart rate. It can cause people to faint or feel as if they will faint. They may also experience chest pain, fatigue, or shortness of breath. Aging, chemical imbalance, or low thyroid hormone levels can cause bradycardia. Uneven electrical flow across the heart can also be a factor.
Anthony Komaroff, MD, Internal Medicine, answeredBradycardia usually refers to a resting heart rate under 60 beats per minute. While that may be low for someone who doesn't exercise, it isn't unusual for someone who does. (Spanish bicyclist Miguel Indurain, for example, once had his resting heart rate measured at 29 beats per minute!)
Your cardiologist might want you to have a stress test to see how your heart accelerates with exertion. An appropriate increase indicates that the sinus node (the heart's natural pacemaker) is working properly, which decreases worries about a low heart rate. A poor increase in heart rate with exertion, whether the resting heart rate is slow or fast, suggests the sinus node is failing and a pacemaker may be needed.
Bradycardia is the medical term often used to describe a slow heart rhythm. In a slow arrhythmia, the heart signals do not fire as they should, causing the heart rate to slow down.
Having bradycardia means that your heart beats very slowly. For most people, a heart rate of 60 to 100 beats a minute while at rest is considered normal. If your heart beats less than 60 times a minute, it is slower than normal.
Sometimes bradycardia is normal. For example, healthy young adults and well-trained athletes often have resting heart rates of less than 60 beats a minute.
Bradycardia is abnormal when the heart's normal pacemaker does not work correctly or when the normal electrical system of the heart has been damaged. Abnormal bradycardia (also called bradyarrhythmia, sick sinus syndrome, or sinus node dysfunction) is an abnormally slow heart rate that is caused by certain medical conditions‚ including heart disease, hypothyroidism, and electrolyte imbalances‚Äîand some medicines. In severe forms of bradycardia, the heart beats so slowly that it does not pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. This can be life-threatening.
How bradycardia is treated depends on what is causing it. Treatment also depends on the symptoms. If bradycardia does not cause symptoms, it usually is not treated. A pacemaker is often needed to restore a normal heart rate.
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Douglas Severance, Family Medicine, answeredBradycardia refers to a slow heartbeat that is less than 60 beats per minute. If you are physically fit, you may have a slow heart rate at rest, and this is perfectly normal for you. But a heart rate lower than 60 beats a minute at rest may indicate a more serious problem for someone who is not physically fit.
Sometimes bradycardia means that the heart is not pumping enough blood through the body. Types of bradycardia include sick sinus syndrome and conduction blocks. With sick sinus syndrome, the sinus node, or the heart's natural pacemaker, isn't sending the electrical impulses properly. Sick sinus syndrome may be the result of scar tissue near the sinus node, which can result in stopping or disrupting the travel of the impulses. With a conduction block, the electrical impulses between the upper and lower sections of the heart may slow down or stop. Sometimes there are no symptoms when the impulse is blocked, yet other times you will experience bradycardia (slow heartbeat) or even skipped heartbeats.
Texas Cardiac Arrhythmia Institute answeredBradycardia is a heart-rhythm disturbance, or arrhythmia. An electrical signal in the heart causes a contraction of the heart muscle, which not only pumps blood but creates your heartbeat. A problem along this electrical pathway causes an abnormal heartbeat. Bradycardia refers to the heart beating too slowly, fewer than 60 beats per minute.