What causes a heart palpitation?

Johns Hopkins Medicine
Administration
Heart palpitations describe the experience of feeling as though the heart is pounding or racing, that the heartbeat is irregular or rapid or that the heart is skipping beats. Palpitations can be felt in the chest, throat and neck.
Palpitations can be caused by factors including:
• Overexertion or exercise
• Stress
• Caffeine, alcohol, tobacco or diet pills
• Fever
• Overactive thyroid
• Anemia
• Hormone changes associated with menstruation, pregnancy or menopause
• Low blood pressure
• Heart disease or heart valve abnormalities
• Medications such as thyroid pills, cold medicines, asthma drugs, beta blockers for high blood pressure
To manage palpitations, the underlying cause must be treated. Lifestyle changes that include a heart-healthy diet and regular exercise may be recommended. Avoiding stimulants such as caffeine or nicotine may also reduce the occurrence of palpitations.
In some cases, your doctor may also prescribe medication.

Continue Learning about Heart and Circulatory System

Heart and Circulatory System

Heart and Circulatory System

Your circulatory system is made up of your heart and three main types of blood vessels -- arteries, veins and capillaries. Your heart is at the center of the system, acting as a pump to distribute nutrient- and oxygen-rich blood t...

hrough your body; it then takes away carbon dioxide and other waste your body doesn't need. Signs of poor circulation include cold hands and feet, numbness, dizziness, migraines, varicose veins and pain in your feet or legs. Untreated, poor circulation can lead to stroke, high blood pressure, kidney damage and other diseases. Learn more about your heart and circulatory system with expert advice from Sharecare.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.