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Ventricular Tachycardia
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What Is Ventricular Tachycardia?

Just like our brain, the heart is a vital body organ. Abnormal heart rate may be a cause of sudden death and heart strokes. A healthy heart beats 72 times in a minute. But what if the heart beats more than 100 times in a minute? It means you are suffering from ventricular tachycardia heart disorder. This kind of fast heart rate is often seen in people already suffering from heart diseases. One should never take ventricular tachycardia lightly, as it may lead to death if the right treatment is not taken at the right time.

Ventricular Tachycardia

Let us dig deeper to understand all about the various tachycardia symptoms and identify the most effective ventricular tachycardia treatment options.

What is Ventricular Tachycardia?

Ventricular Tachycardia, also referred to as VT, is a heart disorder, where your heart beats exceptionally faster than normal. This kind of problem is more common in people suffering from other heart disorders like cardiomyopathy and coronary artery disease. Experts claim that a person suffering from VT is a person whose heart beats more than 100 times in a minute as compared to a normal person, whose heart beats about 72 times in a minute. If left untreated, VT can be fatal, so getting a timely ventricular tachycardia treatment after detecting the right tachycardia symptoms is very crucial.

Causes of Ventricular Tachycardia

Now, let us acquaint you with some of the common causes of ventricular tachycardia. Till now, the experts have not figured out an exact cause of VT, but some factors that may lead to such a health condition are:

1. Cardiomyopathy

It is a kind of heart disease that tends to weaken your heart muscles. 

2. Heart Failure

One of the major reasons for a heart attack is a weak heart, which may lead to VT. 

3. Electrolyte Abnormalities

On the other hand, an imbalance of the electrolytes like potassium, magnesium, and so on, may lead to ventricular tachycardia. 

4. Acid-Base Abnormalities

Besides, when your blood pH is either too acidic or not acidic at all, or maybe too alkaline, may lead to a VT condition. 

5. Myocarditis

This type of heart condition takes place due to inflammation of heart muscles after an infection. 

6. Congenital Coronary Artery Anomalies

Counted as one of the rarest heart conditions, congenital coronary artery anomalies is a condition where a person is born with a coronary artery located in an abnormal place. 

7. Ischemic Heart Disease

Yet another cause of VT could be ischemic heart disease, which results due to narrowing of heart arteries.

8. Structural Heart Disease

This is another kind of heart disease caused due to an infection or a previous heart attack. 

9. Long QT Syndrome

This could be another cause of VT, where the normal electrical activity of your heart gets affected either due to heredity or due to acquired symptoms.

Ventricular Tachycardia Symptoms

In most cases, a person is not able to detect any symptoms of Ventricular Tachycardia. So, here is a list of Ventricular Tachycardia symptoms to note:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest Pain
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Fatigue
  • Heart Palpitations
  • Tightness in the Neck
  • Cardiac Arrest

 

Ventricular Tachycardia Treatment

The objection to any ventricular tachycardia treatment is to normalize your heart rhythm and avoid further damage to the body due to heart failure. Some of the common treatments prescribed by doctors for VT are:

1. Radiofrequency Ablation

 These are radioactive electrical currents to destroy the abnormal tissues that cause abnormally faster heartbeats. 

2. Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator

This is a device that is placed inside the chest and sometimes in the abdomen to manage abnormal heartbeats. This device tends to give a shock every time it detects an abnormal heartbeat. 

3. Antiarrhythmic Medication

 Another common treatment for VT is these antiarrhythmic medical drugs that slow down a fast-pacing heart rate. These help to fill the ventricles with blood to slow down the heart rhythm. 

4. Beta-Blockers

 Beta-blockers are the drugs that tend to lower the force as well as the speed of your heartbeat. These drugs are also helpful in lowering high blood pressure. 

Besides, in case of an emergency, a VT patient must be given any of the following treatments to avoid any mishappening:

1. CPR

2. Electrical Defibrillation

3.  Antiarrhythmic Medication

The Bottom Line

In a nutshell, ventricular tachycardia is not a health condition that should be ignored, as, within no time, it may turn fatal. One must be alert enough to know the tachycardia symptoms and at once consult a doctor to normalize the faster heart rhythm. Besides, try to continue with the treatment, even when your heart is beating normally, to avoid its recurrence in the future. 

FAQs

Does ventricular tachycardia damage the heart?

Although ventricular tachycardia may not damage your heart, if left untreated, it may soon lead to serious health disorders like heart failure, heart stroke, and even death due to a cardiac attack. 

What happens if you have ventricular tachycardia?

Initially, Ventricular tachycardia starts with the lower chambers of the heart called ventricles. This then may lead to lower blood pressure and a feeling of fainting within a few seconds. 

What is the most common cause of ventricular tachycardia?

Knowing the exact cause of ventricular tachycardia is difficult, but in most cases, it takes place due to pre-existing heart disease. People suffering from myocarditis, congenital heart defect, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and a previous heart attack are more prone to suffer from VT. 

What is the best treatment for ventricular tachycardia?

The best treatment for ventricular tachycardia is an antiarrhythmic drug to slow down the heart rate. In case of an emergency, a person should be given CPR or electrical defibrillation. 

Does a pacemaker help in ventricular tachycardia?

Yes, in some cases an overdrive pacing done through a pacemaker may help to relieve symptoms of ventricular tachycardia. Besides, other anti-tachycardia devices may also prove beneficial to treat VT in many cases. 

Can tachycardia be cured?

Symptoms of ventricular tachycardia don’t go away on their own. You will need medical support and also need to make some changes in your lifestyle. A combination of medication and a healthy lifestyle may help to get rid of VT symptoms. 

What is the survival rate of ventricular tachycardia?

Ventricular tachycardia is a serious heart disorder that may be fatal. However, the sudden death mortality rate due to VT is 30% in a time duration of 2 years. This rate is higher in patients who are suffering from non-sustained VT and ischemic cardiomyopathy. 

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