Its been a tough 2011 and the start of 2012 is no good as well. But still faith and hope that all goes well as we go through the year. My son has been diagnosed with this heart disorder that I couldn't even spill right... Supraventricular Tachycardia.
Well for those who are suffering or have someone that is enduring the same malady, here's some information that might be of help to you.
Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) is a general term that refers to any rapid heart rhythm originating above the ventricular tissue. Supraventricular tachycardias can be contrasted to the potentially more dangerous ventricular tachycardias - rapid rhythms that originate within the ventricular tissue. Although technically an SVT can be due to any supraventricular cause, the term is often used by clinicians to refer to one specific cause of SVT, namely Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT) which is due to AV nodal reentrant tachycardia.
Supraventricular Tachycardia Causes
Paroxysmal, or sporadic, supraventricular tachycardia usually occurs without other symptoms. However, it may be associated with a number of medical conditions, such as the following:
- Hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis)
- Heart failure
- Thyroid disease
- Chronic lung disease
- Pulmonary emboli, or blood clots migrating into the lung arteries from elsewhere in the body
- Certain drugs and social habits
- Cocaine abuse
- Alcohol abuse
- Drinking too much caffeine in coffee, tea, or soft drinks
- Emotional stress
Structural abnormalities, such as Wolff Parkinson White syndrome, in which extra electrical tissue sets up abnormal electrical circuits
Supraventricular tachycardia may also be a side effect of medications such as digitalis, asthma medications, or cold remedies.
In some cases, the cause of supraventricular tachycardia is unknown.
Supraventricular Tachycardia Symptoms
Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT) can cause a number of symptoms, depending on your overall health and how fast your heart is beating. People with heart damage or other coexisting medical problems experience a greater degree of discomfort and complications than those who are healthy. Some people have no symptoms at all.
Symptoms can come on suddenly and may go away by themselves. They can last a few minutes or as long as 1-2 days. The rapid beating of the heart during PSVT can make your heart a less effective pump so that your body organs do not receive enough blood to work normally. The following symptoms are typical with a rapid pulse of 140-250 beats per minute:
- Palpitations - The sensation of your heart pounding in your chest
- Dizziness, or light-headedness (near-faint), or fainting
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain or tightness
When to Seek Medical Care
Supraventricular tachycardia is generally not life threatening unless you have other heart disorders. Call your health care provider if any of the following conditions occur:
- The episode of rapid heartbeat or palpitations is your first, and the symptoms last longer than a few seconds to a minute or two.
- You have had previous episodes of supraventricular tachycardia, and the current episode does not go away with vagal maneuvers (coughing, deep breathing, or muscle tensing).
- The following conditions warrant a visit to the nearest hospital emergency department. Do not drive yourself to the hospital. Call 911 for emergency help.
- You have rapid heartbeat and feel dizzy or faint.
- You have rapid heartbeat with chest pain.
- You feel short of breath with rapid heartbeat.