Supraventricular tachycardia occurs when you suddenly develop an abnormally fast heart rate. Though caffeine, lack of sleep, and alcohol can trigger supraventricular tachycardia, most people don’t experience an obvious trigger. At Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates, Akash Makkar, MD, and Mohamad Abdelrahman, MD, specialize in diagnosing and treating people with supraventricular tachycardia. To schedule an appointment, use the online booking feature or call one of the offices in Phoenix, Avondale, Tempe, Chandler, Sun City, Dewey, or Prescott Valley, Arizona, today.
Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) occurs when your heart beats faster than normal. A normal resting heart rate is 60-100 beats per minute. When you have SVT, your heart rate rises above 100 beats per minute.
Tachycardia is the medical term for a fast heart rate. Supraventricular refers to the fact that your abnormally fast heartbeat originates above the ventricles, the heart’s two lower chambers.
Supraventricular tachycardia typically starts and stops suddenly, lasting anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Common symptoms include:
When your SVT symptoms frequently appear or last a long time, you should seek immediate medical care.
After reviewing your symptoms and completing a physical exam, Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates performs an electrocardiogram (EKG).
They may run blood tests to determine if a medical condition such as hyperthyroidism, anemia, or an electrolyte imbalance is the cause of your SVT.
Additional tests, such as an echocardiogram, stress testing, and electrophysiology studies, may be needed to identify an underlying heart condition.
Your treatment is based on the type of supraventricular tachycardia, how frequently you have SVT episodes, and the severity of your symptoms.
You may need one of the following treatments:
Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates can teach you specific actions to slow down your heart rate and stop an episode of SVT.
You may need a short-acting medication that you can take at the start of an SVT episode. Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates may also prescribe beta-blockers, calcium channel blockers, or other medications that reduce the frequency of your episodes.
Cardioversion is an electric shock treatment to restore your heart’s normal rhythm. You may need cardioversion for severe SVT or when your heart rate doesn’t return to normal with vagal maneuvers or fast-acting medications.
Radiofrequency ablation, or heart ablation, is a minimally invasive procedure using a catheter threaded through your blood vessels to your heart.
Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates first uses the catheter to map the electrical activity in your heart and target the area triggering your SVT. They then use the catheter to transmit radiofrequency energy, creating a scar on the targeted tissues that stops the abnormal electrical signals.
If you experience a fast heart rate, or supraventricular tachycardia, call Arizona Heart Arrhythmia Associates or book an appointment online today for expert treatment.