Tachycardia

Also known as: ventricular tachycardia, rapid heartbeat

What is tachycardia?

Tachycardia is the medical term for a rapid heartbeat. This can impact the upper chambers of the heart, the lower chambers of the heart or both. It varies in severity and can lead to complications in many instances if left untreated.

What causes tachycardia?

The condition occurs due to an electrical problem with the heart. This can occur because of certain medical conditions or the use of some medications. Using caffeine, nicotine, alcohol or other drugs can increase the risk.

What are the symptoms of tachycardia?

Tachycardia typically produces a rapid heartbeat that can be steady or irregular depending on the type that is present. Shortness of breath, dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting, chest pain or tightness and heart palpitations are other common symptoms.

What are tachycardia care options?

Individuals can be taught physical movements called vagal maneuvers that can help to manage certain types of tachycardia. Some medications, medical procedures or surgeries can also treat the heart and reduce the chances of tachycardia occurring.


Reviewed by: Anthony F. Rossi, MD

This page was last updated on: 6/12/2018 2:18:48 PM

From the Newsdesk

Infant flown from Puerto Rico days after Hurricane Maria for Lifesaving Surgery
Naialee Perez had just given birth to her first child, a baby boy named Liam, when a category five hurricane was making its way towards her hometown in the island of Puerto Rico. Liam was on a ventilator and undergoing treatment for a congenital heart defect in Hospital del Niño in San Juan while those on the island prepared for what would become one of the most catastrophic hurricanes in its history.
August Patient of the Month: Luife
While he was still inside his mother’s womb, Luife was diagnosed with transposition of the great arteries, a congenital heart defect. Shortly after birth, Luife was taken by ambulance to the cardiac team at Nicklaus Children’s. The pediatric cardiology team took Luife’s heart apart, piece by delicate piece, and successfully, put it back together. Today, Luife is a healthy, active and outgoing 8-year-old boy who wears his “Scar of Honor” with pride.