Also known as: V-Tach, VT, cardiac arrhythmia, irregular heartbeat
What is ventricular tachycardia?
Ventricular tachycardia is the medical term for a rapid heartbeat that affects the ventricles, or the lower chambers of the heart. It varies in severity and can lead to complications in many instances if left untreated.
What causes ventricular 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 ventricular tachycardia?
Ventricular 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 ventricular tachycardia care options?
Medications can help to manage ventricular tachycardia in some instances. Other forms of ventricular tachycardia require medical procedures, surgery or the implantation of devices to help regulate the heartbeat.
Reviewed by: Anthony F. Rossi, MD
This page was last updated on: 6/21/2019 2:20:00 AM
The Heart Program at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital provides electrocardiogram (EKG) screenings to children and young adults in the community at no cost. The use of an EKG is critical to help diagnose asymptomatic heart defects that may not otherwise be detected in a routine physical exam. Learn more.