Health A-Z

Medical Content Created by the Faculty of the
Harvard Medical School

0SHARES

Symptoms

Symptoms of specific arrhythmias include:

  • Sinus node dysfunction - There may not be any symptoms, or it may cause dizziness, fainting and extreme fatigue.

  • Supraventricular tachyarrhythmias - These can cause palpitations (awareness of a rapid heartbeat), low blood pressure and fainting.

  • Atrial fibrillation - Sometimes, there are no symptoms. This can cause palpitations; fainting; dizziness; weakness; shortness of breath; and angina, which is chest pain caused by a reduced blood supply to the heart muscle. Some people with atrial fibrillation alternate between the irregular heartbeat and long periods of completely normal heartbeats.

  • A-V block or heart block - First-degree A-V block does not cause any symptoms. Second-degree A-V block causes an irregular pulse or slow pulse. Third-degree A-V block can cause a very slow heartbeat, dizziness and fainting.

  • VT - Non-sustained VT may not cause any symptoms or cause a mild fluttering in the chest. Sustained VT usually causes lightheadedness or loss of consciousness and can be lethal.

  • Ventricular fibrillation - This causes absent pulse, unconsciousness and death.

Page 2 of 9     Next Page:  Cardiac Arrhythmias Diagnosis
Click here to to redeem your SparkPoints
  You will earn 5 SparkPoints
From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

You can find more great health information on the Harvard Health Publications website.