The human heart is an amazing organ. Its cells independently produce impulses, under the influence of which a heartbeat occurs. They come from the sinus node of muscle fibers, which makes the heart rhythm unchanged. Regular heartbeat allows blood to move throughout the body, but if there is a rhythm failure, then this phenomenon is called arrhythmia. Normally, the sinus node generates a pulse frequency of 60 to 90 beats per minute. Cardiac arrhythmias are interruptions in his work that generate an impulse frequency above or below normal.
What is cardiac arrhythmia and how does it manifest
When a healthy heart beats, a person does not feel it. If his emotional background is increased or after strong physical exertion, the frequency of contractions increases, this is considered a normal body reaction to stimuli. Arrhythmia is a pathology that occurs against the background of diseases such as:
- thyroid disease;
- after myocardial infarction;
- coronary artery disease;
- acquired or congenital heart disease;
- during pregnancy.
With arrhythmia, a person hears the beat of his heart. Patients often complain of interruptions or fading when they feel that the "motor" is about to stop. A rare rhythm (below 40 beats per minute) or frequent (above 160) leads to an insufficient supply of oxygen to the brain, so pathology is often accompanied by weakness, dizziness, headache and even fainting. Doctors consider nervous stress to be the main reason for the irregular heartbeat.
Causes of heart rhythm disturbance
The causes of pathology are diverse. It can be menopausal changes in the body of a woman, thyroid gland, adrenal gland pathology or imbalance of potassium, calcium or sodium. Overuse of alcohol, drugs, and smoking leads to arrhythmias. If interruptions in heart rate are caused by emotional depression, then the problem often goes away quickly and without consequences. But if the symptoms appear too often or do not go away for a long time, then this is a serious reason to visit a doctor.
Types and symptoms
In medical practice, there are more than a dozen varieties of this pathology. Arrhythmia of different types differs in the mechanism of occurrence, manifestation, nature of the course of the disease. Often in healthy people, sinus tachycardia is observed, in which there is an acceleration of the heart rhythm. It practically does not occur in serious heart diseases.
If a low heart rate is observed, below 55 per minute, this is a sign of bradycardia. The main symptoms are:
- a sharp breakdown;
- blood pressure differences;
- premature fatigue;
- frequent dizziness.
The therapist determines the presence of bradycardia on the basis of an electrocardiogram: rhythm disturbances are clearly visible on the tape. The doctor determines the frequency and cause of the symptoms, their severity, prescription, the age of the patient also plays a big role. The causes of bradycardia are various diseases: atherosclerosis, post-infarction scars, myocarditis and other diseases. Endocrine diseases, severe infections, or high blood pressure can slow down the heart rate. To get rid of bradycardia, medication is usually given.
Tachycardia is called heart palpitations, which has a different origin. The frequency of contractions sometimes reaches 100 beats per minute. Depending on the cause of the occurrence, tachycardia is pathological and physiological. If the physiological form of the disease occurs in a healthy person as a result of acute reactions to external factors, then pathological tachycardia is a mandatory presence of some kind of heart disease.
The danger of tachycardia is that it reduces the amount of blood ejected, so the blood supply to the ventricles decreases. This affects blood pressure, and internal organs are not adequately supplied with blood. Prolonged tachycardia reduces the effectiveness of the heart. The main symptoms of the disease:
- increased heart rate;
- darkening in the eyes;
- chest pain
- loss of consciousness.
A common type of cardiac arrhythmia, when it is reduced late or by separate cameras, is extrasystole. Often there is a ventricular variety of this type of arrhythmia, which happens both in patients and in healthy people. The main reason for such malfunctions in the heart is stress or overwork, but extrasystole from exposure to alcohol, caffeine, tobacco and other stimulants is often observed. Patients complain of too strong blows, as well as the feeling of a complete stop.
Symptoms of extrasystole also include:
- lack of air;
- pallor of the skin.
Treatment requires the use of drugs. In half the cases, extrasystole is associated not with heart diseases, but with autonomic or psychoemotional disorders, an electrolyte balance disorder, the genitourinary system, reflex effects from the gastrointestinal tract, or prolonged use of any medications.
Atrial fibrillation, twitching or frequent atrial contraction is accompanied by atrial fibrillation. Sometimes the heart rate reaches 350-600 beats per minute. If atrial fibrillation lasts more than 48 hours, then the risk of ischemic stroke and blood clots increases. Doctors distinguish a chronic and transient form of this disease. Chronic atrial fibrillation lasts more than 7 days, and the transient form is recurrent.
The manifestation of symptoms depends on the state of the valve apparatus, myocardium, and the characteristics of the human psyche. Usually, at the beginning, such an arrhythmia occurs paroxysmally, and the frequency and duration of seizures are individual. In some patients, after several seizures, a chronic form is established, in others, very rare short deteriorations are observed, which do not progress. If you have atrial fibrillation, watch the video below, where Dr. Myasnikov tells what to do when a disease occurs:
When an impulse passes through a conducting system, it sometimes encounters an obstacle, in connection with which there is a delay in the rhythm or it moves to the lower sections. In the first version, the blockade is called incomplete, and in the second - complete. Heart block is congenital or acquired. With congenital blockade, if the rhythm ranges from 50 to 60 beats per minute, a person does not need treatment, but only preventive measures are needed. With an acquired blockade, doctors prescribe medications that improve the metabolism of potassium in the heart system.
Ways of treatment -
Therapy of arrhythmia depends on the cause of the disease, the physiological processes of the body and the age of the patient. Doctors do not always choose medication, because taking a large number of drugs can adversely affect the conductive system. The following treatments are available for the disease:
- special diet;
- folk ways;
- drugs (tablets, injections);
- breathing exercises;
- surgical intervention (cauterization of heart tissue).
Diet and special diet
Disruptions in the heart rhythm often occur with a lack of potassium in the body, therefore, products containing this trace element are useful for tachycardia or any other type of arrhythmia. These include: bananas, parsley, dried fruits, blackcurrant, cabbage, potatoes and sunflower seeds. Emphasis is also placed on products containing calcium: fish, seafood, nuts, dairy products, seeds, beets, corn. Doctors also recommend eating yeast, peas, cucumbers, spinach, bran, buckwheat, beans, which contain a lot of magnesium, for arrhythmias.
All products should be cooked in the oven, steamed or boiled. It is strictly forbidden to fry food. You should severely limit your sugar intake and give up:
- cream confectionery;
- smoked meats, pickles;
- pickles, canned food;
- spicy seasonings;
- refractory cheeses;
- fatty meats;
- alcohol in any form.
In order for the diet to bring the patient maximum relief, you should add to the lifestyle a simple physical education with gentle exercises that will develop the heart muscle. It is important to drink at least 1.5 liters of boiled and non-carbonated water during the day, and also sometimes spend fasting days on which it is allowed to drink a rosehip broth or water without gas.
Folk remedies: herbs and fees
Violation of the rhythm and heart rate is successfully treated with folk remedies. Decoctions of herbs will help the heart, if you adhere to a healthy lifestyle: eat right, monitor weight and exercise. Here are the herbs that help with any type of arrhythmia:
- Valerian officinalis root (2 parts), yarrow (1 part), motherwort herb (2 parts), ordinary anise (1 part). Chop collection, 1 tbsp. pour 200 ml of boiled water, insist 30 minutes, take 1/3 cup 3 times daily.
- Cardiac motherwort herb (40 g), Melissa officinalis (40 g), buckwheat (40 g). The collection is mixed, crushed, 2 tsp. pour into enameled dishes and pour 200 ml of boiled water. Infuse the broth to complete cooling, and then squeeze, strain, bring water to its original volume and drink during the day in small sips. This remedy is taken for 2 weeks, then a break is made for 7 days, and again you need to drink 2 weeks daily.
- Flowers of common wormwood, sainfoin, black currant (2 parts each), roots of tea penny (1 part). Everything is mixed, crushed, 2 tsp. 200 ml of boiled water are poured into the raw materials, the collection is infused in a thermos for 12 hours. Infusion is taken in small sips during the day. Course: 7 days, a break of 4 days, and then again 7 days.
- Chop the flowers of hawthorn (1 tablespoon), pour 200 ml of boiled water, cover, over low heat, evaporate to half the volume. Cool, drink with any type of arrhythmia daily for 1 tsp. 3 times before meals for 3 months.
Therapeutic measures are also aimed at improving heart rhythm. Medicines are divided into groups, and stand alone means that are used to relieve an acute attack. Groups of antiarrhythmic drugs:
- Sodium channel blockers that stabilize cell membranes, reducing their excitability and the period of heart contractions. These include lidocaine, Novocaine and all modern derivatives.
- Beta blockers. They reduce the strength and frequency of contractions of the heart, eliminating exciting mediators. These include non-selective drugs, for example, Propranolol, Carvedilol and cardioselective - Atenolol, Metoprolol, Bisoprolol.
- Potassium channel blockers, which increase the time when the myocardium of the heart does not give any reaction to stimulating stimuli. These drugs (Sotogeksal, Kordaron) are widely used in the treatment of atrial fibrillation.
- Calcium channel blockers (Diltiazem, Veraparmil). They disrupt ion transport, in which there is a contraction of the muscles of the heart.
Find out what tachycardia is - symptoms and treatment of the disease at home.
Breathing exercises can saturate blood vessels with oxygen, improve blood circulation, and are useful for any type of arrhythmia, especially in the early stages of the disease. Such exercises improve the natural respiratory process, control the movement of the diaphragm and the abdominal wall. Gymnastics forms rational abdominal breathing instead of chest breathing, in which air circulates, regardless of breathing movements. An approximate set of daily breathing exercises for any arrhythmia:
- Standing, standing, small semi-squat, legs apart, head straight, right arm extended to the side. The left nostril is clamped with a free hand, and a uniform inhalation is made through the right, while pulling the right hand to the nose. At the end of the inhalation, the right hand closes the right nostril, and a slow exhalation is done through the left, which by this time needs to be released.
- Standing sitting on a chair. Slow breath through the right nostril, and after a quick exhale through the left. Repeat several times in both sequences.
- Deep slow breath through both nostrils, breath holding, and then slow exhalation.
- A very slow breath through the mouth: lips with a tube, imitation of air intake through a straw, breath holding, and then the same very slow exhale.
What is the disease dangerous: possible consequences
With cardiac arrhythmias in the aorta, the volume of blood decreases, so a lack of oxygen is formed in the brain. A person feels a sharp dizziness, in which he sometimes faints. And if at this time he works at height, drives a car or crosses the roadway with a child? The consequences of heart failures are sad. Some types of pathology lead to the development of acute heart failure, an attack of angina pectoris, pulmonary edema, when the patient requires urgent surgery.
Every sixth stroke occurs after the diagnosis of cardiac arrhythmia. Especially in patients with chronic extrasystole, when the absence of atrial contraction provokes stagnation of blood or the formation of clots that move with blood through the vessels and stop, clogging them. Often the target of such a blood clot is the brain, resulting in a stroke.
Given the degree of danger of the disease, disease prevention includes a large range of activities conducted under the supervision of a physician. First of all, when detecting heart rhythm disturbances, you need to reduce the effect on the body of stress, tobacco and alcohol. No less importance should be given to the diet, introducing foods rich in vitamins and minerals into the diet. On the recommendation of a doctor, drug prophylaxis should be given.
An integral part of preventive measures for all types of arrhythmias is dosed physical activity: walking, swimming, breathing exercises, daily morning warm-ups. After consulting a doctor, more active sports are allowed in the complex of physical activity: walking or skiing, training on cardiovascular machines or a treadmill. Equally important is control over weight and blood pressure, as well as the fight against overwork and stress.Attention! The information presented in the article is for guidance only. Materials of the article do not call for independent treatment. Only a qualified doctor can make a diagnosis and give recommendations for treatment based on the individual characteristics of a particular patient.