Cardioversion converts an irregular heart rhythm (e.g., atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter) to a normal heart rhythm by applying high energy shock through special pads applied to the front and back of the chest wall. Tilt Table Test (HUT)
is performed to reproduce fainting spells in people that may be prone to these episodes (syncope). The test is performed with the patient lying on a special tilting table at a 70 degree angle for about 30 minutes. The patient's heart rhythm and vital signs are monitored and recorded throughout the procedure. Oral medications may or may not be given.
Implantable Loop Recorder is a small device (the size of a pack of gum) which is implanted just below the skin of the patient's chest. The device is pre-set to record heart rhythm episodes and the patient is able to use a remote button to prompt the device to record an episode while the patient is experiencing symptoms (e.g., dizziness, palpitations). The device is left in for a pre-determined period of time (a year or more) and then surgically removed.
Pacemakers are devices that constantly monitor heart rhythms. Pacemakers are implanted into the upper chest area and work by sending small electrical impulses to the heart muscle to maintain a normal heart rate. The devices
are approximately the size of a silver dollar and are attached to small wires which carry the electrical signals to the heart muscle.
Implantable Cardiac Defibrillators (ICDs) are devices (slightly larger than a pacemaker) that are implanted into the upper chest area and work to send small electrical impulses to the heart muscle when needed. The defibrillator
constantly monitors the heart rhythm and when it detects a very fast rhythm it delivers energy to the heart muscle to restore a slower normal heart rhythm.
Patients who have a Loop Recorder, Pacemaker, ICD or CRT device implanted can expect a quick recovery and return to an active lifestyle. Most patients have fewer symptoms, greater activity tolerance and a better quality of life.
Electrophysiology Testing (EP Test) studies the conduction or electrical system of the heart by recording electrical activity from within the heart. The physician inserts small wires through a large vein in the patient's upper thigh and
guided to the patient's heart. The Electrophysiologist is able to detect and study heart rhythm disturbances (arrhythmias) using specialized imaging and mapping equipment.
Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation (RFCA) is a procedure, similar to an EP Test, that involves using a specialized catheter to deliver energy to an area of the heart tissue in order to eliminate irregular heart rhythms. Both the EP Test
and RFCA are performed by an Electrophysiologist and arrhythmia nurse specialist.