Restoring Your Normal Rhythm
Your heart works hard every day to keep your body moving. But when you have an irregular heartbeat, it can keep you from doing everything you want to. Cardiac electrophysiology at Saint Vincent Hospital can help you to determine the problem with your heart’s electrical system and find a treatment that can help.
Cardiac Electrophysiology Study: What to Expect
During an electrophysiology study, a small, plastic catheter is inserted through a vein in the groin and threaded to the heart. When the catheter has reached the heart, electrical signals are sent through the catheter in order to examine the electrical system in the heart.
Through the results of this study, your doctor will be able to determine the cause of your irregular heartbeat and find a treatment option right for you. We also use other related procedures to assess your heart, including resting or exercise electrocardiogram (ECG), Holter monitoring, echocardiography, chest X-rays and other diagnostic tools.
Saint Vincent’s electrophysiology team of doctors, nurse specialists, radiology technicians and support staff are ready to provide you with a range of electrophysiology procedures. Our services include:
- Cardiac ablation: This is a procedure done similarly to an electrophysiology test, but involves using a special catheter to deliver energy to the heart that eliminates certain irregular heart rhythms. We offer a comprehensive ablation program including radiofrequency and cryo-ablation procedures to meet patient needs.
- Cardioversion: This procedure corrects an irregular heart rhythm by applying a high-energy shock through special pads on the front and back of the chest wall. We provide medication to prevent experiencing any pain or discomfort.
- Implantable loop recorder: Implanted just below the skin on your chest, this device records heart rhythm episodes and can be used by the to record an episode when you’re experiencing symptoms. An implantable loop recorder is left in for a predetermined amount of time, often a year or more, before being removed.
- Pacemakers: Used to constantly monitor your heart rhythm, a pacemaker is implanted in your upper chest area and sends electrical impulses to the heart to maintain a normal heart rate.
- Implantable cardiac defibrillators: Slightly larger than a pacemaker, an implantable cardiac defibrillator sends electrical impulses to the heart when needed. This device continually monitors the heart and sends energy to correct a very fast rhythm.
For more information about electrophysiology and the procedures we offer at the Center for Heart and Vascular Services, or to schedule a consultation, call (508) 363-6162.