Men and women who are advised by their doctors to take part in cardiac monitoring while going about their daily activities likely feel anxious about their health. Physicians do not recommend wearing monitoring electrodes without a good reason. Patients should try to remain as calm and relaxed as possible, understanding that the doctor wants to make a definitive diagnosis of any potential problems.
Abnormal Heart Rhythms
Doctors may tell patients to wear monitoring electrodes for a few days or even several weeks, depending on the circumstances. They believe the patient may have an abnormal heart rhythm because of symptoms being reported.
An abnormal heart rhythm is medically known as arrhythmia. The term is used to describe irregular heart rhythms or a heart that beats unusually slowly or quickly. Palpitations may occur, or the person may have a sensation of fluttering in the chest. There may be shortness of breath. The doctor may suspect arrhythmia if the patient has reported unexplained symptoms like feeling very light-headed or dizzy at times.
If the arrhythmia only happens occasionally, being monitored in the medical setting for a relatively short time may not detect the condition. Physicians need to make an accurate diagnosis before they can prescribe the appropriate treatment.
Many heart conditions respond effectively to daily medication. Doctors may prescribe blood-thinning medicine that significantly reduces the risk of stroke in patients with irregular heartbeats. A patient with an abnormally slow heartbeat may feel fatigued most of the time and thus could benefit from stimulant medication.