Heart Rhythm Disorders (Arrhythmias) Glossary of Terms

The following are health and medical definitions of terms that appear in the Heart Rhythm Disorders (Arrhythmias) article.

Ablation: Removal or excision. Ablation is usually carried out surgically. For example, su...

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Abnormal: Outside the expected norm, or uncharacteristic of a particular patient.

Adenosine: A nucleoside containing adenine as its base. Adenosine acts to dilate the coron...

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Anemia: The condition of having a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells or quantity ...

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Anxiety: A feeling of apprehension and fear, characterized by physical symptoms such as pa...

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Arrhythmia: An abnormal heart rhythm.

Artery: A vessel that carries blood high in oxygen content away from the heart to the far...

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Atria: The plural of atrium.

Atrial: Pertaining to the atria, the upper chambers of the heart, as in atrial fibrillatio...

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Atrial fibrillation: An abnormal and irregular heart rhythm in which electrical signals ar...

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Atrial flutter: Well-organized but overly rapid contractions of the atrium of the heart (u...

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Atrium: An entry chamber. On both sides of the heart, the atrium is the chamber that leads...

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Atropine: A drug, made from the belladonna plant, that is administered via injection, eye ...

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AV node: Atrioventricular node.

Blood pressure: The blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the arteries. It is...

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Bradycardia: A slow heart rate, usually defined as less than 60 beats per minute.

Brain: The portion of the central nervous system that is located within the skull. It func...

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Caffeine: A stimulant compound found naturally in coffee, tea, cocoa (chocolate), and kola...

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Calcium: A mineral found mainly in the hard part of bones, where it is stored. Calcium is ...

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Cardiac: Having to do with the heart.

Cardiologist: A physician who specializes in treating heart disorders.

Cardioversion: The conversion of a cardiac rhythm or electrical pattern to another, genera...

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Chest: The area of the body located between the neck and the abdomen. The chest contains t...

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Chest pain: Pain in the chest that can be a result of many things, including angina, heart...

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Cocaine: A substance derived from the leaves of the coca plant that is a bitter, addictive...

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Contraction: The tightening and shortening of a muscle.

Coronary artery disease: Impedance or blockage of one or more arteries that supply blood t...

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Cuts: Severed skin. Washing a cut or scrape with soap and water and keeping it clean and d...

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Defibrillation: The use of a carefully controlled electric shock, administered either thro...

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Defibrillator: A device that corrects an abnormal heart rhythm by delivering electrical sh...

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Diagnosis: 1 The nature of a disease; the identification of an illness. 2 A ...

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Discharge: 1.The flow of fluid from part of the body, such as from the nose or vag...

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ECG: Electrocardiogram.

Electrocardiogram: A recording of the electrical activity of the heart. Abbreviated ECG an...

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Emergency department: The department of a hospital responsible for the provision of medica...

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Fever: Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 degr...

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Fibrillation: In cardiology, an abnormal and erratic twitching of the heart muscle.

Flutter: Flutter is a rapid vibration or pulsation. The difference between flutter and fib...

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Heart: The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. ...

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Heart disease: Any disorder that affects the heart. Sometimes the term "heart disease" is ...

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Heart failure: Inability of the heart to keep up with the demands on it and, specifically...

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Heart rate: The number of heartbeats per unit of time, usually per minute. The heart rate ...

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Heart rhythm disorders: Abnormal rhythm of the heartbeat due to irregularities in transmis...

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High blood pressure: A repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg. Chro...

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Infection: The invasion and multiplication of microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, an...

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Mouth: 1. The upper opening of the digestive tract, beginning with the lips and con...

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Node: Literally a knot, a node is a collection of tissue. For example a lymph node, is a ...

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Pacemaker: A system that sends electrical impulses to the heart in order to set the hear...

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Pain: An unpleasant sensation that can range from mild, localized discomfort to agony. Pa...

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Palpitations: Unpleasant sensations of irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart. In ...

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Prescription: A physician's order for the preparation and administration of a drug or dev...

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Primary care: A patient's main source for regular medical care, ideally providing continui...

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Prognosis: The forecast of the probable outcome or course of a disease; the patient's chan...

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PVC: Premature ventricular contraction.

Random: Determined solely by chance.

Recurrence: The return of a sign, symptom, or disease after a remission. The reappearance ...

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Right atrium: The right upper chamber of the heart. The right atrium receives deoxygenated...

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SA node: The SA node (SA stands for sinoatrial) is one of the major elements in the cardi...

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Sensation: In medicine and physiology, sensation refers to the registration of an incoming...

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Shock: In medicine, a critical condition that is brought on by a sudden drop in blood flow...

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Shortness of breath: Difficulty in breathing. Medically referred to as dyspnea. Shortness ...

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Sick sinus syndrome: A condition that features symptoms including dizziness, confusion, fa...

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Sinus: 1. An air-filled cavity in a dense portion of a skull bone. The sinuses decr...

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Sinus bradycardia: A regular but unusually slow heart beat (50 beats/minute or less at res...

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Sinus tachycardia: Fast heartbeat (tachycardia) that occurs because of overly rapid firing...

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Sleep: The body's rest cycle.

Stress: In a medical or biological context stress is a physical, mental, or emotional fact...

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Supraventricular tachycardia: Abbreviated SVT. A regular, abnormally fast heart beat (tac...

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Surgery: The branch of medicine that employs operations in the treatment of disease or inj...

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Syncope: Partial or complete loss of consciousness with interruption of awareness of one...

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Syndrome: A combination of symptoms and signs that together represent a disease process.

Tachycardia: A rapid heart rate, usually defined as greater than 100 beats per minute.

Therapy: The treatment of disease. Therapy is synonymous with treatment.

Thyroid: 1. The thyroid gland. Also, pertaining to the thyroid gland. 2. A p...

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Tired: A feeling of a lessened capacity for work and reduced efficiency of accomplishment,...

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Tobacco: A South American herb (Nicotiana tabacum) whose leaves contain 2 to 8 percent nic...

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Ultrasound: High-frequency sound waves. Ultra-sound waves can be bounced off tissues by us...

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Valsalva: 1. The Valsalva maneuver in which a person tries to exhale forcibly with ...

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Ventricle: A chamber of an organ. For example, the four connected cavities in the central ...

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Ventricles: 1, The right ventricle and the left ventricle, the lower two chambers o...

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Ventricular: Pertaining to the ventricles, the lower chambers of the heart, as in ventricu...

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Ventricular arrhythmias: Abnormal rapid heart rhythms (arrhythmias) that originate in the ...

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Ventricular fibrillation: An abnormal and irregular heart rhythm in which there are rapid ...

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Ventricular tachycardia: An abnormal heart rhythm that is rapid and regular and that origi...

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