Heart Arrhythmia – definition, symptoms and treatment

Definition of Arrhythmia Arrhythmia is irregularity or abnormality of the heart’s contractions. Arrhythmias can result from numerous causes including electrical disturbances of the heart’s pacing mechanisms, physical damage to the heart such as might occur with heart attack, interruptions of the heart’s blood supply that cause myocardial hypoxia (oxygen depletion), severe electrolyte imbalances, and medication side effects. Cocaine use can initiate sudden […]

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Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) is a congenital deformity in which an entanglement of arteries and veins forms.  Rather than connecting into capillary beds that form between them, the arteries and veins in an arteriovenous malformation connect directly to one another. Veins lack the structure to accommodate the pressure blood is under as it flows through […]

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Intermittent Claudication – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Intermittent Claudication Intermittent Claudication is pain in the lower legs that occurs with physical activity such as walking. Intermittent claudication is the primary symptom of peripheral vascular disease (pvd), which is atherosclerosis that affects the arteries of the legs. The atherosclerotic accumulations of PVD occlude (block) blood flow through the arteries, limiting their ability to respond to the increased […]

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Sick Sinus Syndrome – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Sick Sinus Syndrome Sick Sinus Syndrome is a collective term for arrhythmia disorders that arise from dysfunction of the sinoatrial (sa) node and the electrical conduction network within the heart. The SA node may stop functioning, or there may be a disruption in the pathway for the electrical impulses the SA node generates. Generally sick sinus […]

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Bundle Branch Block – Left / Right and ECG (EKG)

Definition of Bundle Branch Block Bundle Branch Block – An impediment, partial or complete, that prevents electrical impulses from traveling along the bundle of his or one of the bundle branches, right or left, in the heart. The bundle branches focus and intensify the pacing signals that originate in the sinoatrial (sa) node, concentrating them enough to stimulate […]

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Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD) – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD) Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD) – The consequential condition that results when coronary artery disease (cad) and other conditions that affect the heart’s blood supply deprive the heart of oxygen over an extended period of time. Ischemia is the medical term for a temporary interruption of blood flow; in ischemic heart disease (IHD), the interruptions are […]

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Stroke – Symptoms, Causes, Recovery and Treatment

Definition of Stroke An interruption of blood flow and oxygen supply to the brain, sometimes called a brain attack. Stroke strikes about 700,000 Americans each year. For two thirds of them the stroke is a second or subsequent stroke. About 85 percent of strokes are ischemic; they result from blockage of an arterial pathway in […]

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Cardiomyopathy – Definition, Types, Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Cardiomyopathy Cardiomyopathy is weakness and loss of pumping effectiveness of the heart, usually with changes to the structure of the heart and in particular the left ventricle. Cardiomyopathy is as likely to affect people under age 40 as people over age 60 and is a leading cause of heart failure resulting in heart transplantation. Genetic factors can […]

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Kawasaki Disease – In Children – Symptoms and Treatment

Definition of Kawasaki Disease Kawasaki disease is an acute condition affecting children that can weaken the coronary arteries and other cardiovascular structures, resulting in heart attack, aneurysm, or permanent damage. Kawasaki disease, also called mucocutaneous lymph node syndrome, comes on suddenly with rash, fever, conjunctivitis, and swollen lymph nodes (lymphadenopathy). Symptoms The characteristic symptom that raises suspicion the condition is more […]

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Tamponade, Cardiac – Definition

Definition of Tamponade Tamponade is a life-threatening compression of the heart that prevents it from expanding to fill with blood. Cardiac tamponade is most often a complication of pericarditis and develops when fluid rapidly accumulates within the layers of the percardium. The pericardium’s fibrous outer layer does not readily expand, which forces the fluid to press inward against the heart. Without […]

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