Arrhythmia Information and Herbal Supplements

 

  
ARRHYTHMIA

Definition

Arrhythmia is a disturbance in the rhythm of the heartbeat. Some arrhythmias are very mild and nothing to worry about (such as atrial fibrillation and premature ventricular contractions); others are potentially life threatening (such as ventricular tachycardia and severe ventricular arrythmias). In atrial fibrillation, the atria (the upper chambers of the heart) beat irregularly and very rapidly (up to 300 to 500 beats per minute).  This arrhythmia is minor because the atrium's job is simply to fill the ventricle—the lower chamber. In premature ventricular contractures, the heartbeat is irregular, as opposed to ventricular tachycardia, in which the beat is too fast (120 to 200 beats per minute). Other ventricular arrhythmias tend to be even more serious, such as ventricular fibrillation—rapid, uncontrolled, and ineffective contractions of the heart.

Signs and Symptoms

Many mild arrhythmias go unnoticed, or a person may feel the heart is beating out of pace or too rapidly (palpitations). In contrast, more serious arrythmias can represent a medical emergency and can be associated with a heart attack.

Causes

Arrhythmias are primarily the result of a disturbance in the electrical system that stimulates the heart to beat. They can also occur when areas of the heart muscles develop their own beat. Magnesium and potassium deficiencies are well-known nutritionally related causes of arrhythmia.

Natural Medicines¹

Kava Kava


¹The Pill Book Guide to Natural Medicines, Michael Murray N.D., 2002

Natural Medicines

Kava Kava


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