Heart Rhythm Disorders
Leader in Cardiac Services |
Diagnosing Heart Rhythm Disease |
Heart Rhythm Disease Treatment |
Leader in Cardiac Services
Anderson continues to be the leader in cardiac services by offering the area’s only state-of-the-art electrophysiology lab, staffed by Meridian’s only catheter ablation expert. Attila Roka, MD, PhD, who trained at the teaching hospitals of Yale and Harvard Universities, is the first cardiologist in our area to perform catheter ablation, the only cardiac procedure that can be correctly called curative for certain heart rhythm disorders. To make appointments with Dr. Roka,
Attila Roka, MD, PhD
Diagnosing Heart Rhythm Disease
Anderson’s Heart Rhythm Disease team includes Dr. Roka, as well as board-certified physicians, and specially trained nurses and technicians. They use leading-edge technology to pinpoint any cardiac arrhythmia that might be causing weakness, fatigue, palpitations, low blood pressure, dizziness or fainting.
Advanced tests include:
- Treadmill stress test — a noninvasive test with external monitors that identify how your heart works during exertion, while walking or running on a treadmill.
- Nuclear stress test — a mildly radioactive substance shows how blood flows through your heart during exertion.
- Echocardiography stress test — using the same non-invasive monitoring as a treadmill stress test, these tests also include ultrasound images to visualize the heart and aid in the diagnosis.
- Electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) — an EKG measures the heart’s electrical function and rhythm during normal activity. The staff is proficient at using a 12-lead EKG.
- Implantable or at-home ECG (Holter, event monitor) — an ECG device takes readings from a minimum of 24 hours up to 30 days or longer for implantable devices, because not all arrhythmias occur at the doctor’s office.
- Angiogram (or arteriogram) — an X-ray of the heart and arteries uses contrast dye to identify blockages or muscle damage.
- Tilt Table Testing — this noninvasive test aids in the diagnosis of heart rhythm problems associated with fainting, in which the heart may beat too slowly.
- Electrophysiology Study (EPS) — an invasive procedure is sometimes required to make an accurate diagnosis of a heart-rhythm issue. Advanced technology is placed inside the heart to determine electrical patterns and guide further treatment.
Heart Rhythm Disease Treatment
There are many different types of cardiac rhythm disorders and a wide range of treatments — from changing your lifestyle to surgical intervention. At Anderson Regional Heart Center, you’ll feel comfortable knowing that a competent and caring staff successfully treats heart rhythm disorders on a daily basis. Treatments may include:
- Lifestyle modification — stress, caffeine and alcohol can promote arrhythmia. Your doctor may recommend a change in diet or stress-reduction measures.
- Medication — depending on the type of arrhythmia, your general health and the medications you are currently taking, your doctor may prescribe medication to alleviate your heart rhythm symptoms and avoid any unintended consequences.
- Cardioversion — very fast arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation (AFib) or supraventricular tachycardia can be alleviated through an electrical shock delivered by a defibrillator.
- Ablation — using very high frequency waves, the tissue causing the arrhythmia can be destroyed by heat or freezing, via a catheter in a minimally-invasive procedure.
- Pacemaker — implanted under the skin, a pacemaker sends electrical signals to start or regulate a too-slow heartbeat.
- Implantable cardioverter defibrillator — similar to a pacemaker, the ICD is implanted under the skin, where it can deliver a small electrical shock to reset the heart in case of a life-threatening heart rhythm.
- Surgery —in this major medical procedure the chest is opened and the heart tissue causing the arrhythmia is scarred or removed. Scarred heart tissue does not conduct electrical activity, so the abnormal electrical signals are stopped.
Heart Rhythm Disorders
In this Medical Minute, Dr. Attila Roka, the area's only Cardiac Electrophysiologist, talks about heart rhythm disorders and treatment options.