A pacemaker is a small device that sends electric impulses to restore the heart’s rhythm and maintain a regular heart rate. Pacemakers are used to treat arrhythmias like atrial fibrillation, also known as AFib, which are problems with the rate or rhythm of the heartbeat. You may need a pacemaker if the electrical activity of your heart is abnormal and you have an abnormal heart rhythm. There are several of symptoms for AFib, but the most common symptoms are outlined below.
You Feel Extremely Fatigued
If your heart cannot effectively pump blood through your body, it may leave you feeling extremely tired or fatigued. Fatigue may cause you to feel sleepy or like you have no energy. In particular, notice how you feel when you walk up a flight of steps. If you find it difficult to breathe after waking up a single flight of stairs, there may be something wrong with your heart.
You Frequently Get Lightheaded or Dizzy
Dizziness or feeling lightheaded can be a sign your heart isn’t beating properly. These signs can also be caused by other conditions such as low blood pressure, low blood sugar and hyperventilation.
You Fainted, But You Don’t Know Why
Fainting can occur because you’ve not eaten or because you’ve had a sudden shock. It can also be the result of your heart beating too slowly or irregularly. If you faint but otherwise seem normal, call your doctor.
You Have Palpitations or an Intense Pounding in Your Chest
A pounding sensation in your chest could be a sign of a serious irregular heartbeat that might be controlled with a pacemaker. Arrhythmias or AFib can occur when you’re physically active, but also when you are quiet, sitting while watching TV, or lying in bed. You might feel your heartbeat unusually fast, or you may just notice it beating when you normally don’t. If you already have a pacemaker, fluttering or pounding sensations can mean that it is malfunctioning.
You Have Chest Pain
Chest pain could be a sign of a heart attack or heart disease. Depending on the type of condition, it may be treatable with a pacemaker.
You Are Short of Breath or Have Difficulty Breathing
Shortness of breath is a symptom of heart disease or an irregular heartbeat. Increasing shortness of breath while doing your usual activities could be a sign that your heart isn’t working as efficiently as it should.
You Take Medications That Slow Down Your Heartbeat
Some medications are designed to slow down your heartbeat. Your doctor may recommend a pacemaker if you need higher doses of these medications and there is concern that your heart rate will go too low.
If you believe you are suffering from a heart rhythm disorder like atrial fibrillation, you may benefit from a pacemaker. Speak to your cardiologist about visiting the cardiac electrophysiologists of Heart Rhythm Consultants. Our care coordinators can give you more information about testing and treatment options, including pacemakers.
We value your health and wellbeing above all else. Our experienced team always stands ready to assist you in any questions about your heart health. Speak with a care coordinator today and schedule an appointment with Heart Rhythm Consultants.
About Heart Rhythm Consultants, P.A.
The experienced electrophysiologists of Heart Rhythm Consultants, P.A. have been serving West Florida including Sarasota, Venice, Tampa, Port Charlotte, and Sun City Center for over 15 years. Our specialty cardiologists, or EP doctors, help patients manage their abnormal heart rhythm conditions, whether they suffer from arrhythmias like atrial fibrillation (AFib), or other irregular heartbeats. Dr. Dilip J. Mathew, Dr. Antonio Moretta, and Dr. Rajesh Malik perform arrhythmia treatments like cardiac ablation, cryoablation, and implanting pacemakers or defibrillators. Dr. Mathew has performed nearly 5,000 complex cardiac ablations. View our office locations in Sarasota and Venice, Florida.