Heart Rhythm Treatments
As a leader in cardiac care, Banner Health offers the most effective treatments for heart rhythm conditions:
Cardioversion is a procedure where an electrical shock is delivered to the heart to convert an abnormal heart rhythm back to a normal rhythm. Cardioversions can be done chemically or electronically.
Most elective or "non-emergency" cardioversions are performed to treat atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter, benign heart rhythm disturbances
Heart ablation can often cure irregular heartbeats, which means patients don't have to be on medication for the rest of their lives. Is used for atrial fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia.
Heart ablation destroys (ablates) abnormal electric pathways or groups of cells that may cause arrhythmia. During the ablation, an electrophysiologist inserts catheters into the heart. The patient may be awake but should not feel pain during the procedure.
Once the catheters are positioned, the electrophysiologist uses a pacemaker to deliver electrical impulses to the heart and determine the source of the irregular heartbeat. Then an ablation machine creates a scar which blocks the irregular electrical impulses.
Heart ablation can also be done surgically. A Banner Health physician makes small keyhole incisions between the ribs, through which a tiny camera and video-guided instruments are inserted.
Pacemakers and dfibrillators can help restore an acceptable heart rhythm for patients with irregular heartbeats, including atrial fibrillation, tachycardia and bradycardia.
A pacemaker helps treat slow heart rhythm by keeping track of your heartbeat and generating electronic signals to help keep your heart beating at the right speed.
A defibrillator monitors the heartbeat and gives out a high-energy electrical impulse to stop very fast and abnormal heartbeats and returns the heart to a normal rhythm.
Pacemaker or defibrillator Implantation usually takes place in the Cardiac Catherization Lab.
During the procedure, an electrophysiologist makes a two to three-inch incision in the upper chest under the collarbone. Using a special monitor and injectable dye, the doctor guides the device's leads through a large vein to the heart. Then the doctor connects the leads to the device and places it under the skin. The incision is closed and bandaged.
Banner Health also offers lead extraction. Leads, which are placed inside the heart, deliver electrical pulses from the device to the heart muscle. Sometimes these leads must be removed and repaired.
The Maze procedure can control atrial fibrillation and/or atrial flutter.
During the procedure, surgeons make incisions on the heart to create scar tissue, which does not conduct electricity and disrupts the path of abnormal electrical impulses.
Some cardiac arrhythmias may be treated through medication management. Your heart doctor can choose a drug based on the type of arrhythmia and any other underlying heart disease or risk factors present. These drugs may include beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and anticoagulants.