Understanding is the key to finding answers.
Heart palpitations are relatively common and usually a harmless condition in which the heart feels as if it is pounding, racing or fluttering.
Heart palpitations account for 16% of symptoms that cause patients to go to their primary care doctor, second only to chest pain as the reason patients seek a cardiology evaluation.1-3
While concerning, palpitations usually are harmless. However, in some cases they may indicate a more serious heart condition, like a heart rhythm disorder, that requires treatment.
You might feel palpitations in your chest, throat or neck. They can occur while you’re at rest, exercising or going about your normal routine.
If your doctor suspects that your heart palpitations are heart related, heart monitoring may be necessary.
Heart monitoring is used to either identify or rule out a heart rhythm disorder and to determine the right course of treatment.
Types of heart monitoring vary in terms of how long they can be used and how information is captured. Common types of heart monitoring systems include:
These talking points will help you remember important information related to your heart palpitations to share with your healthcare team.
In most cases, no treatment will be needed. Other times, heart palpitations are treated with lifestyle changes or medication.
To help control heart palpitations, simple lifestyle changes can be implemented:
Your healthcare team may decide that your heart palpitations can be controlled with medication or by making changes to your current medication. After determining the cause of your palpitations, your doctor can prescribe the appropriate medication.
Mayou R. Chest pain, palpitations and panic. J Psychosom Res. 1998;44:53-70.
Kroenke K, Arringon ME, Mangelsdroff AD. The prevalence of symptoms in medical outpatients and the adequacy of therapy. Arch Intern Med. 1990;150:1685-9.
Knudson MP. The natural history of palpitations in a family practice. J Fam Pract.1987;24:357-60.