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Cardiac arrhythmias are a general term for a group of conditions involving abnormal heartbeats, also called palpitations. Your heart might beat too fast or too slow, and may be regular or irregular, causing your heart to pump blood less effectively. Most cardiac arrhythmias are temporary and harmless, where your heart may skip a beat or have an extra beat. Other arrhythmias, however, may be life threatening and require treatment.

The types of cardiac arrhythmia vary. A very slow heart rate is called bradycardia, when your heart rate is less than 60 beats per minute. A very fast heart rate is called tachycardia, when your heart beats faster than 100 beats per minute. A fast, uncoordinated heart rate is called fibrillation (also called atrial fibrillation, AF or Afib), which is the most serious form of cardiac arrhythmia.

What are the general symptoms of cardiac arrhythmias?

  • Palpitations or rapid thumping in your chest
  • Feeling tired or light-headed
  • Loosing consciousness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Heartbeat might feel like a strong pulse in your neck
  • A fluttering, racing beat in your chest
  • Feelings of discomfort
  • Weakness