The heartbeat originates in the upper chambers called atria. This area of the muscle is known as the sinus node and is responsible for maintaining a regular and unchanged heartbeat . When the sinus is affected, a series of heart rhythm problems occur that alter the normality of the heartbeat and make it slower , this condition is known as sinus bradycardia .
What is Sinus Rhythm
Slow heart is nothing more than a type of arrhythmia, usually benign and, although many people are usually alarmed at the diagnosis, the prognosis of this disease is encouraging, since it does not represent a greater risk for the correct functioning of the heart. You want to know more? Find out everything you need to know about sinus bradycardia in this eHealth article.
What is sinus bradycardia?
The normal rhythm of a resting heart should be between 60 and 200 beats per minute. When a person is said to have bradycardia or slow heart, it is because their heart rate is affected and the heart beats less than 60 times per minute .
Not all people with a heart rate less than 60 beats per minute suffer from bradycardia, for example, athletes or very healthy adults tend to have a slower heart rate without presenting any abnormality in the functioning of the sinus node .
Sinus bradycardia is the most common disease of the sinus node and occurs when the sinus node, for various reasons that we will explain later, reduces its electrical impulses, which are responsible for making the heart beat normally.
It can also happen that the node has a pause that prevents it from sending the impulses in a normal way, that the impulse is blocked before the atria of the heart contract or that there is a combination of fast and slow heart rhythms, that is, tachycardia and bradycardia .
Slow heart symptoms
By reading the definition of sinus bradycardia one can infer that the person who suffers from it feels like their heart slows down and slows down. The truth is that no, in fact, sinus bradycardia is usually asymptomatic and is diagnosed in most cases during a routine medical check-up.
When the slow heart is accompanied by symptoms, it is usually associated with other secondary conditions, the use of medications, congenital sinus node defects, decreased sympathetic tone or excessive vagal tone. When bradycardia is symptomatic, it is usually recognized by the following symptoms and consequences:
- Angina pectoris.
- Faintness .
- Mental confusion.
- Giddiness .
- Difficulty breathing.
Causes of sinus bradycardia
The causes of sinus bradycardia are diverse, sometimes it presents as a benign condition due to positive health habits such as exercise. Other times the slow heart is the product of aging and begins to manifest itself after 50 years.
Also, there are people who experience sudden sinus bradycardia when they hear unpleasant news and then their heart rate returns to normal on its own.
It can also happen that this disease is caused by some type of congenital heart disease , physiological sinus defect or secondary diseases that, although they do not originate in the heart, affect the heart rhythm. Among the most common causes of bradycardia we find:
- Thyroid gland dysfunction causing hypothyroidism.
- Sleep apnea.
- Intense physical training.
- Medicines that block calcium channels, beta-blockers, and antiarrhythmics.
- Scarring of myocardial tissue.
- Hypertension .
- Fever Rheumatic.
- Cerebral hypertension
- Lack of oxygen.
- Coular surgeries.
- Meningitis .
- Aging or being over 50 years old.
- Tumors in the neck or chest.
Treatment of sinus bradycardia
When an alteration in the heart rate is diagnosed, however benign it may seem, it is necessary to perform a series of tests to check the state of heart health . Your doctor may order an EKG to find out where the bradycardia originates and what is causing it.
When the heartbeat is excessively slow, it is common for the specialist to order Holter monitoring to diagnose prolonged pauses in the heart rate and tachycardias. Once the whole heart is examined and it is verified that there are no abnormalities, the person can lead his life without the need for treatment , however, there is the possibility that the doctor discontinues the consumption of some medications that may be responsible for bradycardia sinus.
When sinus bradycardia is symptomatic and is compromising quality of life and heart health, it is important to look for alternatives to correct bradycardia. In general, this occurs when the slow heart is the product of a problem in the sinus node and the correct way to cure these conditions is by prescribing drugs such as Atropine or placing an artificial pacemaker.
Pacemakers to treat sinus rhythm
Pacemakers are very small devices that are placed under the skin, just below the collarbone on the left or right side of the chest, as needed. Pacemakers are made up of a battery and an electronic circuit, kept inside a metal box, and act by regulating the heartbeat, that is, they exert the work of the sinus node, which is the heart’s natural pacemaker.
How does the pacemaker work? A pacemaker is constantly monitoring the heart rate and when it detects that the sinus rhythm is slowing, it sends an electrical impulse to the heart to correct it. The signal transmitted by the pacemaker is totally imperceptible and nowadays the most modern pacemakers can be adjusted by medical specialists so that they work according to specific pathologies.
Hello Readers, I am Nikki Bella a Psychology student. I have always been concerned about human behavior and the mental processes that lead us to act and think the way we do. My collaboration as an editor in the psychology area of Well Being Pole has allowed me to investigate further and expand my knowledge in the field of mental health; I have also acquired great knowledge about physical health and well-being, two fundamental bases that are directly related and are part of all mental health.