Posted on October 4th, 2016
Individuals with atrial fibrillation, a type of arrhythmia that occurs in the top chambers of the heart, have a higher risk of stroke than the average population. While AFib on its own is not generally life threatening and can be treated through medication or ablation, most AFib patients will be prescribed a blood thinner to reduce the risk of stroke. There are several options for blood thinners... Read More
Posted on September 15th, 2016
Premature ventricular contractions are extra beats that occur in the lower chambers of the heart, or ventricles. Patients often describe them as feeling like a very hard heartbeat followed by a missed beat, or like a fluttering or pounding in their chest. While not typically life-threatening on their own, frequent premature ventricular contractions can affect the heart’s overall function if... Read More
Posted on September 8th, 2016
Premature ventricular contractions, or PVCs, are a type of heart palpitation where extra beats originate in the bottom chambers of the heart, or ventricles. Single extra beats are called premature ventricular contractions. When multiple extra beats happen together, it becomes non-sustained ventricular tachycardia or ventricular tachycardia.
Many patients describe their PVCs as feeling a really... Read More
Posted on August 15th, 2016
Norma first visited the Oklahoma Heart Hospital in 2010. She had been traveling and not feeling very well, so she made an appointment with her primary care physician when she returned home. Her primary care physician diagnosed her with atrial fibrillation and referred her to an Oklahoma Heart Hospital physician immediately. She began taking medications for AFib and also had a mitral valve... Read More
Posted on August 1st, 2016
Regular follow-up appointments are important for patients with pacemakers and defibrillators. When a patient arrives at Oklahoma Heart Hospital or one if its satellite pacemaker clinics for a device follow-up appointment, an assistant takes vital signs, talks with the patient about how they have been feeling, and reviews their current medications.
Then the device technician brings in the cart to... Read More
Posted on July 15th, 2016
Surgical ablation is used to treat atrial fibrillation in patients for whom other treatment options, such as medications and catheter ablation, have not been successful. The Oklahoma Heart Hospital uses two types of surgical ablation: convergent (or hybrid) ablation and Cox Maze IV ablation.
The convergent ablation procedure combines the expertise of a cardiothoracic surgeon and an... Read More
Posted on July 6th, 2016
Surgical ablation is a procedure used to treat atrial fibrillation, the most common type of irregular heartbeat. Atrial fibrillation, also known as AFib, is generally not a life-threatening condition on its own, but it puts patients at greater risk for stroke. Symptoms may include shortness of breath, fatigue, light headedness, dizziness and heart palpitations — all of which can impact your... Read More
Posted on June 15th, 2016
For patients with slow or abnormal heart rhythms, a pacemaker can be a life-changing device that helps them return to normal daily activity and normal energy levels. The procedure to place a pacemaker is relatively simple and begins with the doctor making a small incision about an inch long in the chest. The wires (leads) are placed through the incision and guided to the heart muscle through a... Read More
Posted on June 1st, 2016
As you go through a normal day of walking around, taking the stairs, or lifting something heavy, your body makes adjustments to better accomplish each task. For example, your heart rate increases in order to pump more blood to your body as you begin an activity. But if you have a slow or abnormal heart rhythm, the heart doesn’t adequately respond to the situation, which can leave you... Read More
Posted on May 15th, 2016
Ejection fraction is a measurement of the heart’s overall efficiency as it pumps blood to the body. A low ejection fraction can be a sign of cardiac disease or damage to the heart, including damage from consistent high blood pressure that affects the pumping function of the heart or genetic conditions that impact the heart. A normal ejection fraction range is 65 percent plus or minus 12, or... Read More