What the arrhythmia service offers
The arrhythmia service is run by 2 arrhythmia care coordinators. Sarah Bryant has extensive cardiac physiologist experience and specialised cardiac skills and Gemma Baker is a nurse with a background in cardiology.
This service provides care for people who have been diagnosed with having an abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia).
What is an arrhythmia
Cardiac arrhythmia, also known as cardiac dysrhythmia, is a group of conditions in which the heart beat is irregular, too fast or too slow. Arrhythmias are caused by changes within the electrical conduction system of the heart.
There are four main types of arrhythmias: ectopic beats, supraventricular tachycardias, ventricular tachycardias and brady-arrhythmias.
- Ectopic beats, also known as extrasystoles, refer to an electrical impulse originating from the atrium (upper chamber of the heart), or ventricle (lower chamber of the heart), that arises prematurely in the cardiac cycle.
- Supraventricular tachycardias are fast heart rhythms that originate in the atrium. These include atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter and nodal re-entry tachycardias.
- Ventricular tachycardias are fast heart rhythms that originate in the ventricle. These include ventricular tachycardia and fibrillation.
- Brady-arrhythmias are slow heart rhythms caused by delays in the electrical conduction system between the atrium and ventricles.
Symptoms may include:
- Fluttering in the chest
- Lightheadedness /dizziness
- Shortness of breath.
For some people there may be no symptoms associated with their arrhythmia.
What service is provided by the Arrhythmia Service
Support is provided to both patients and carers by providing a point of contact to allay fears and concerns. They will offer advice and information on:
- Cardiac procedures (pacemaker or defibrillator implantation etc)
- Treatment options (DC cardioversion, catheter ablation etc)
- Managing symptoms
Aim of the Service
The team offers high quality patient care, respecting individual wishes, beliefs and needs.
The team will help you to improve your symptoms and quality of life.
They will also listen to your views and comments and use them to develop and improve services for all patients and their families.
The team will:
- Work closely with you, your GP and your hospital consultant to try and improve your symptoms and quality of life.
- Plan your care with you to meet your individual needs.
- Offer support and individualised advice for you and your family.
- Discuss and review your medication and adjust your doses if necessary.
- Monitor your condition.
- We maintain regular telephone support between clinics as required.
- Refer you to other services where appropriate.
Service contact details
Sarah Bryant, Gemma Baker & Andrew Chiles – arrhythmia care co-ordinators: 01271 311633
The service is available Monday – Friday 9am – 4.30pm.
British Heart Foundation (BHF) – is the nation’s heart charity, saving lives through pioneering research, patient care and vital information.
Arrhythmia Alliance – a website for patients and professionals, which aims to promote better understanding, diagnosis, treatment and quality of life for those affected by heart rhythm disorders (cardiac arrhythmia)
- Tel no: 01789 867501
- Website: http://heartrhythmcharity.org.uk
Atrial Fibrillation Association – a website providing information, support and access to established, new or innovative treatments for atrial fibrillation
- Tel no 01789 867502
- Website: http://www.afa.org.uk