Heart rhythm abnormalities can be of two types-Tachycardia and bradycardia.Tachycardia or abnormal increase in heart rate can be physiological or pathological.This pathological increase can be easily identified from a surface ECG by an Electrophysiologist.It is caused due to short circuits in the heart.The medical treatment of such tachycardias are often difficult and may be lifelong.More so,many tachycardia recur on medications.Electrophysiological study involves the identification of such short circuits using special pacing techniques.After identifying the ciruit and its location,it can be disconnected by using radiofrequency waves ,which is referred to as Radiofrequency ablation.This method has been time tested and we are re-introducing this novel technique in KIMS.This technique offers the advantage that the patient can be off long term medications and the side effects of these medications.Moe over,in patients involved in certain kinds of jobs like that of pilot,Drivers,army personnel etc may be disqualified from their position due to such lethal arrhythmias.Electrophysiological study and ablation can be of great help in such a situation.
In the bradycardia sector electrophysiolgy contributes immensely by the implantaion of pacemakers.The more advanced devices like impantable cardioverter defibrillatior (ICD ),has saved several lives by an appropriate shock.Such shocks can be life saving in patients with palpitations and syncope (unexplained loss of conciousness),with lethal arrhythmias.
In patients with refractory heart failure also electophysiology has an edge over drugs.Cardiac re-synchronisation therapy (CRT) is yet another ray of hope in the horizon of pateints with refractory heart faiure.This procedur involves pacing the three chambers of the heart and "re -synchronising" the heart,thereby reducing the symptoms of heart failure.
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