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Q. I have an artificial pacemaker, and I am having shortness of breath. Can you interpret my EKG?

Answered by
Dr. Muhammad Zubayer Alam
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 03, 2021 and last reviewed on: May 10, 2021

Hi doctor,

I am suffering from shortness of breath, and also I have a pacemaker in my heart due to a complete heart block. Can you please tell me about the findings in my EKG?

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Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I can understand your concern. According to your EKG (electrocardiogram) tracing (attachment removed to protect the patient's identity), it shows tachycardia, which means heart rate is 100 or above 100 BPM. Tachycardia may result from various physiological and pathological causes. Some reasons for tachycardia are anxiety, stress, lack of sleep, overthinking, exercises, anger, fear, fever, medications, excess caffeine intake, etc. Some pathological reasons that may cause tachycardia are anemia, heart diseases, heavy alcohol consumption, thyrotoxicosis, high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, smoking, electrolytes imbalance, stimulant drugs like tablet Methamphetamine, etc. So, we should find out the causes of tachycardia.

Pacemakers are different in types and functions. Newer pacemakers are used when it is needed. If your heartbeat becomes 60 or less than 60 BPM, then your pacemaker will send a signal to your heart to correct the bradycardia. Also, your pacemaker will cause tachycardia during exercise to keep pace with your body, as needed like a normal person. Pacemaker-induced tachycardia may also happen due to rare abnormal rhythm disorder; even failure of the pacemaker may cause tachycardia.

As I have already mentioned, the exact causes of tachycardia should be detected first and treated accordingly.

Kindly do the following investigations like CBC (complete blood count), thyroid function tests, serum electrolytes, RBS (random blood sugar), ECHO (echocardiography), etc., to find the underlying cause for your present sufferings.

Take care. In case of any other query, ask me.

Thank you doctor for your reply.

Can you please tell me if there are any abnormalities seen on the tracing other than the tachycardia?

#

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

It appears to be normal except for tachycardia. If you can provide me with the below information, it will be possible to detect the probable causes for your present sufferings. I can help you with it.

  1. When did it start?
  2. Is there any incident after which it started?
  3. If you have any of the mentioned physiological reasons?
  4. History of recent health check-ups.
  5. Medications history.

Please take necessary steps or measures to subside the above-mentioned physiological reasons, if present.

Re-check if your pacemaker works well or not.

Do an annual health check-up with the cardiologist and undergo ECHO.

Consult with your cardiologist for evaluation and treatment purposes if your present sufferings persist for long or bother you.

Take care. In case of any other query, knock me.


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