Cardiologists have a number of tools they use to diagnose and treat a range of cardiovascular conditions. The Holter monitor is one such tool that is able to continuously record your electrical heart tracings (EKGs) for a 24 to 48 hour period. As a small battery-operated device, a Holter monitor can be worn throughout your regular activities. This allows your cardiologist to review your EKGs after a few days and evaluate the results for signs of any heart rhythm problems.
What Leads to the Use of a Holter Monitor?
Your doctor may ask you to wear a Holter Monitor if you have been experiencing heart palpitations like the sensations of skipped or extra heartbeats. Passing out, an abnormally fast heart rate, and an unusually slow heart rate are also common reasons to require a Holter monitor period. If you really do have any type of heart problem, the Holter monitor will collect the data that your cardiologist needs to make an official diagnosis.
Wearing a Holter Monitor
A couple of “leads” will be attached to your chest like stickers. They are connected to thin wires that connect into the Holter monitor. The monitor itself is usually kept in a pouch that can be attached to the pants or worn across the shoulders. Other than swimming and showering, you will be able to continue with your regular schedule. Working, driving, socializing, eating, and sleeping can all continue normally as the Holter monitor reads your heart tracings. You will also need to keep a patient diary to record your timing and types of symptoms. Correlating this diary with the data collected by your Holter monitor can help to trace symptoms and abnormalities.
Though a Holter monitor cannot catch everything or lead to every necessary diagnosis, it is a very important tool to utilize with other technologies in order to identify, diagnose, and treat heart conditions before they become deadly. If you suspect that you may have any type of heart condition, don’t wait to call (941) 744-1200 and make an appointment at Manatee Cardiovascular Wellness Institute in Bradenton, Florida. Manatee Cardio offers comprehensive cardiovascular care and wellness programs to help you regain and maintain your health for years to come.