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Atrial Tachycardia Symptoms and Treatment Guidelines

Can atrial fibrillation cause ventricular tachycardia? Can atrial tachycardia be cured? Is atrial tachycardia dangerous? Let’s find out about atrial tachycardia symptoms and treatment!

Atrial Tachycardia Definition

Atrial tachycardia meaning – What is atrial tachycardia? Atrial tachycardia is a fast heart rhythm that doesn’t come from the sinoatrial node. Instead, it comes from other parts of the atrium.

atrial tachycardia symptoms and treatment guidelines - types of atrial tachycardia

Atrial Tachycardia Causes

What causes atrial tachycardia? What is the most common cause of atrial tachycardia? Atrial tachycardia can be caused by chronic high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, valvular heart disease, or an aging heart.

Atrial tachycardia is a rare type of SVT marked by bursts or paroxysms of fast, regular arrhythmia caused by focal atrial impulses from somewhere other than the sinus node. The tricuspid annulus, the crista terminalis of the right atrium, and the coronary sinus are common for this to happen.

Multifocal atrial tachycardia is a subtype common in people with severe COPD. It has different P wave shapes (by definition, three or more foci) and PP intervals that are very irregular. Most of the time, the rate is between 100 and 140 beats per minute. As a result, it is often mistaken for atrial fibrillation.

Solitary atrial premature beats are harmless and are usually not caused by a heart condition. They happen when a focus in the atria that isn’t supposed to be there is fired before the next sinus node impulse. Unless the ectopic focus is close to the sinus node, the shape of the P wave is usually different from the normal complex of the patient. Most premature heartbeats stop when the heart rate speeds up in any way.

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Atrial Tachycardia Diagnosis

  • Having short, regular bursts of tachycardia.
  • Multifocal atrial tachycardia is common in people with severe COPD and shows up on an ECG as three or more different P wave shapes. It is often mistaken for atrial fibrillation. The best treatment is to treat the lung disease that is causing the problem.

Atrial Tachycardia Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of atrial tachycardia – What are some symptoms of atrial tachycardia?

Focal atrial tachycardias usually go and go away on their own. Still, they can also be constant and show signs and symptoms of heart failure due to tachycardia-induced cardiomyopathy.

Most patients say their palpitations came on quickly, just like other types of PSVT. Angina or shortness of breath can be signs of a problem with the heart, like coronary heart disease (CHD). When you look closely at the P wave on a 12-lead ECG, it seems like the focus is not on the sinus node. However, some places (like the high right atrial crista terminalis) can look like sinus tachycardia. In this case, the sudden start and stop of the arrhythmia can help tell the difference between atrial and sinus tachycardia, but sometimes an electrophysiologic study is also needed.

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Atrial Tachycardia Treatment and Management Guidelines

Treatment of atrial tachycardia – What is the best treatment for atrial tachycardia?

Initial treatment for atrial tachycardia is similar to that for other types of PSVT, but vagal maneuvers and intravenous adenosine are usually less effective. So instead, beta-blockers or calcium channel blockers can be given intravenously to patients with stable blood pressure and heart rate. For long-term care, the patient can then switch to oral medications.

Antiarrhythmic drugs or catheter ablation may be used when a patient has symptoms. Long-term anticoagulation is not needed if the patient does not have atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter.

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Patients with multifocal atrial tachycardia should be treated for underlying conditions like COPD. Verapamil, taken orally in divided doses of 240–480 mg daily, may help some patients.

All people with atrial tachycardia who don’t get better with medicine should be sent to a cardiologist or cardiac electrophysiologist.

I hope you understand atrial tachycardia symptoms and treatment guidelines.

About Micel Ortega

Dr. Micel Ortega, MD, PhD, is a highly respected medical practitioner with over 15 years of experience in the field of internal medicine. As a practicing physician, Dr. Micel has built a reputation for providing compassionate and evidence-based care to his patients. He specializes in the diagnosis and management of chronic conditions, including diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease. In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Micel has published extensively in top-tier medical journals on the latest advancements in internal medicine and has played an instrumental role in the development of innovative treatment options.

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