Electrical signals control how fast the heart beats. The signals also make sure it beats in a regular rhythm. Flutter happens when these signals fire when they shouldn't or they are blocked. It may happen because of:
Stimulation from drugs, medical treatment, or caffeine
Changes to heart muscle caused by other health issues like lung disease
Factors that may increase the chances of atrial flutter:
Atrial flutter may need to be corrected with this procedure. A pad is placed on the chest. It delivers a shock to the heart to get it back to a normal rhythm.
The flutter may be caused by an area of abnormal tissue. Ablation is a procedure to destroy the abnormal tissue. This may allow electrical signals to flow smoother through the heart. It may prevent future flutter.
Atrial flutter may not be completely cured. It may come and go over time. Flutter can cause some pooling of blood in the upper heart. Blood clots can form in the pool. Clots that travel out of the heart can travel to the brain and cause a stroke. Blood thinners medicine may be given to reduce the risk of a blood clots.
To reduce the risk of some atrial flutter:
Avoid or limit caffeine, stimulants, alcohol, and nicotine.
Follow care plan for other heart or lung problems.
Atrial flutter. Heart Rhythm Society website. Available at http://www.hrsonline.org/Patient-Resources/Heart-Diseases-Disorders/Atrial-Flutter#axzz3MHkY4esv. Accessed October 30, 2019.
Other heart rhythm disorders. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Arrhythmia/AboutArrhythmia/Other-Rhythm-Disorders_UCM_302045_Article.jsp#.Wh2p2VWnFxA. Accessed October 30, 2019.
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