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A 37-year-old member asked:

What risks are attributed to untreated bradycardia or tachycardia?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mary Callahan
Cardiology 30 years experience
Tachy or Brady: Aside from not feeling well with either of these, there is a likelihood that either can cause a cardiomyopathy or a weakness in the muscle. These rhythms can also cause a loss of consciousness or syncope. So, these arrhythmias should be treated and followed regularly.
Dr. Michael Mascia
Critical Care 50 years experience
Pump Failure: Heart rate & rhythm combine to determine cardiac output, or, in common terms, the pumping ability of the heart. Good cardiac function & pumping ability in a normal heart can decrease with slow or fast heart rates. Usually, low rates protect the heart, but limit cardiac output = exercise tolerance is decreased. Sustained high rates = heart damage & heart failure. Sick heart? All bets are off. Dr. M.
Dr. Nancy Mellow
Internal Medicine 45 years experience
It depends: In some cases, these can be normal states (an athletic person with bradycardia) or due to another condition (tachycardia with overactive thyroid, too much alcohol, or anemia) that needs to be treated. Otherwise, either can cause dizziness or fainting, fatigue, and inadequate blood flow (which can cause heart damage or even a stroke). The safest approach is treatment.

Similar questions

A 28-year-old member asked:

What risks are attributed to bradycardia or tachycardia left untreated?

2 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Francis Uricchio
Cardiology 39 years experience
Depends: The risk of bradycardia is typically dizziness or passing out. On occasion, bradycardia can chest pain or heart failure. Tachycardia can chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, lightheadedness, stroke and passing out. Certain types of tachycardia are dangerous and can cause sudden death.

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Last updated Aug 12, 2014
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