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A 42-year-old member asked:

what is the life expectancy for people with ventricular tachycardia? how serious is ventricular tachycardia, and what kind of treatment is available?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
Internal Medicine 41 years experience
Most : Most forms of ventricular tachycardia (VT) are very serious, and require close management by a cardiologist. Conditions that cause scarring or enlargement of the heart can lead to vt, but sometimes VT happens by itself. Treating ventricular tachycardia is a multifaceted approach. If there is an underlying condition causing the vt, then that must be optimally treated. There are several medications available to help stabilize the heart rhythm and prevent episodes of vt, but these should be prescribed and monitored by an expert. Depending on the cause and severity of the vt, some patients also require defibrillators. A defibrillator is a device similar to a pacemaker, but with the capability to identify VT and convert the rhythm with an electrical shock.
Dr. Bennett Werner
Cardiology 44 years experience
Variable: Vt has a wide spectrum of severity. Some kinds cause no symptoms and are benign and others deteriorate rapidly to ventricular fibrillation and cause death. In the setting of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (your other question), VT is more serious and may require placement of an icd. Icds have been shown to greatly improve prognosis.

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Lebanon, Missouri
A 33-year-old female asked:

Can pvcs lead go vtach?

2 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bennett Werner
Cardiology 44 years experience
Anything is possible: Vtach or ventricular tachycardia is a sustained rhythm of >100 BPM (often much faster) consisting of beats that arise exclusively in the ventricles instead of the normal location in the right atrium. In advanced heart disease and certain congenital heart diseases, pvcs may be an ominous precursor of vt, but in the vast majority, pvcs are just pvcs. All healthy people have some pvcs every day.
A 29-year-old member asked:

Are the symptoms of ventricular tachycardia bad?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Scott Welker
General Surgery 27 years experience
Yes!: Ventricular tachycardia is usually fatal. It can be treated by defibrillation (that maneuver you see done on tv when the rub gel on the paddles and yell "clear!" then shock the patient). Only if caught in the first few seconds is v-tac (as we call it for short) reversible, and even then the underlying cause must be determined and fixed so it doesn't dome back.
A member asked:

Do doctors see a lot of patients with ventricular tachycardia?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. J. patrick Tokarz
Specializes in Family Medicine
Yes: We don't always recognize the problem however, see your primary provider to further evaluate.
A 30-year-old member asked:

What's the difference between supraventricular thachycardia and ventricular tachycardia?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bennett Werner
Cardiology 44 years experience
Everything: Svt arises in the atria (the upper chambers) and VT arises in the ventricles (lower chambers). Svt often occurs in otherwise healthy hearts and is annoying but only rarely serious. Vt usually arises in diseased hearts, can be serious, and sometimes is life-threatening. Vt in the setting of a heart attack or acute coronary syndrome is very dangerous.
A 33-year-old member asked:

What are some signs of ventricular tachycardia?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bennett Werner
Cardiology 44 years experience
No specific signs: You can not determine if an abnormal heart rhythm is due to VT by how it feels. Vt is, by definition, a fast heart beat so people may feel pounding in their chest. Depending on the rate, they may become dizzy, short of breath, have chest pain, get sweaty and/or pass out. None of these symptoms are specific for vt. The rhythm must be recorded on ekg or on a monitor for definitive diagnosis.

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Last updated Nov 12, 2020

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