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Abnormal rhythmicity resulting from abnormalities in the conducting system of the heart is called arrhythmia. It describes an irregular heartbeat – the heart may beat too fast, too slowly, too early, or irregularly.


Any interruption of the electrical impulses that cause the heart to a contract can result in arrhythmia. It may be caused by many different factors, including:

(i) Coronary artery disease.

(ii) Subnormal rhythmicity of pacemaker.

(iii) Shift or pacemaker from SA node to other parts of the heart.

(iv) Block at different points of the conduction system.

(v) Abnormal pathway of impulse transmission.

(vi) Spontaneous generation of abnormal impulse in any part of the heart.

(vii) Electrolyte imbalances in your blood (such as sodium or potassium).

(viii) Irregular heart rhythms can also occur in “normal, healthy” hearts.

Fig: Arrhythmia Heart Beat

When symptoms of an arrhythmia occur, they may include:

Palpitations, Pounding in your chest, Dizziness or feeling light-headed, Shortness of breath, Weakness or fatigue (feeling very tired) etc.

You may also be at risk of developing an arrhythmia if your heart tissue is damaged because of an illness – for example, if you have had a heart attack or have heart failure.