Studying cardiac arrhythmias in nematodes

Researchers at the Goethe University have developed a simple model using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans that can be used to test substances for treating genetically-mediated cardiac arrhythmias. They used the nematode ...

Oct 02, 2015
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Predicting arrhythmias so as to prevent them

Researchers have discovered how to predict some cardiac arrhythmias several steps before they even occur. It's a finding that could lead to an improved cardiac device, with equipment designed to detect when arrhythmias are ...

Sep 28, 2015
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What powers the pumping heart?

Researchers at the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research have uncovered a treasure trove of proteins, which hold answers about how our heart pumps—a phenomenon known as contractility.

Sep 25, 2015
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Resin may provide medicine against epilepsy

Sticky resin from conifers contains substances that could relieve or cure epilepsy. Researchers at Linköping University have synthesized and tested 71 substances known as resin acids, of which twelve are prime candidates ...

Sep 08, 2015
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Cardiac dysrhythmia (also known as arrhythmia and irregular heartbeat) is any of a large and heterogeneous group of conditions in which there is abnormal electrical activity in the heart. The heart beat may be too fast or too slow, and may be regular or irregular.

Some arrhythmias are life-threatening medical emergencies that can result in cardiac arrest. Others cause symptoms such as an abnormal awareness of heart beat (palpitations), and may be merely annoying. These palpitations have also been known to be caused by atrial/ventricular fibrillation, wire faults, and other technical or mechanical issues in cardiac pacemakers/defibrillators. Still others may not be associated with any symptoms at all, but may predispose the patient to potentially life threatening stroke or embolism.

Some arrhythmias are very minor and can be regarded as normal variants. In fact, most people will on occasion feel their heart skip a beat, or give an occasional extra strong beat; neither of these is usually a cause for alarm.

Proarrhythmia is a new or more frequent occurrence of pre-existing arrhythmias, paradoxically precipitated by antiarrhythmic therapy, which means it is a side effect associated with the administration of some existing antiarrhythmic drugs, as well as drugs for other indications. In other words, it is a tendency of antiarrhythmic drugs to facilitate emergence of new arrhythmias.

The term sinus arrhythmia refers to a normal phenomenon of mild acceleration and slowing of the heart rate that occurs with breathing in and out. It is usually quite pronounced in children, and steadily decreases with age. This can also be present during meditation breathing exercises that involve deep inhaling and breath holding patterns.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

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