Electrophysiology Studies: Why You Need One

by | Dec 5, 2016 | Health

An electrophysiologist or EP doctor is trained to conduct tests such as electrophysiology studies to understand the root cause of irregular heart rhythms or arrhythmia, says Heart Rhythm.

Electrophysiology studies

The process is done inside an electrophysiology lab by a trained EP doctor. First, the nurse will put an IV in your arm. It’s a sedative to help you relax. Then the nurse will clean or shave the part that the doctor will work on. This can be your arm, neck or groin. A local anesthetic will be given to numb the area. Then a tube will be inserted, with a sheath, into your artery. Expect some pressure. The doctor will send electric pulses to see how your heart works at different speeds, with the equipment monitoring the electrical signals of your heart. This can take anywhere from 1 to 4 hours.

Reasons for the test

  • Doctors use it to check where the arrhythmia is coming from
  • It helps doctors see if certain medications work better for you than others
  • The test helps doctors figure out the best way to treat the problem
  • The test determines whether you are more likely to suffer from heart problems or not
  • If you keep fainting, that could be a sign of a major heart problem. The test can confirm whether this is the case for you or not

Benefits of the test

Prevention is always better than the cure. By consulting with an EP doctor and opting for the test early on, your doctor is at a much better position to diagnose what’s wrong and figure out what the necessary treatment is. That should help keep your condition from getting worse. Without the test, you might never know you have a heart problem in the first place. By the time you experience a cardiac arrest, it could be too late.

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