When Your Heart Goes A-Fluttering
By vitalhf, Oct 10 2018 04:00PM
By Dr. Holly A. Carling, O.M.D., L.Ac., Ph.D.
When your heart flutters it can be a scary experience. If any other organ has a glitch, we don’t worry near as much as when it is the heart. While not all heart flutters are serious, it’s important to know if it is the serious kind or not.
First, we need to define the types of fluttering. Heart palpitations and AFib are the primary two needing differentiation. Palpitations can bring on AFib. When it feels like your heart is fluttering, pounding, flip-flopping, skipping a beat, throbbing or you can hear or feel your heart it is usually a heart palpitation. If it is accompanied by feeling faint, difficulty breathing, lightheadedness, fatigue, racing, a drop in blood pressure or chest pain, it could be a more serious condition referred to as AFib. In the latter case, it is best to get a medical evaluation to be sure, as it could be serious. Typically, palpitations are very short-lived, while AFib seems to go on for a while. If serious enough, measures have to be taken to get the heart back into rhythm.
AFib is estimated to affect about five million people in the U.S. While the majority are over the age of 60, we are seeing both AFib and palpitations in younger populations.
Understanding the situation surrounding it is important.