An arrhythmia is a heartbeat that’s not regular. Examples would be beating too slowly (bradycardia) or too quickly (tachycardia), which causes problems like dizziness or fatigue. In most cases, arrhythmias are caused by an electrical “short circuit” in the heart, but they can also be caused by hormones produced by the thyroid. Many children with a heart arrhythmia never experience symptoms and don’t need medical care. However, in some cases, an experienced pediatric heart expert will need to identify and treat your child’s arrhythmia.
Expert Care for Irregular Heartbeat
At Nemours, our team of experienced children’s heart experts is here to provide the personalized care your child needs. Our board-certified, fellowship-trained pediatric cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons (specialize in surgical procedures of the chest, including the heart and lungs) can provide answers to your questions, address your concerns and offer the latest treatment options for all types of heart arrhythmia. Our cardiac team provides children with research-backed care, delivered in a family-centered setting.
Types of Irregular Heartbeat Conditions We Treat
- inherited arrhythmias (long QT syndrome (LQTS); catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (CPVT); short QT syndrome (SQTS); Brugada syndrome)
- premature atrial contraction
- premature ventricular contraction
- postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS)
Services We Offer for Heart Arrhythmias
Cardiac arrhythmia doesn’t always need treatment. We offer extensive diagnostic and treatment services, which may vary depending upon the condition and location, including:
- Cardiology. Your child’s heart specialist may prescribe a medication or combination of medications that can help to stabilize the heartbeat, as well as treat the underlying cause of the problem.
- Cardiac Catheterization. If medications aren’t enough to treat your child’s arrhythmia, the cardiac specialist may recommend catheter ablation, a procedure used to diagnose or treat cardiac problems by inserting a thin plastic, flexible tube (called a “catheter”) into an artery or vein, and threading it through the bloodstream into the heart and its large blood vessels.
- Cardiac Diagnostic Testing and Kid-Friendly Imaging. State-of-the-art, noninvasive and minimally invasive tests for kids of all ages, including fetal testing (for babies still in the womb), echocardiogram, and tilt table testing.
- Endocrinology. Experts in pediatric hormones, since some arrhythmias are caused by problems with the thyroid.
- Heart Surgery (Implanted Devices or Ablation). Your child’s heart specialist may recommend a pacemaker, a device that uses electrical impulses to help the heart beat more regularly. Similar to a pacemaker, an implanted defibrillator is a device that can also help the heart beat more regularly. Depending on your child’s condition, your heart surgeon may recommend ablation surgery.
Why Choose Us for Arrhythmia Care
The Nemours Cardiac Center provides diagnosis and treatment options for children with arrhythmia by working together in dedicated cardiac teams — and working closely with Nemours specialists in more than 30 additional disciplines when needed.
Regional Arrhythmia Highlights
Services, programs, facilities and care teams differ at each location. Call for details.
We offer care for kids with arrhythmia at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del.) and select Nemours duPont Pediatrics locations.
The Nemours Cardiac Center located at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children is ranked among the best children’s hospitals in the nation for pediatric cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News and World Report .
We offer for kids with arrhythmia at Nemours Children’s Hospital (Orlando) and select Nemours Children’s Specialty Care locations.
Our renowned pediatric care team in the Nemours Cardiac Center at Nemours Children’s Hospital is just for cardiac patients. We also offer leading-edge capabilities to detect heart problems early, including babies still in the womb — giving children the best chance. Our Nemours Center for Fetal Care is available at multiple locations throughout Central Florida.
We offer care for kids with arrhythmia at Nemours Children’s Specialty Care, Pensacola and our hospital affiliate, West Florida Healthcare, with outpatient and follow-up appointments also available at select Nemours Children’s Specialty Care locations.
Our Nemours Cardiac Center in located in Pensacola is home to one of the few accredited pediatric transthoracic and fetal echocardiography labs in Florida and, if needed, facilitate the transfer of extremely ill children between our Nemours Cardiac Center locations (e.g., to Nemours Children’s Hospital).