Posted by Alex on 30th November 2011

Causes of Heart Flutters during Pregnancy and Its Treatment

Heart Flutters during Pregnancy

Prior to pregnancy, a pregnant patient has faster average heart rate and varying ECG readings compared to male patients. During menstrual cycles, the levels of estrogen and progesterone in a female patient’s body rise and fall. These changes correspond with more frequent occurrences of supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) and may manifest symptoms associated with SVT which is also often observed during pregnancy and shows heart flutter symptoms

  • Cardiac arrhythmia tops the list of reasons for consultation during pregnancy. Cases of malignant arrhythmia are rare, so most complaints for heart flutters are usually because of benign arrhythmias.
  • However, pregnant patients who have a history of serious heart diseases have higher risks. This is due to the fact that arrhythmias, which are often triggered by the discomforts of pregnancy, may be symptoms of the recurrence of previous heart diseases. These abnormalities in heart rhythm can even compromise fetal well-being.

Causes and Treatments for Heart Flutters in Pregnancy

There are several underlying reasons for heart flutters in pregnancy, so it follows that there are also several treatments available for the pregnant patient. These are some of the most common:

  • During pregnancy, the body produces 50 percent more blood than that of a non-pregnant patient. Progesterone is most concentrated during pregnancy compared to any other time in a female patient’s life. This hormone is responsible for several dramatic changes during pregnancy, both physically and emotionally, and can also account for faster and more pronounced heartbeats. Even at 8 weeks, during which the blood volume is still normal, the heart beat is much faster than usual. This allows for sufficient blood circulation to flow to the the uterus even a change in blood volume occurs.
  • Stress can also be a big contributor to heart flutters. Patients, during their pregnancy, have a lot to worry about—their rapidly changing bodies, the pain they will go through during labor, their baby’s health, and several other things.
    Regardless of the reason, stress increases the heart’s workload.
  • As treatment, medical practitioners have their pregnant patients go through a diagnostic evaluation to eliminate possibilities of cardiac, pulmonary, metabolic, endocrine, and other underlying diseases, after which, precipitating factors are also eliminated. These include too much caffeine consumption, cigarette smoking, or drug abuse.
  • Antiarrhythmic drugs are also made available to patients but only those that have been proven to be mild enough for pregnant patients. These drugs should be administered in smallest of dosages and its indication should be continually re-assessed during the course of the pregnancy to prevent any kind of serious complications in the baby’s development.

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