Heart Palpitations

Heart Palpitations

Health problems that affect the heart require immediate treatment to minimize complications and save a person’s life. Our team at iCare ER and Urgent Care understands the urgency of immediate heart treatments, and we offer on-demand emergency services when you need them the most. If you suspect that you are having a problem with your heart, then we encourage you to visit our emergency room as soon as possible.

Signs of Heart Palpitations

Some types of heart palpitations are completely normal, while others are a red flag for a serious health condition. Only an experienced medical expert can help you determine the cause of your heart palpitations and whether treatment is needed. It is important to be informed about common signs of palpitations, so you know when to visit the emergency room.

The most common description of heart palpitations is the feeling you have when your heart is pounding or racing. For example, the sensation you experience after sprinting up a flight of stairs.

If you have palpitations, then your heart might feel like it is:

  • Beating too strongly
  • Beating too quickly
  • Beating in irregular patterns
  • Skipping heartbeats
  • Fluttering rapidly
  • Flip-flopping in the chest

What Causes Heart Palpitations?

While a heart condition can be an underlying cause of palpitations, other unrelated health concerns can contribute to these symptoms.

Common causes of palpitations include:

  • A strong emotional response (anxiety, stress, or panic)
  • Strenuous exercise
  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • Stimulants, such as cocaine, nicotine, and caffeine
  • Medications with pseudoephedrine (often in cough or cold medications)
  • Hormonal changes
  • Abnormal heart rhythm

Should You Visit an ER for Heart Palpitations?

In a healthy person, the intensity of the heartbeat will subside within a minute or so after running up the stairs. But if your palpitations don’t go away quickly, then you might need to head to your local emergency room.

Pay attention to other symptoms that are accompanying the heart palpitations.

If the palpitations are occurring with the following list of symptoms, then you should head to the ER without delay:

  • Fainting
  • Chest pain
  • Chest discomfort
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath

When the palpitations are caused by something other than a heart condition, then you have minimal risk of serious complications. But palpitations caused by a heart problem can lead to cardiac arrest, heart failure, or stroke.

ER Services for Heart Palpitations

When you visit our emergency room, we will determine the underlying cause of the palpitations. Tests might include an electrocardiogram (ECG), echocardiogram, heart monitoring, and more. Once a diagnosis is determined, then a treatment plan can be designed to help with the underlying condition. If it is determined that heart palpitations are not caused by a heart condition, then the doctor will provide recommendations to help you avoid the triggers that led to the episode. Don’t hesitate to visit with our experienced ER team if you suspect that medical treatment is needed. Not only do we offer emergency services, but our clinic also includes Urgent Care where you can access general medical care. We complete an initial examination when you arrive to determine the appropriate level of care for your condition.

Seeking Medical Care

Since heart conditions can be some of the most serious health risks, we recommend visiting the iCare in Frisco or South Fort Worth immediately if you experience the symptoms listed above. These conditions can be detrimental to your health if you are not treated medically. If you need emergency care for a heart attack, relief from high blood pressure, or anything in between, come in to iCare for treatment.

What to Expect

When you visit the iCare, our team of exceptional and experienced physicians will immediately assess your situation and determine whether you should be treated in the ER or in urgent care. In most cases, patients with heart conditions are sent to the ER, especially if the condition is life threatening.

After a medical history interview and a physical examination, our team may perform further tests, such as chest X-rays, electrocardiograms, echocardiograms, nuclear ventriculograms, cardiac catheterization, or blood tests. Once you are diagnosed, you will be treated in a variety of ways depending on the type and severity of your condition. For congestive heart failure, irregular heartbeats, and high blood pressure, our team may prescribe varying medications and behavioral changes to manage your symptoms. For heart attacks, treatment may range from anti-coagulant medication, thrombolytic therapy, nitrates, ACLS (advanced cardiovascular life support), catheters, or central venous line insertion.