Holter monitoring (Holter monitoring): what is it, photo
Holter monitoring of the heart often prescribed to patients with cardiovascular pathologies to monitor the activities of the authority during the day. This study allows for a sufficiently long period to monitor the work of the heart and to detect possible causes of certain diseases.
Holter monitoring: what is it?
In fact, the Holter monitoring of the heart is the same electrocardiogram, but it is written from one day to three days. The recording is performed continuously for a prescribed period, and then decrypts the obtained results by a cardiologist. Holter research — not the latest method, its existence has more than 50 years. The diagnosis is being made with the help of a special device — ECG Holter. So-called portable recorder fixing for a long time information about the heart muscle. ECG-Holter is small in size, so they can be used up to three days.
The device is installed is very simple: the patient’s chest and attach electrodes connected by wires to a small box (he ECG Holter). The latter is usually attached to a belt, pants, put in a pocket etc wearing the device usually does not cause any inconvenience to patients, with it you can easily engage in the usual activities.
In addition to informativeness and simplicity, Holter monitoring has other advantages. First, this diagnostic method has no contraindications, and it can be applied to all patients, regardless of age, sex, presence of other diseases, etc. in addition, the Holter monitor does not require special training, so you can assign it any day and start exploring immediately.
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What is important to know about the procedure?
First, that the interests of patients is the number of doctor visits. Actually for removing indicators only two visits. For the first time to the patient attach the device, tell the peculiarities of diagnostics, etc. it Usually takes 10 – 15 minutes, no more. The second visit involves removing the ECG Holter, an evaluation of the results and to prescribe treatment. Depending on the complexity of the situation, it may take half an hour to an hour or more.
Another feature of diagnosis is that the doctor may ask you to keep a special diary. It will need to record that and what time you are doing. Overall, it will just schedule day mode with some amendments down the stairs, notations head, etc.
Why is it necessary? The fact that our heart is very sensitive to any emotional and physical stress due to the endocrine and nervous systems. So the doctor not only has to find abnormalities in heart activity, but also to compare them with what is causing the problem: nervousness, quarrels, minor or moderate physical activity, sleep, and more. In addition, don’t forget that ECG-Holter — quite an expensive camera, its price is 300 000 rubles and above. It must be handled very carefully, do not drop the device, watering it or exposing too high or too low temperatures.
Indications for research
Holter monitoring is performed for diagnosis of many cardiovascular diseases. In some situations, this method of study prescribed, even when direct evidence for monitoring is not, however, on the basis of already obtained results of other methods of diagnosis the doctor make a diagnosis can not.
In any case, the main indications for Holter studies include:
- Different types of arrhythmias (rhythm disturbances of the heart).
- Angina (a form of ischemic heart disease, manifested in a sharp squeezing chest pain – «angina pectoris»).
- Coronary heart disease.
- The identification of certain symptoms of oxygen starvation.
- Arterial hypertension and hypotension.
Among the symptoms which should make us reflect on the necessity of Holter monitoring, we distinguish:
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- constant or periodic pain in the heart area, constant, spontaneous, or appear with certain types of physical activity;
- shortness of breath;
- headache of different etiology and localization;
- pain and heaviness in the region of the sternum;
- dizziness and fainting;
- morning sickness;
- drowsiness during the day and other sleep problems.
Types of Holter monitoring
Depending on the duration of the procedure distinguish between partial and full diagnostics. In the first case, the patient, feeling the pain behind the breastbone or arrhythmia, presses the special button, and the unit begins the check of the heart. This method is rarely used, usually only for the evaluation of patients with arrhythmia.
Full-scale monitoring more familiar to most patients, cardiac spectrum. The so-called normal Holter study, designed for extended diagnostics. Interestingly, in contrast to the ECG which can record approximately 50 cardiac cycles, ECG-Holter collects information about 100 000. In some cases, special sensors are implanted under the skin of the patient, and monitoring is carried out throughout the year.
Remember that to schedule, conduct and evaluate the results of Holter examination can only highly skilled. Trust only the professionals and be healthy!