Your Child Has Cardiac Arrhythmia. Now What?

Child in Hospital BedIt’s normal to worry if your child is diagnosed with an abnormal heart rate by a pediatric cardiology specialist. However, by educating yourself about your child’s condition, you’ll be able to help put your own fears to rest and better care for your child.

What Is Cardiac Arrhythmia?

When your child is diagnosed with cardiac arrhythmia, it means that a change or irregularity in their heartbeat was found. In these cases, the heart may beat too fast or too slow. Extra beats and skipped beats also indicate cardiac arrhythmia.

There are multiple reasons a child may develop a cardiac arrhythmia. It can arise due to physical causes such as a heart defect. An arrhythmia can also be caused by fever, infection or certain medications.

In many cases, a cardiac arrhythmia is not a cause for concern. However, some cases can pose a serious health risk. If your child is diagnosed with cardiac arrhythmia, your doctor and pediatric cardiology care team will let you know more.

Your pediatric cardiology team will discuss the type and severity of the condition, along with your child’s treatment options.

Know Your Child

It’s important to know the symptoms that may indicate your child has cardiac arrhythmia, which often go unnoticed. If your child experiences the following symptoms, make sure to follow up with a physician.

  • Does your child experience episodes of weakness or dizziness?
  • Has your child mentioned they feel unusual heartbeats?
  • Does a specific activity trigger the arrhythmia?
  • Are family members or your child able to do something to make it stop?
  • Has your child ever fainted?

Certain medications can worsen the effects of cardiac arrhythmia. Tell your doctor and pediatric cardiology team about any medications your child has taken recently.