I was recently diagnosed with atrial bigeminy. Could you tell me what it is and a little bit about its symptoms? How do I know I need to see a doctor for an emergency? Atrial bigeminy is actually a description of a pattern of heart beats that occurrs in couplets. A regular (or sinus) beat is followed by a "premature" atrial beat. These premature beats are the result of electrical impulses sent from other parts of the atrium than the sinus node (our normal pacemaker). Such "extra" or "premature" beats cause more problems for doctors than patients. In reality, they are almost never felt unless we take our own pulse or blood pressure. For the health care worker or patient who takes a blood pressure, premature atrial beats or runs of atrial bigeminy make it difficult to get a good reading. The premature beat has a lower blood pressure as the heart hasn't had sufficient time to fill with blood. As the normal beat may have a higher pressure, the measur...
Chest pains are frequently a part of anxiety attacks. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-IV) lists chest pains as a symptom of panic disorder and is common in other types of anxiety disorders as well. Chest pains, as a part of anxiety, are not normally considered to be dangerous. But chest pains can also signal a heart attack and require immediate medical care. For someone experiencing a sudden panic attack, complete with chest pains, it may be difficult to know the difference and to know whether or not to seek medical care. What is Chest Pain? Chest pain or discomfort occurs between the neck and the upper abdomen and is located in the front of the body. It can be caused by both serious and benign reasons. There are a number of organs and tissues in the chest area that can cause pain or discomfort in addition to the heart. The lungs and esophagus as well as the ribs, various muscles and tendons which can become inflamed due to illness or injury and caus...
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