Feeling like your heart is beating too fast is a scary situation. Maybe you’ve also been feeling dizzy or had chest pain. You might wonder if you’re headed for cardiac arrest. These could be signs you have a heart arrhythmia, like ventricular tachycardia.
The heart and vascular experts at UVA Health can answer your questions. We’re always exploring ways to manage and treat heart rhythm problems. Our arrhythmia care was the first of its kind in Virginia. And, we've been nationally recognized and received several awards for our heart care. Becker’s Hospital Review named UVA Health’s Heart & Vascular Center to its 2023 list of 100 hospitals and health systems with great heart programs.
See other awards and recognition for our heart care.
Ventricular Tachycardia Treatment at UVA Health
Ventricular tachycardia (v tach) can be hard to treat. But at UVA Health, we use the latest treatments to control and prevent it. We treat v tach with the following options.
Medicines can treat some forms of ventricular tachycardia. But these drugs can have serious side effects. We also offer procedures and treatments that might be safer and more comfortable for you.
We're specialists in catheter ablation. This procedure use a small flexible tube (catheter) to burn or freeze (cryoablation) the parts inside you causing the fast heartbeat.
An implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) is a small battery-operated device. It's put inside your body. It watches your heart’s rhythm and treats v tach by giving you an electric shock.
If these treatments don't work for you, you may need a heart transplant. We've performed over 300 heart transplants. That makes us the top heart transplant center in Virginia.
Cardiac Arrest in Front of Millions
Christian Eriksen, a 29-year-old soccer star from Denmark, nearly lost his life in front of millions at the World Cup. He had cardiac arrest brought on by ventricular fibrillation, a dangerous heart arrhythmia. He was saved by the quick use of an AED.
Ventricular tachycardia is a common but serious heart condition. If you have heart disease or a have had heart attack, you're more likely to get v tach. But sometimes healthy people with normal hearts get it too.
It happens when your heart beats too fast. Because of it, your lower heart chambers can't fill with enough blood. And they have trouble pumping that blood out to your body.
Ventricular fibrillation (vfib) is a kind of dangerous v tach. In vfib, there are too many electric pulses to your lower heart. Your heart is beating too fast and the extra signals make the pumping action chaotic. It can't pump blood.
If you have an episode of v tach, you might not feel any symptoms. But in some people, it can be severe. It can lead to sudden cardiac arrest. Symptoms include:]'[[p;;;;;;
- Fast heart rate
- Racing, pounding, or skipping heartbeat
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Passing out
- Sudden death