Causes of Arrhythmias (Heart Rhythm Disturbances)
- The heart's natural pacemaker (sinoatrial node) develops an abnormal rate or rhythm.
- Injury or illness makes it difficult or impossible for electrical signals to move through the heart. Injury or illness may occur due to:
- Electrical stimulation arises from abnormal areas of the heart, other than the sinoatrial node.
- Stimulants—Makes the heart beat faster even though there is no need.
- Electrolyte abnormalities—Can increase or decrease the ability for muscles to contract and change ability of nerves to send signals.
- Illegal stimulants, such as cocaine and methedrine
- Diet pills
- Some over-the-counter medications, such as cough and cold medicines
- Certain prescription medications, such as those that treat cardiovascular disease, asthma , depression , or thyroid disorders.
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