Symptoms of heart blockage

A heart block, unlike coronary artery disease, is a disease involving the electrical system of the heart. This is when the heart’s electrical conduction is blocked and therefore, either the heart is getting little signal to beat or no signal to beat at all.

The symptoms of heart blockage is almost similar to CAD only the symptoms’ on-set has little or no warning at all as in light headedness, fainting and palpitations.

Other symptoms of heart blockage include shortness of breath even with little physical exertion or no exertion at all, the feeling of constant fatigue due to the lack of blood oxygen being pumped through the body.

Another symptoms of heart blockage is fainting, again, with little or no warning.

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The patient could be sitting and talking doing nothing strenuous and could faint right there and then. Dizziness and light headedness could also be another symptom of hear block. Chest pain symptoms could be similar from that of a heart attack. The feeling of something heavy sitting on the chest or chest pains radiating to the shoulders, jaw, arms and/or stabbing pain on the chest are symptoms of a heart block and could also be symptoms for CAD.

The symptoms of heart blockage could mean the presence of other conditions as well. Heart block has different types, 1st degree – usually has no symptoms and usually does not need any treatment at all or if need be, medication can treat this type of disease; 2nd degree heart block is when the signal to the heart to pump is blocked before it even reaches the ventricles. This is divided into 2 types: Morbitz and Morbitz II.

Morbitz is when the signal is delayed with each heartbeat to a point where the heart would start skipping beats. One of the symptoms of heart blockage caused by Morbitz is dizzy spells.

Morbitz II is when the signals don’t reach the ventricles but with more irregular pattern. The signals may move to the atria and ventricles normally and at times are it is blocked. This is less common than the first type of Morbitz however it is more severe. Some patients may need a pacemaker to regulate their heart rate.

Third degree heart block is the worst kind. This is when the heart is complete blocked of any signals – this is also known as a complete heart block and this could be fatal. This type needs immediate treatment and the use of a pacemaker to help the heart beat. The pacemaker will need to be replaced every 10 years or so as it does wear out.

Causes of heart block could either be congenital or acquired. Congenital heart block occurs in babies from mothers with autoimmune disease. The antibodies can cross the placenta and damage the baby’s heart and thus leading to congenital heart block.

Acquired heart block could be from a disease, medication, surgery and other conditions however, commonly it is due to damage done to the heart such as a heart attack, CAD, inflammation of the heart muscle, rheumatic fever and cardiomyopathy.

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