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What is Electrophysiology?

What is Electrophysiology?

When the heart’s own natural systems for setting a regular heart pace do not function properly, these are considered “electrical” cardiac problems. These abnormal heart functions are called arrhythmias and can cause the heart to beat too rapidly, too slowly or even skip beats. Memorial’s Heart and Vascular Center offers cardiac electrophysiology that diagnose and treat abnormal rhythms in the heart.

Electrophysiology (EP) studies are the tests that help doctors understand the cause of abnormal heart rhythms. These tests are used to check and assess your heart’s electrical system or activities and use those results to diagnose abnormal hearts and arrhythmia and establish an effective treatment plan.

The physicians and clinical staff at the Heart and Vascular Center perform this test by inserting a needle through the skin, into the blood vessels and send small electronic pulses through the catheter to measure how your heart beats at different speeds. These results are recorded, and images are created.

The team at the Heart and Vascular Center will work together to put together a treatment plan that can include, but is not limited to the following:

  • Atrial Fibrillation Ablation – A procedure to remove faulty electrical pathways from the heart, ones which cause arrhythmias (or irregular heartbeats)

  • Cardioversion – A procedure to correct irregular heartbeats.

  • Defibrillator – A device that delivers electrical energy to the heart in order to help correct abnormal heart rhythms and “reset” the body’s natural heartbeat.

  • Pacemaker – A device is implanted just under the skin of the chest to send electronic impulses to the heart, which allows the heart to beat with regular timing.

To learn more about the Heart and Vascular Center at Lake Charles Memorial Health System, click here.

Additional Resource: American Heart Association