Could Your Chronic Fatigue Be a Result of a Cardiac Arrhythmia?

Woman struggling with undiagnosed arrhythmia suffers from chronic fatigue

Cardiac arrhythmias can vary dramatically in their presentation, frequency, intensity, and symptoms. Electrophysiologists like Dr. Tordini see heartbeat irregularities ranging from very slow to extremely fast. While cardiac arrhythmias have been a concern since the dawn of humanity, they have become decidedly worse in recent decades as our overall health, and our hearts have declined.

When we think of cardiac arrhythmia, our minds may think of a racing heart and other standard symptoms. These should not be discounted by any means. However, these heart palpitations, flutters, and feelings of pounding in the chest are not the only symptoms that arrhythmia patients will feel. Chronic fatigue is a widespread concern associated with some fast and alternately slow heartbeats. The diagnosis is made even more challenging to diagnose when patients suffer from, for example, silent atrial fibrillation or Afib. When diagnosing chronic fatigue, the possibility of arrhythmia, especially one that does not have outward symptoms, may not be top of mind for most medical professionals.

Chronic fatigue due to atrial fibrillation, other tachycardias, and even slow heartbeats or bradycardia occur because the heart is not pumping blood efficiently around the body. Every muscle, nerve, and cell in the body needs oxygen to function correctly. When that oxygen is restricted, the body reacts by conserving energy, and fatigue usually follows. A particularly slow heartbeat may be treated with a pacemaker, while faster heartbeats may require medication and procedural solutions like cardiac catheter ablation.

If you have experienced chronic fatigue without any discernible cause, you may wish to speak to an electrophysiologist such as Dr. Tordini to understand if it could be your heart. Of course, several other conditions and diseases may cause chronic fatigue, and working with your primary care physician can point you in the right direction to one or more specialists that can help. Most importantly, don’t just assume there’s nothing you can do!

Please get in touch with our office to schedule an appointment and learn about silent Afib and other causes of chronic fatigue.

Dr. Tordini is a part of Florida Medical Clinic in Tampa

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