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Heart Rhythm

Adventist Hinsdale Hospital’s Electrophysiology (EP) lab uses the latest technology to record the electrical impulses that flow through the heart. EP testing can pinpoint the exact location and  cause of an abnormal heart beat, as well as illuminate the best treatment.

Our EP testing is performed by an electrophysiologist, a physician who specializes in the diagnoses and treatment of abnormal heart rhythms. During EP testing, the electrophysiologist inserts catheters into the vein in the patient’s groin. The electrophysiologist threads the catheters to the heart guided by a fluoroscopy machine, a device that provides real time imaging of the heart’s activity.

The patient is sedated but not put to sleep. The catheters sense and record the electrical activity of the heart. The electrophysiologist can safely reproduce the patient’s abnormal heart beat and try different medications to see which one works best.

Some irregular heartbeats cannot be treated with medication. Various other treatments may include cardioversion (electrical shock), pacemakers and catheter ablation (see below). More than 200 defibrillators and pacemakers are implanted annually within our facilities.

EP Treatments

  • EP Studies: The electrophysiologist will guide special electrode catheters (long, thin, flexible wires) to the heart, normally through the groin area to determine which area of the heart is responsible for an irregular heartbeat.
  • Mapping and Recording: The use of technology to pinpoint the exact location of electrical signals for catheter ablations.
  • Ablation: Ablation blocks or scars the abnormal electrical circuits or irritable areas that trigger a heart problem. During an EP study a special wire carrying radiofrequency energy is used to cauterize the site of an arrhythmia. Catheter ablation is an outpatient procedure that normally takes only a couple of hours to complete and has few complications.
  • Device Implants
    • Dual and Single Chamber Pacemakers
    • Implantable Cardiac Defibrillator

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