Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders Overview
The human heart beats approximately 100,000 times a day or about 35 million times a year. Each heartbeat begins with an electrical impulse within the heart's own electrical network called the conduction system. The electrical impulse of the conductions system starts in the atria or upper chambers of the heart and travels down to the ventricles or lower chambers of the heart to produce a heartbeat. Heart rhythms disorders, also called arrhythmias or dysrhythmias, are a problem with the conduction system that results in irregular heartbeats that are too fast (tachycardia), too slow (bradycardia) and/or irregular (extra or skipped beats). Depending on the specific type, heart rhythm disorders range from harmless to life threatening.
Electrophysiologist and medical director Bradley P. Knight, MD leads the multidisciplinary team of heart rhythm specialists that work closely with the patient’s referring physician to determine the best plan of care for the patient. Whether it is medication, procedures or surgery, or a combination of the three, the most advanced and effective treatment options are available at the Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders.
Patients treated at the Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders also benefit from the clinical research trials that are ongoing at Northwestern Memorial. The focus of the clinical research trails offered through the Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders is to understand the factors that predispose patients to heart rhythm disorders and in developing new, less invasive means of treatment.
Emotional and Behavioral Health
Cardiac treatment is most successful when it focuses on the physical, emotional and behavioral health of the patient. Northwestern's Cardiac Behavioral Medicine service was created with the understanding that the mind and body (the heart, in particular) influence each other.
Kim L. Feingold, PhD, director of Cardiac Behavioral Medicine, Gail M. Osterman, PhD, and Paul Goetz, PhD, are clinical cardiac psychologists that specialize in helping patients and their families adjust to a diagnosis and cope with challenges throughout the course of treatment.
For more information regarding heart rhythm disorders, please call the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at 1-866-662-8467 or request a first time appointment online.
Highlighting the Performance of the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute.
Visit our clinical outcomes microsite.