Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders Overview
The human heart beats approximately 100,000 times a day—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 conduction 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.
At Northwestern Memorial’s Center for Heart Rhythm Disorders at the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute, we take a team approach to treating patients with heart rhythm disorders. Electrophysiologist and medical director Bradley P. Knight, MD leads the multidisciplinary team of heart rhythm specialists (including electrophysiologists, surgeons, nurses and more) that work closely with our patient’s referring physicians. Together with our patients, we determine the best plan of care.
Treatment options for heart rhythm disorders
- Treatments for atrial fibrillation like medication, ablation or surgery
- Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT): re-setting the heart’s rhythm with an implantable device like a pacemaker
- Cardioversion: a non-surgical method for changing an irregular heart rhythm to a healthy one
- Implantable cardioverter defibrillators: using a device to monitor heart rhythms and restoring healthy rhythms when needed
Heart rhythm disorders and clinical research
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.
For more information regarding clinical trials related to heart rhythm disorders, please view the page, send an email or call 312-926-4000.
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Among the Nation's Best
In 2013-14 U.S. News & World Report ranked our Cardiology and Heart Surgery program #12 in the nation and the highest ranked program in Illinois for the sixth straight year.