Close up of a pacemake on Electrocardiograph

The cardiologist will investigate whether there are heart problems, such as conduction abnormalities, abnormal heart rhythm or weakening of the heart muscle (cardiomyopathy). If needed, a pacemaker or implantable defibrillator can be implanted. Occasionally, medication will be prescribed.

Pacemaker

When a conduction disturbance is present, electrical signals do not move through the heart in the normal way. This may cause the heart to beat very slow. A pacemaker may then be indicated. The pacemaker has a sensor that guards the heart rthyth. The pacemaker will give an electrical pulse, once the heart beats too slow, in order to restore the normal rhythm.

Implantable defibrillator (ICD)

For potential life-threatening rhythm disturbances, an implantable defibrillator may sometimes be needed. This is a small device, placed under the skin. If the heart rhythm is too fast, the ICD will give one or more electrical shocks to restore a normal rhythm.