Holter Monitor

Holter Monitor is used to monitor the heart by best cardiologist in Singapore availabe at The Harley Street.

Holter Monitor is a small but incredibly useful wearable portable device. These recording device monitors track your heart’s rhythm to determine irregular heartbeats. Providing your doctor with valuable information regarding your heart’s activity.

What Is A Holter Monitor?

Holter Monitors are portable electrocardiograms. If your doctor needs to track your heart’s rhythm, they may suggest wearing one. It’s a simple and relatively non-invasive method to track your heart for 24 to 48 hours, making it an essential tool for ambulatory cardiac monitoring.

Importance Of Monitoring Heart Activity

Heart diseases and other related medical conditions must be monitored and treated accordingly. Monitoring is required if your doctor suspects you may have heart-related issues or is aware of existing conditions. 24 to 48-hour Holter Monitors give your doctor access to long-term and highly accurate readings. With this information, they can suggest the best causes of action before it becomes too big of a problem.

How A Holter Monitor Works?

When an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) doesn’t provide sufficient information to your doctor, they may recommend a Holter Monitor. Generally, Holter Monitors record the heart's electrical activity during a 24 to 48-hour period or sometimes longer. The Holter Monitor is attached to you via electrodes. These then measure and record electrical data from your heart. This data is then transferred to the Holter Monitor, which you will wear on a belt or attach to your clothing. During this process, no electricity is sent into your body, meaning you can go about your daily life. With this information, your doctor can assess your condition at length.

How Long Does The Holter Monitor Need To Be Worn?

Typically, Holter Monitors are worn between 24 and 48 hours. During that time, the monitor should have sufficient data to give your doctor an accurate assessment. While wearing the Holter Monitor, you can continue your daily activities unless your doctor tells you otherwise. Patients often ask, "Can you exercise with a Holter monitor?" Yes, in most cases, regular activities, including mild to moderate exercise, are permitted unless your doctor advises otherwise.

What Are The Do’s And Don’ts While Wearing A Holter Monitor?

The restrictions while wearing a Holter monitor vary. For instance, certain types of Holter Monitors can be worn during a shower, but it's crucial to confirm this with your doctor. While wearing the Holter Monitor, your doctor will most likely request that you keep a diary of your daily activities. Doing so will help to account for any periods of data your doctor wants to look into.

Advantages Of Using A Holter Monitor Over Other Heart Monitoring Devices

While the Holter Monitor records your heart during the entire period of wearing, other heart monitors may not. For example, other heart monitors such as the Event Monitors only record when you are experiencing symptoms. As such, a Holter Monitor may provide your doctor with more valuable information than other heart monitors, depending on the specifics of their search. During your consultation, your cardiologist will walk you through the best options.

Who Needs A Holter Monitor?

As Holter Monitors track your heart’s rhythm, they are typically recommended for those experiencing heart problems.

When A Doctor Might Prescribe It?

Holter Monitors can be prescribed for a number of purposes.

  • Assessing chest pain that your doctor cannot replicate with exercise testing.
  • Evaluating the source of potentially heart related symptoms:
    • Tiredness
    • Shortness of breath
    • Dizziness
    • Fainting
  • Understand irregular heartbeats or palpitations
  • Assess the risk of heart-related events following previous events
  • Evaluate a pacemaker
  • Assess treatment for complex arrhythmias

These are just some of the reasons your doctor may suggest a Holter Monitor. Always speak with your doctor if you are unsure why you have been recommended a procedure.

Medical Conditions That May Require A Holter Monitor

If you are experiencing a medical condition related to your heart, your doctor may suggest a Holter Monitor. These conditions include the following:

How To Prepare For The Holter Monitor Test?

Preparing for a Holter Monitor test is relatively simple compared to many procedures. As it is non-invasive, you don’t need to worry about serious preparations. Unlike many procedures, you aren’t required to fast.

How The Holter Test Is Administered?

Holter Tests are quite simple and follow a standard set of procedures.

  1. Firstly, you will be asked to remove any jewellery that may interfere with the reading.
  2. Then you will be required to remove clothing from above your waist. During this time, you will be provided with a sheet or a gown which will leave only the necessary skin exposed.
  3. Before the electrode patches are applied, the relevant areas will be cleared of hair.
  4. Your doctor will then attach the electrodes and provide you with the Holter Monitor. This may be wearable or clipped to your belt/pocket.

What Patients Should Expect Before The Test?

Prior to your Holter test, your doctor will run through everything with you. As there are no requirements or preparations, you can rest easy.

What Patients Should Expect During The Test?

As you have read above, the Holter Monitor test is quite simple. There is no pain involved. The electrode patches may initially feel unusual, but you should quickly get used to them. Your doctor must remove hair from areas where electrode patches need to stick. As with the rest of the procedure, this will be done carefully, and you will be informed beforehand.

What Patients Should Expect After The Test?

Following the test, you can now return to your daily activities. Due to their simplicity, there are no real risks involved with a Holter Monitor. There are some cases of patients feeling minor discomfort on the skin and skin irritation, though this is rare. It is important to note that if, whilst wearing the Holter Monitor, you feel:

  • Lightheaded
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pounding, fluttering or skipped heartbeats

You should speak to your doctor immediately.

What The Holter Test Results Normally Mean?

Following the Holter Test, your doctor can now assess the results. Your doctor will quickly learn if you have any existing heart conditions. As well as if any medicines you are taking aren’t working effectively. From there, they can suggest further treatment, medicine or tests.

On the other hand, if you didn’t experience any irregular heart rhythms whilst wearing the monitor, you may need to take it a step further. Wireless Holter Monitors and Event Recorders can provide different levels of information that may be valuable to your doctor.

What To Do If The Results Are Abnormal?

If your results show a heart condition, your doctor will walk you through the next steps. At The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre, our doctors put patient care first, ensuring that you feel comfortable and cared for during this time.

Why The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre Is The Best Choice For Holter Monitoring?

If you are noticing any of the following symptoms, it’s recommended that you speak to a doctor. The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre doctors are highly experienced in administering Holter Monitors and analysing the results. Providing you with the right care for your situation is crucial. Particularly when it comes to heart conditions. Our dedicated team will be with you every step of the way to ensure that you understand your situation and your options. Booking an appointment at The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre is simple, click here to learn more.

Frequently Asked Questions About Holter Monitor

Can I exercise or shower while wearing a Holter Monitor?

Some monitors can be worn while exercising and in the shower. Check with your doctor first.

What should I do if my Holter Monitor detects an abnormal heart rhythm?

If your Holter Monitor detects an abnormal heart rhythm, this data will be provided to your doctor when they analyse it. If you feel lightheaded, have chest pains, shortness of breath or pounding, fluttering or skipped heartbeats, you should contact your doctor immediately.

What is the difference between a Holter monitor and an ECG?

A Holter monitor records heart activity continuously over 24-48 hours, providing a detailed view of heart rhythms. An ECG is a brief test that captures heart rhythm at a specific moment. This makes Holter monitors more effective for detecting intermittent heart issues.

What are the potential risks or side effects of wearing a Holter Monitor?

There are no side effects or potential risks of wearing a Holter Monitor. Some patients report minor discomfort from wearing the electrode patches. However, this often is just a result of wearing the patches for extended periods of time. However, if you feel lightheaded, any chest pains, shortness of breath or pounding, fluttering or skipped heartbeats whilst wearing the Holter Monitor, you should contact your doctor immediately.

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