For extended-period heart rhythm analysis, a Holter monitor is a small 24-hour EKG recorder that patients can carry with them.
Many patients may experience periodic episodes of chest pain, dizziness or palpitations that a 60-second EKG in a doctor's office will not detect. A Holter monitor is a portable EKG recorder, about the size of a Walkman or iPod, that the patient can wear for an entire day as they conduct their daily routine. When symptoms occur, the Holter monitor records the heart rhythms, which can be played back later for diagnosis by a cardiologist at Phoebe.
How the test works
The Holter monitor is carried in a small pouch usually hung from the neck by a strap. Small electrode patches are attached with an adhesive to the patient's chest as with an EKG and connected to the Holter monitor with thin wires. The patient wears the monitor for a day while going about their normal activities. During that time, the patient also records activities (such as walking the dog) or symptoms (chest pain, dizziness, etc.) with the time they occurred so they can be referenced by the time on the recording.
When the test is complete, a technician loads the test results into a computer and produces a paper record for the cardiologist to evaluate.
For more information about heart treatment options or to schedule an appointment, please call the Phoebe Heart and Vascular Center at (229) 312-4438.