Common reasons for rhythm monitoring:
To look for rhythm disturbance as a cause of palpitation / dizziness / fainting
To evaluate day-to-night heart rate variation
To quantify burden of arrhythmia / certain rhythm phenomenon e.g. ectopics
How is it done?
Rhythm monitoring may often performed if you experience symptom of palpitation. Depending on the frequency and the exact nature of your symptom, your cardiologists will tailor the test to various duration ambulatory monitoring. The duration can range from 24 hours (Holter) up to 14 days (ePatch). Longer duration monitoring is possible with implantable loop recorder (ILR), and for technology-savvy patients a patient-operated smartphone-enabled rhythm capture device can be purchased for long-term monitoring - with ECG tracing directly transmitted to CardioQinetics by email and immediately reported by our cardiologists.
For 24-48 hours Holter monitoring, you will be asked to wear a small device with 3 electrodes attached to your chest wall via small disposable stickers. You should carry a small notebook / diary and record the exact time and symptom you experience during the recording period.
For ePatch monitoring, you will be asked to wear a small device attached directly to your chest wall. These devices are water-resistant and you can take light shower as normal but you should avoid direct submersion of the device. You should also carry a small notebook / diary to record your symptom with timing - but ePatch device can "mark" or timestamp the events if you gently tap it twice as soon as you experience symptom during the recording period.
For implantable loop recorders, these are tiny indwelling heart rhythm monitor that has a battery life of up to 3 years. They need to be surgically implanted under the skin on your chest wall and the implantation takes approximately 10-15 minutes at our local private hospitals. The procedure is very safe with rare risk (<0.1%) of bleeding, infection, migration, and pain. It is important to note that you may need to explant the device after battery exhaustion.
Who will interpret my results?
For Holter monitoring, our cardiac physiologists will analyse the recording and reporting will usually be completed within 24-48 hours after you return the device.
For ePatch monitoring, you will be provided with an envelope to post the device directly to our analysis laboratory. Analysis and reporting is usually done within 24-48 hours once the analysis laboratory receives the device by post.
For implantable loop recorders, you will have interval appointments with our physiologists to download the data for rhythm monitoring.
If you purchase a personal patient-operated smartphone-enabled rhythm capture device from us, you will be given instruction how to send your data to us for ongoing review.