Skip to main content

The heart beats because of the flow of electricity within the heart. An electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG) is a simple test that measures and records the heart’s electrical activity. An EKG shows the details of your child’s heartbeat, including rhythm (steady or irregular) and rate (fast or slow). It also shows the timing of heartbeats as the chambers squeeze and relax with each heartbeat.

A heart (or cardiac) event monitor is a small, portable device that records the heart’s electrical activity for up to 30 days. Doctors use a cardiac event monitor to see whether your child is having unusual heart rates or rhythms (arrhythmias). Cardiac event monitoring is painless and noninvasive, which means it doesn’t enter your child’s body.

At Pediatric Heart Specialists, we diagnose and treat heart conditions in children of all ages, from before birth through young adulthood. With advanced training in pediatric cardiology and related specialties, we provide expert, compassionate care.

A Holter monitor is a small, portable device that continuously records the heart’s electrical activity, called the heart rhythm. Your child wears the monitor for 24 hours or longer during regular activities such as eating, sleeping, going to school and playing.

An arrhythmia is an unusual heartbeat – too fast, too slow or irregular – that varies from the heart’s usual steady rhythm. Arrhythmias make it harder for the heart to pump enough blood to the rest of the body. An abnormal heartbeat in a child can cause symptoms such as heart palpitations, shortness of breath and dizziness.