What Is Atrial Tachycardia?
Atrial tachycardia is one of several heart problems which can cause heart arrhythmia. The problem stems from an abnormal cardiac rhythm which occurs when the electrical impulses which regulate the heartbeat originate in the wrong area of the heart. It does have a low morbidity rate, but in children who are born with this heart abnormality the death risk is somewhat higher.
Atrial tachycardia arises from a small area (focus) of tissue, anywhere in the atria of the heart (see diagram). This focus starts to fire and drive the heart, more rapidly than the heart’s natural pacemaker. Usually, the focus fires only intermittently (this is sometimes known as paroxysmal atrial tachycardia) but occasionally it can continue for days or even persist for months at a time.