My 14 yr old just went for a routine physical in order to play high school football. However, the doctor found that his heart rate was extremely slow. He thinks it may be a blockage. He is going to see a specialist on Friday. What should I expect and what can be done?
Without knowing how slow your son’s heart rate is, I can’t tell exactly what’s going on. However, what it sounds like his doctor may be referring to is atrioventricular block. If his heart rate is in the 30’s at rest, it could be complete atrioventricular block, which is an interruption in the single electrical connection between the upper and the lower chambers of the heart. If his heart rate is in the 50’s, though, your son may just be in good physical condition. I obviously don’t have that information to be able to say. I would guess, though, that if your son is able to exercise without problems, he likely does not have complete atrioventricular block.
I’m not sure what specialist your son will be seeing. It should be a pediatric (and not an adult) cardiologist. A thorough history and physical examination will be performed, and an electrocardiogram (ECG) will likely be performed. Depending on the findings from these 3 sets of information, your son will either be found to be normal or, if there are concerns or abnormalities, he may require further testing. Other potential kinds of testing include an echocardiogram, which is a cardiac ultrasound, a 24-hour Holter monitor, which records all the electrical activity of the heart for one full day, and an exercise stress test, which assesses exercise tolerance as well as the heart rate and electrical system response to exercise.
It is extremely improbable, though not impossible for your son to have a blockage of the coronary arteries.
More likely, he was talking about an arrhythmia called heart block. The electrical system for the most part is out of my area of knowledge. Most likely he'll get a EKG, and depending on that, he may get other tests. What you'll get from the specialist is the ability to discern if it is just something to note, or if it needs further investigation.
Copyright 1994-2017MedHelp International.All rights reserved. MedHelp is a division of Aptus Health.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.