Heart & Cardiology/palps


I am an otherwise healthy 42 y/o guy. No smoker, healthy lifestyle, ect. I have a history of palpitations (sometimes severe). I can have them for months and then go months without anyone. The can be described as a flutter or skipped, ect. Over the lat 4 years I have had dozens of EKG’s, echocardiogram, holirot monior, 30 day Cardionet monitoring on 2 occasions, blood work, chest x-rays, BNP labs and a cardiac calcium score of 0. I see my cardiologist yearly as a check-up. He says beta blockers are available depending on how it is affecting my life. IM an anxious person by nature and he claims they are common and some people don’t feel them. My question is this- at every visit, I get a 12 lead EKG. Can a 12 lead EKG read by a cardiologist show indicate cardiomypolhies, enlarged heart, valve problems, ect? I realize an echo is preferred but I was wondering what this yearly EKG could indicate.

Hi, some reading regarding palpitations, http://blog.myheart.net/2014/07/30/pvc-heart-beats-are-they-dangerous/.

The good news is that you have had extensive testing that all appears to point toward no underlying structural heart disease. Furthermore your monitoring did not appear to pick up any significant or dangerous arrhythmia. Its therefore likely that your palpitations are more of an annoyance rather than dangerous.

Sometimes beta blockers are of use and result in a symptomatic improvement and it may be reasonable to try them and see your response.

A 12 lead EKG is useful in the yearly follow up to ensure no underlying development of baseline heart rhythm or conduction disorders. Although the EKG is not as specific as an echo in the detection of underlying structural heart disease, in the absence of a clinical change or development of new symptoms an echo is not always indicated and your cardiologist can determine the need for this based on your check up.

Hope that was helpful,  

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Mustafa Ahmed MD


Cardiology, Interventional Cardiology, Cardiac Surgery, Hypertension, Pulmonary Embolism, Structural and Valve Disease


Board Certification Internal Medicine and Cardiology Interventional and Structural Cardiology


Multiple Publications In High Quality Peer Reviewed Journals. Internationally Recognized.

MD from The Royal Victoria University of Manchester, England Medicine, Cardiology, Interventional Cardiology, Research Training - University of Alabama

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