Welcome to Cleveland Clinic Online Health Chats

Get answers to your health questions and concerns. It's easy to be part of our live chat events, led by Cleveland Clinic physicians and health professionals.

Arrythmias in Adults & Children
Tuesday, June 5, 2018 - 12 Noon (Eastern Time)

Sign up for this chat today.Register Now

Prior to a scheduled chat, click Join Chat to submit a question early.You will be asked to login if you aren't already logged in.Join Chat

Peter Aziz, MD

  • Pediatric Cardiology

Mina Chung, MD

  • Cardiology

Irregular or abnormal heart beats, called arrhythmias, occur when there are abnormal electrical impulses in your heart, causing your heart to beat too fast, too slow or irregularly. Arrhythmias are very common and are often a mere annoyance. However, they can also be responsible for life-threatening medical emergencies that result in cardiac arrest and sudden death. The most common irregular heart rhythm is called Atrial fibrillation (AF or AFib) and involves the two upper chambers (atria) of the heart. Over 2 million Americans are affected by AFib and it is responsible for 15% of all strokes. Please join us to have your arrhythmia questions answered by pediatric cardiologist Peter Aziz, MD and staff cardiologist Mina Chung, MD.

Arrhythmia treatment depends on the type and severity of the arrhythmia. Treatment options may include medications, lifestyle changes, invasive therapies, electrical devices or surgery. In some cases, no treatment will be necessary. Devices, such as a permanent pacemaker, are used to send small electrical impulses to the heart muscle to maintain a normal heart rate; most pacemakers are used to prevent the heart from beating too slowly.

Irregular heart rhythms can also occur in normal, healthy hearts. Arrhythmias can also be caused by certain substances or medications, such as caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, cocaine, inhaled aerosols, diet pills, and cough and cold remedies. Emotional states such as shock, fright or stress can also cause irregular heart rhythms.

In most cases, treating the underlying condition will take care of the arrhythmia. If not, many medications and procedures are available to eliminate or control the abnormal heart rhythm.

Dr. Aziz completed his pediatric cardiology fellowship at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia in 2010 and continued his training there in pediatric electrophysiology. During his fellowship, Dr. Aziz was awarded a training grant under the National Institute of Health (NIH) to investigate genotype and phenotype correlations in pediatric patients with long QT syndrome. Dr. Aziz also acquired skills in catheter ablation of pediatric arrhythmias and device (pacemaker and ICD) implantation. Following his fellowship, Dr. Aziz joined the Cleveland Clinic as a pediatric electrophysiologist. He is active in the training and teaching of medical students, residents and fellows, an activity that continuously inspires him. Dr. Aziz is also quite active in research and was the recent recipient of the SADS 2011 Young Investigator Award for his work on long QT syndrome.

Dr. Aziz acquired skills in Catheter Ablation of pediatric arrhythmias and device implantation which is a regular part of his clinical practice.

Mina K. Chung, MD, is a Staff Cardiologist in the Section of Pacing and Electrophysiology, The Robert and Suzanne Tomsich Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, at Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Chung is board-certified in internal medicine and in the subspecialties of cardiovascular disease and clinical cardiac electrophysiology, which is her specialty interest.

Dr. Chung did her undergraduate work at the University of California at San Diego, graduating with a major in chemistry, and she was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa, the national honor society. She received her medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, where she completed her internship and residency in internal medicine at the Jewish Hospital of the Washington University School of Medicine, becoming Chief Resident. She received fellowships in research and in cardiology from the Jewish Hospital, followed by a fellowship in cardiac electrophysiology from Barnes Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine, during which she received the Michael Bilitch Fellowship Award in Cardiac Pacing and Electrophysiology from the North American Society of Pacing and Electrophysiology.

This Health Chat is currently open to allow you to submit questions. We will try to answer as many questions as possible during the chat. Please create an account to attend the chat and submit your questions.