Tachycardia induced cardiomyopathy or tachycardiomyopathy is a condition in which the heart does not function properly due to an unusually fast rate of heart known as tachycardia. Disease caused by weakening of myocardium is termed as cardiomyopathy. Deviation that leads to tachycardia is yet not clear. It has been associated with several types of disorders such as
- atrial fibrillation: abnormal heart rhythm involving the upper chambers of the heart.
- atrial flutter: abnormal heart rhythm involving the atrium of the heart.
- persistent supraventricular tachycardia: a fast heart rate that originates above the ventricular tissue.
- ventricular tachycardia: a fast heart rate that originates in one of the ventricles of the heart.
Some of the theories regarding the mechanism of tachycardiomyopathy include abnormal calcium handling, depletion of energy stores in the heart muscle, chronic ischemia and so on. This disease can happen at any age.
There is no specific test to diagnose tachycardia induced cardiomyopathy. A condition of systolic dysfunction which refers to impaired contraction of ventricles (lower chambers of heart) that cannot be explained shows a possibility of tachycardia induced cardiomyopathy. It may also occur in association with other heart diseases.
Echocardiography, cardiac catheterization and coronary angiography are some of the tests that are used for the diagnosis of the disease.
The disease can be treated by removing the situation that caused it, that is by removing the tachycardia. The heart muscle can recover if the fast heart rate is abolished. Normalizing the heart rate may in turn normalize the systolic dysfunction.
The disease can be completely cured by removing the tachycardia. Therefore it is important to identify this disease since it is a potentially reversible condition which may otherwise lead to heart failure.
The heart rate is considered controlled if the response is between 60 bpm (beats per minute) and 80 bpm at rest, and 90 to 115 bpm during exercise. Besides removing the fast heart rate, it is also important to eliminate the causes that lead to the Tachycardia.