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Arrhythmia treatment

Your heart’s rhythm is too important to be out of sync

At Novant Health UVA Health System, our clinical experts are dedicated to delivering the highest-quality care for heart arrhythmias – from diagnosis to treatment and recovery. Treatment depends on the type and severity of your arrhythmia. In some cases, no treatment is necessary. Treatment options include medications, lifestyle changes, invasive therapies, electrical devices, or surgery. Your doctor will work with you to determine the best treatment for your heart arrhythmia.

Learn about the various arrhythmia treatments:

What is an ICD?

An implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) is an electronic device that constantly monitors your heart rhythm. When it detects abnormal heartbeats, it delivers energy to your heart. This causes your heart to beat normal again.

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Implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD)

Why is an ICD needed?

Much like a pacemaker, the ICD is used to treat life-threatening heart rhythms occurring in the heart’s lower chambers. They are often used in these situations:

  • The heart has stopped
  • Rapid, abnormal heart rhythms that cannot be controlled by drugs or other approaches
  • Very weak heart muscle causing increased risk of dangerous heart rhythms

To learn more about ICDs or any of our other heart treatments, contact the Novant Health UVA Health System location nearest you.

At Novant Health UVA Health System, we’re dedicated to supporting you every step of the way. You can count on us to help you get better and stay healthy. Find a Novant Health UVA Health System location near you.


If you have a slow heartbeat due to age or heart damage, you might suffer from symptoms like fatigue, fainting and shortness of breath. These symptoms can take a huge toll on your quality of life. However, a tiny device called a pacemaker can help eliminate these symptoms and give you the chance to lead an independent, healthy life.

At Novant Health UVA Health System, our goal is to help you feel better and stay well. If you suffer from a slow heartbeat, you may be a candidate for a pacemaker.

Our team of experts will work with you to review your medical history and current symptoms. If it is determined that a pacemaker is an appropriate treatment, a device will be implanted under your skin. It will use pain-free, electrical pulses to regulate your heartbeat and help relieve your symptoms.

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Pacemaker insertion

To learn if a pacemaker device is the best option for you or to make an appointment with a heart specialist, find a Novant Health UVA Health System heart & vascular location near you.

Atrial fibrillation treatments

We offer leading-edge medical technology and treatments to help you treat and live with your atrial fibrillation. Talk to your Novant Health UVA Health System provider to learn more about the treatment options below:

  • Medications: Medications may be used to return your heart to its normal rhythm or to prevent blood clots and reduce your risk of stroke.
  • Electrical cardioversion: The doctor applies an electrical shock to your chest wall to regulate your heartbeat.
  • Catheter ablation: A hollow tube is inserted into your heart through a vessel in the groin or arm. Once the site of the arrhythmia is found, it can be destroyed.
  • Pacemaker: A pacemaker is placed under the skin to treat an irregular heart rate. The artificial pacemaker can send electrical signals to stimulate your heart to beat if your heart's natural pacemaker is not functioning properly.
  • Lifestyle changes: Often, lifestyle changes can treat heart arrhythmia. Your physician may tell you to eliminate substances such as caffeine or alcohol that could cause or contribute to the problem.

Learn more about atrial fibrillation and other types of arrhythmias.