BSIP, JOUBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY BSIP, JOUBERT / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Cardiac arrhythmia. Computer illustration of a sectioned heart behind two electrocardiogram (ECG) traces showing the irregular beating of the heart during cardiac arrhythmia. An ECG measures the electrical activity of the heart. The heart's main blood vessels (upper centre) and chambers (red & green) can be seen. Irregular beating of the heart is usually due to a blockage in the coronary arteries (not seen) that supply the heart muscle with oxygen. The blockage may be as a result of a blood clot or the narrowing of the artery walls due to a build up of fatty plaques of atheroma (atherosclerosis). These can cause a heart attack (myocardial infarction) as heart muscle dies.
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