A Holter Monitor is a cell phone-sized ECG (electrocardiogram) recording device. It operates on a battery and is attached to the patient’s body using an electrode and cable to record their heart rhythm and heartbeat for 24 hours or more.
The Holter Monitor device, also called Ambulatory Electrocardiography, is predominantly recommended by doctors when:
Like an ECG machine, the Holter monitor records your heart's rate and rhythm. It is also used similarly to the standard EKG or ECG. The device comes with electronic leads or wires and electrodes or sensors. These sensors are attached to your chest and abdomen and connected to an ECG machine to measure your heart’s activity.
The Holter monitor is safe to use and does not require electricity to record your heartbeat. It works silently, monitoring your heart’s electrical activity as you perform your routine work. The recorded heart activity can also be recorded and printed for further use.
Using the Holter monitor, your doctor will:
The Holter monitor test is a simple procedure requiring no special preparation. You can go about your daily routine and have your regular meals. In short, being as normal as possible will help give accurate results.
You must bathe or shower before your appointment for a Holter monitor placement. The monitor must stay on continuously for 1-2 days until the recording is complete, so it's important to be clean and comfortable before the procedure.
A clinical assistant will shave your chest area where the electrodes are placed. The electrodes have wires connected to the Holter monitor, which is no bigger than a pack of cards.
Your doctor will guide you through the process of wearing a Holter monitor and provide you with instructions. Following the procedure, you can resume your daily routine as usual.
The Holter monitor test is a simple, painless, and non-invasive procedure. Before the process, you should:
During the procedure, your doctor will attach the electrodes to your chest and abdomen. The electrodes are connected to the Holter monitor, which you can wear over your shoulder or around your waist. You can keep it in your pocket or clip it to your belt.
Here are some pointers to keep in mind:
There is no specific post-procedural care for a Holter monitor test. However, you should inform your doctor if you experience any unpleasant symptoms. After the duration, your doctor will remove the device and evaluate the recordings. Based on these results, they will recommend the right course of treatment to alleviate your symptoms, modify your existing medication, or undergo additional diagnostic tests.
Generally, there are no risks associated with the Holter monitor other than some minor discomfort or irritation in the area where the sensors are placed. Holter monitors are usually not affected by other electronic devices. However, some appliances may disrupt the signal from the electrodes to the Holter monitor.
While wearing the monitor, you should not:
Cell phones should also be kept at least 6 inches away from the Holter monitor to prevent signal interference with the Holter monitor.
Holter monitoring is a form of long-duration ECG testing that can uninterruptedly record the heart’s activity for 24 to 48 hours. With this test, your doctor can accurately diagnose how your routine activities impact your heart rhythms.
It is essential to seek medical advice if you experience any uneasy symptoms. Dr. Karthigesan is a leading Interventional Cardiologist in Chennai who can diagnose and help you manage your cardiac issues. He will also recommend the right course of treatment based on your diagnostic test results. Kindly reach out to our team to book your appointment with Dr. Karthigesan.