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Why do I have a fast heart beat?

Q: I am 29 years old and have some queries about heart related problems. From the last few months, I am experiencing a very fast heart beat. It is so fast that I can literally listen to my heart beats. It does not happen often but sometimes only. I consulted a doctor and after taking my ECG and measuring my blood pressure, he found nothing wrong. He was also convinced that my heart beats are fast. He prescribed me few medicines and after taking that I was feeling comfortable. The problem has started again. I am also a smoker and have been smoking from the last 4 years. Is smoking a cause of this? Also tell me how can one keep his heart healthy?

A:You seem to be having some problem with the heart rhythm, known technically as Arrhythmia. Smoking normally has no direct link, but may precipitate the attacks. You must consult a cardiologist to have a precise diagnosis, he may advise a few tests, as the ECG done in the interval between the episodes may be entirely normal. A precise diagnosis is essential, as many forms of arrhythmia can now be cured permanently. As a general rule for a healthy heart, you must quit smoking immediately. Exercise and a healthy diet are other things that can help.

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