What causes fast heart rate and palpitations? 18 possible conditions

See a list of possible causes in order from the most common to the least.

1

Abnormal Heart Rhythms

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

An abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia) is a change in the heart's beating pattern. There are many different types with different causes and effects. Possible symptoms are feeling faint, chest pain, and sweating.

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2

Atrial Fibrillation and Flutter

Atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter are irregular heart rhythms that occur when the upper chambers of your heart (the atria) beat too fast.Atrial fibrillation can be sustained or can occur in bursts. It creates a...

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3

Hyperthyroidism

The thyroid gland produces a hormone that controls how your cells use energy (metabolize). Hyperthyroidism occurs when the body produces excessive amounts, causing rapid heart rates, weight loss, and heat intolerance.

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4

Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia (PSVT)

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT) is a faster-than-normal heart rate. It can last from a few minutes to several hours. PSVT is a fairly common type of (arrhythmia) that can occur in a person of any age.

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5

Panic Disorder

Panic disorder is a condition chararcterized by persistent anxiety and recurrent panic attacks. Sweating or chills are possible signs of a panic attack.

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6

Low Blood Sugar (Hypoglycemia)

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Also known as hypoglycemia, low blood sugar can be a dangerous condition. Hypoglycemia is rare in people who are not suffering from diabetes, the chronic disease that affects the body's ability to regulate blood sugar...

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7

High Blood Pressure Overview

High blood pressure (hypertension) increases your risk for heart attack, stroke, coronary heart disease, and other serious health problems. Left untreated, high blood pressure can damage blood vessels and vital organs.

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8

Septic Shock

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Septic shock is a complication of an infection in which toxins can initiate a full-body inflammatory response and organ failure. Confusion, breathing problems, chills, and cold sweats.

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9

Mitral Valve Prolapse

Your mitral valve is located on the left side of your heart, between two chambers, the atrium and the ventricle. Blood is pumped from the left atrium through the mitral valve and into the left ventricle on its way t...

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10

Hypertensive Heart Disease

Hypertensive heart disease refers to heart conditions caused by high blood pressure. Possible signs of acute hypertension include sweating and chills.

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11

Drug Allergy Overview

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

A drug allergy is an allergic reaction to a medication. Your immune system identifies the drug as foreign and acts to eliminate it from your body.

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12

Thyroid Storm

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Thyroid storm is a life-threatening condition that results from undertreated or untreated hyperthyroidism. Persistent sweating is one possible sign of thyroid storm.

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13

Ventricular Septal Defects

A ventral septal defect (VSD) is a hole between the heart's lower chambers (ventricles). It can lead to difficulty breathing and pale or bluish skin, especially around the lips and fingernails.

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14

The Deadly Potential of Digitalis: Digitalis Toxicity

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Digitalis toxicity happens when you take too much digitalis, a medication for heart conditions. This results in nausea, vomiting, chills and sweating.

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15

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

Congestive heart failure is a chronic condition that affects the four chambers of the heart. Early symptoms include fatigue and weight gain. Irregular heart beat and wheezing indicate a worsening.

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16

Agoraphobia

Agoraphobia is an anxiety disorder that causes people to avoid situations that might cause them to feel trapped, helpless, embarrassed, or scared. It's more common in women than it is in men.

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17

Myocarditis

Myocarditis is inflammation of the heart muscle. It is a rare condition that can be caused by any number of autoimmune diseases, viral, bacterial, or fungal infections, or parasites. When you have an infection or a...

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18

Alcoholic Cardiomyopathy

Alcoholic cardiomyopathy is a form of heart disease caused by alcohol abuse. Long-term alcohol abuse weakens and thins the heart muscle. The damaged muscle cannot pump blood as it should, which deprives the bod...

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This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose.
Please consult a healthcare professional if you have health concerns.
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