Holter Monitor Specialist

Internal Medicine of Greater New Haven

Internists located in Hamden, CT & West Haven, CT

If you’re having symptoms that suggest you have an issue with your heart, the doctors at Internal Medicine of Greater New Haven may have you wear a Holter monitor for a few days. This device assesses the conductivity of your heart and gives the doctors important information about your heart function. If you live in the Hamden, Connecticut, area and want to find out if you’d benefit from this screening tool, call the office or use the online booking agent to set up a consultation.

Holter Monitor Q & A

What is a Holter monitor?

You wear a Holter monitor to measure and record your heart’s activity. Unlike an ECG, which only gives the doctors an understanding of your heart’s function at a given point in time, a Holter monitor measures your heart continuously for 24-48 hours.

It’s battery-operated and completely portable. You attach the wires to your skin and wear them so the monitor can record your heart’s activity as you do daily activities and sleep.

Why would I need a Holter monitor?

The doctors at Internal Medicine of Greater New Haven may want you to wear a Holter monitor if you have symptoms that suggest a slow, fast, or irregular heartbeat. Other reasons you might wear a Holter monitor for a few days include:

  • To make sure your pacemaker is working properly
  • To determine if you need different medicines for a  heart problem
  • To diagnose symptoms of dizziness or a racing heart rate
  • To evaluate whether your heart is getting enough oxygen to function properly

Is a Holter monitor uncomfortable?

The Holter monitor is about the size of a small camera and is quite convenient. You attach the electrodes to your chest while wearing it, but the cords are thin and unobtrusive. Carry the monitor itself in a pocket or a belt pack. It may also be slung across your shoulders like a purse or carried like a camera around your neck.

It has no risks and isn’t painful to wear. The cords are long enough that you don’t feel restricted, even while sleeping.

What precautions should I take while wearing the monitor?

You wear the monitor all the time, except while bathing, showering, or swimming. You should also remove the monitor while having an X-ray or when in the area of high-voltage or metal detectors.

What records should I keep while wearing the Holter monitor?

You’ll be asked to keep a diary of any symptoms you have while wearing the monitor. Note the time of when they begin and what activity you were doing. These include:

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Dizziness

The doctors can then compare the readings from your monitor and your diary to detect a possible pattern.