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Heart Block - Symptoms, Causes and Prevention

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Summary about Heart Block

Heart block is a condition in which the heart beats more slowly or irregularly. It is caused by an issue with the electrical pulses that control how fast your heartbeats. The symptoms vary depending on the type of heart block you have. The mildest type, 1st-degree heart block, may not cause any symptoms. While 2nd-degree heart block can occasionally cause troubling symptoms that require treatment, 3rd-degree heart block, the most severe type, can be a medical emergency.

Heart Block Facts and Figures

According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, anyone can have a heart block but it most commonly occurs in older adults and those who have a history of heart disease. Some facts and statistics about heart block have been listed below:

Incidence of Heart Block0.10%
Common inAdults and Older Adults
At-Risk GenderMales 
Average Age for Diagnosis30 to 60 years
Problems related to Heart BlockLow blood pressure, damage to internal organs, fainting 
Specialists Who Treat Heart BlockCardiac Surgeon

Symptoms of Heart Block

The symptoms of heart block vary according to its degree:

First-degree heart block:

Symptoms of 1st-degree heart block are uncommon. Most people discover they have it when they are tested for another medical condition.

Second-degree heart block:

Most people with the less severe 2nd-degree heart block, known as Mobitz type 1, have no symptoms. However, some people may experience:

  • Fainting from lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension)

Third-degree heart block:

  • Dizziness and fainting
  • Chest ache
  • Exhaustion
  • Breathing difficulty

Causes of Heart Block

A heart block can be present from birth, called Congenital heart block, or typically develops later in life. This is referred to as acquired heart block, and it can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Heart problems, such as a heart attack
  • Some prescription medications.
  • Lyme disease
  • Heart surgery

Preventive Measures of Heart Block

The best way to avoid problems such as heart block is to change your lifestyle. You take the following precautions to prevent it:

  • Avoid smoking
  • Maintain normal blood pressure
  • Lower your cholesterol
  • Exercise regularly
  • Lose weight if overweight or obese
  • If you have diabetes, keep your glucose level under control
  • Eat a well-balanced diet
  • Limit your intake of salty or fatty foods


The treatment options for heart block might include:

  • Pacemaker
  • Minor heart surgery
  • Medications

To get the best treatment for heart problems you can book an appointment with the top Cardiologists of Pakistan via Marham at discounted rates.