Holter monitoring is a painless way to record your heartbeat away from your doctor’s office. It is a small, battery-operated electrocardiogram (ECG) machine that you carry with you. The device is about the size of a small, digital camera. Holter monitoring records your heartbeat for your doctor to review at a later time. You can receive your heart monitor in a hospital, test center, or doctor’s office.
When you receive a Holter monitor, your health care provider places small, painless pads (electrodes) on your chest. These connect to the lightweight unit, which attaches to a belt or shoulder strap. You need to keep the device on for at least 24 to 48 hours hours and complete a diary. While wearing the monitor, follow these tips:
Try to sleep on your back.
Don’t take a shower. A sponge bath is OK.
Follow your normal routine. Don’t avoid stress, work, or exercise. It is important to record your heartbeat during your normal activities.
If an electrode falls off or the unit makes noise, call your doctor to see what you should do.
Stay away from electric blankets, magnets, metal detectors, and high-voltage areas such as power lines. They may affect the recording.
Write in the time of day for each entry you make.
Note each change in activity, including when you take medicine.
Note any symptoms you feel.
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