- heart rate
Who is a candidate for the test?
How is the test performed?
What is involved in preparation for the test?
What do the test results mean?
- children less than 1 year old: 100 to 160 bpm
- children between 1 and 10 years old: 70 to 120 bpm
- people more than 10 years old: 60 to 100 bpm
- trained athletes: 40 to 60 bpm
- a slow pulse, called
- a fast pulse, called
- an irregular pulse, with beats coming at varying intervals
- can be normal in well-trained athletes
- can indicate an electrical problem inside the heart, often called an
arrhythmia. For example, an electrical problem known as third degree heart blockmay cause a slow pulse rate.
- can indicate low thyroid hormone levels, called
- can be caused by several medications, such as atenolol (i.e., Tenormin) or diltiazem (i.e., Cardizem, Cartia XT, Dilacor XR, Dilt-CD, Diltia XT, Taztia XT, Tiazac), which are both often used to treat
high blood pressure
- can be caused by other conditions, such as increased pressure inside the skull, often called
increased intracranial pressure
- occur normally during and after exercise
- can indicate an electrical problem in the heart, often called an
arrhythmia. For example, an electrical problem called atrial tachycardia may cause a fast pulse rate.
- can be caused by many other conditions, including
fever, dehydration, fear, hormone problems, and heart defects. For example, a high thyroid hormone level, or hyperthyroidism, can cause a fast pulse rate. A congenital heart defect known as tetralogy of Fallotmay also cause a fast pulse rate.
Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 1998, Fauci et al.
Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics, 1996, Behrman et al.