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Ventricular Tachycardia (VT) is a rapid heartbeat that starts in the lower chambers of the heart.


VT is a pulse rate of more than 100 beats a minute, with at least three irregular heartbeats in a row.

The condition can develop as an early or late complication of a heart attack. It may also occur in people with:

  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Heart failure
  • Heart surgery
  • Myocarditis
  • Valvular heart disease
  • VT can occur without heart disease.

Scar tissue may form in the muscle of the ventricles days, months or years after a heart attack. This can lead to ventricular tachycardia.


You may have symptoms if the heart rate during a VT episode is very fast or lasts longer than a few seconds. Symptoms may include:

  • Chest discomfort
  • Fainting
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Sensations the heart beating
  • Shortness of breath

Symptoms may start and stop suddenly. In some cases, there are no symptoms.

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