Holter monitoring (sometimes referred to as ambulatory electrocardiography) is a continuous test to record the rate and rhythm of your heart beat as you carry out your daily activities, usually for 24 hours but can be up to 7 days or longer if your doctor thinks necessary. This test allows your doctor to monitor and look for abnormalities in heart rhythm and other intermittent symptoms that may affect normal heart function.
What happens during Holter Monitoring?
You will wear a portable Holter monitor for the required period (e.g. between 1 to 7 days) as you go about your normal daily routine and throughout the night. The Holter monitor is generally about the size of a mobile phone and will be placed in a small pouch around your neck. Wires from the Holter monitor connect to electrodes that are placed on the skin of your chest with a glue-like gel.
If you have any symptoms such as chest pain, abnormal heartbeats or dizziness while wearing the monitor, please record your symptoms.
Preparing for Holter Monitoring
Since the Holter monitor is not waterproof, it is important to avoid bathing, showering, and swimming while you’re wearing the monitor. A medical staff will show you how to reattach electrodes if they become loose or fall off during the testing period. You will also get instructions that explain how to take care of your monitor and what not to do while you are wearing it.
What are the risks associated with Holter Monitoring?
There are generally no risks involved in wearing the Holter monitor itself. Some people may have mild skin irritation due the tape or adhesives that attach the electrodes to the skin. Please inform the medical staff if you are allergic to any tapes or adhesives.
The information provided on this page is for general information only and does not constitute and should not be relied on as medical or health advice.