Cardiac Dysrhythmia

This page provides an overview of our free Cardiac Dysrhythmia drills and courses.

What is cardiac dysrhythmia?

A cardiac dysrhythmia is an abnormal heart beat: the rhythm may be irregular in its pacing or the heart rate may be low or high. Some dysrhythmias are potentially life threatening while other dysrhythmias (such as sinus arrhythmia) are normal.

Types of Cardiac Dysrhythmia

Cardiac dysrhythmias are classified by origin (atria or ventricles) and by heart rate.

  • Tachycardia is a fast (over 100 beats per minute) heart rhythm. Tachycardias can originate in the atria or ventricles.
    • Arrhythmias that originate in the atria are termed supraventricular arrhythmias (supraventricular means above the ventricles). Supraventricular (atrial) arrhythmias include:
      • Atrial flutter
      • Atrial fibrillation
      • Supraventricular tachycardia
      • Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome
      Ventricular arrhythmias begin in the ventricles. Ventricular tachycardias include:
      • Ventricular tachycardia
      • Ventricular fibrillation
      • Premature ventricular contractions
      • Long QT syndrome

  • Bradycardia is a slow (under 60 beats per minute) heart rhythm.
    • Bradyarrhythmias are slow heart rhythms arising from disease in the cardiac electrical conduction system. Bradyarrhythmias include:
      • Sinus bradycardia
      • Conduction Block
      • Sick Sinus Syndrome

  • A premature beat is an extra beat occurring earlier than normal. Despite being an extra beat, patients may indicate feeling a skipped beat.

Diagnosis of Cardiac Dysrhythmia

Electrocardiograms, stress tests, echocardiograms, holter monitors, event monitors, electrophysiology studies, head-up-tilt-table tests and cardiac catheterization can be used in testing for cardiac arrhythmias. Learn more about cardiac dysrhythmia on this website:

  • Introduction Course
  • EKG Practice Drills
  • Quizzes

Overview of Cardiac Dysrhythmia Training

To learn about cardiac arrhythmias we begin with a study of the essential features of an EKG wave. This includes assessing the P-wave, measuring EKG intervals and segments, heart rhythm evaluation and determining heart rate from an EKG tracing. The quiz within this short course are helps determine learning progress.

Dysrhythmia Basics

Dysrhythmia Practice Drills

Practice rhythm strips are very useful in learning cardiac dysrhythmias.

Dysrhythmia Practice Drills

Cardiac Dysrhythmia Quiz

After taking the basics course and practicing with the dysrhythmia drills, try this 20 question quiz. Immediate feedback as well as a detailed report are available to facilitate learning.

Dysrhythmia Quiz

Parient Monitor Challenge (beta version)

Use our simulated patient monitor as a 'twist' on our quiz format. The moving waveform presents a different type of challenge in EKG assessment.

ECG Monitor Challenge