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Left Bundle Branch Block


GingerA
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A bundle branch block is a problem with the electrical conductivity of the heart. IE the electrical signals that tell your heart to beat are not being processed correctly and, in this case, the left ventricle is slow in contracting. It has a very characteristic EKG.

Usually this is caused by a heart attack due to high blood pressure, but since I don't know your dad's medical history, it's possible it's related to dysautonomia (I say this because almost anything can be related to this disease). I would say however, that this is a really common occurrence in heart attack patients, so it probably isn't due to dysautonomia, just due to the heart attack itself - but I would talk to his cardiologist to be sure.

Hope he's feeling better!

Sara

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Sara is correct. The bundle-branches are special electrical conducting pathways in the ventricles. They take the electrical charge from the AV node and very quickly it travels down to the bottom of the ventricles via the bundle branches, the charge then spreads out through the heart muscle causing the venticles to contract from the bottom upwards.

When one of the bundle branches is damaged by a heart attack, it causes a change in the ECG (EKG). The QRS complex is the tall spiky bit on the ECG and it is normally very narrow. A bundle branch block makes the QRS complex wider as the electrical charge moves more slowly without the help of the fast conducting bundle branch fibres.

In some cases the bundle branch block can resolve in the early days after a heart attack but more usually it stays on the ECG as a marker of the old damage. In some people a bundle branch block is the only change on an ECG at the time of a heart attack. It will be helpful to doctors in the future if your Dad keeps a copy of his current ECG in his wallet. Then if he has chest pain in the future the ER docs can compare the ECGs they take with the copy of the ECG that is now "normal" for him.

I hope your Dad makes a speedy recovery from his heart attack,

Flop

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