Wide QRS Complex Tachycardia


East Florida


Aventura Hospital and Medical Center

Document Type

Review Article

Publication Date



tachycardia, arrhythmia, WTC


Analytical, Diagnostic and Therapeutic Techniques and Equipment | Cardiology | Critical Care | Emergency Medicine | Medical Education


The heart has a complex electrical conduction system. This system is interwoven in the myocardium, which allows the heart to beat at its own rhythm and creates what’s called a pulse (one of six important vital signs). The heart has what is called a pacemaker, and its function is to determine how fast the heart will beat. It is because of this intricate electrical system that allows all cardiac cells to beat (i.e., depolarize) in unison. A heartbeat (i.e., pulse) can be classified as either regular versus irregular, fast versus slow, etc. When a person’s pulse falls out of what is considered “normal,” then we say this individual has an arrhythmia. Electrocardiograms (a.k.a. EKGs or ECGs) are used to help evaluate aberrancies in a patient’s heart rhythm and pulse. Arrhythmias can be classified by either how fast the heart is beating, i.e., rate (tachycardia, bradycardia), the regularity of the heartbeat (regular, irregularly regular, or irregularly irregular), and finally by the width of the QRS complex (narrow, wide). This article will be discussing a specific group of arrhythmias – Wide QRS complex tachycardia (WTC).

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