What is a Holter Monitor and what does it do?
A Holter monitor is a battery-operated portable device that records your heart’s activity (ECG) continuously for 24 to 48 hours depending on the physician’s orders. The monitor is small and lightweight. This monitor comes with few wires and electrodes that are attached in certain areas of the chest.
Who performs the test?
The test is performed by a licensed Respiratory Therapist.
Where does it take place?
At Jackson Hospital in the Cardiology Department.
How long does it take?
24 Hour Holter Monitor-Cardiac monitor is worn for 24 hours and turned back in to the Cardiology department at Jackson Hospital.
48 Hour Holter Monitor-Cardiac Monitor is worn for 48 hours and turned back in to the Cardiology department at Jackson Hospital.
What you can do to make it a success?
Please be sure to bring your doctor’s orders with you the day of your test. Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment time to register.
What to do before your exam?
There are no special dietary restrictions for this study. Please do not wear lotions or oils on the skin in the chest area.
What happens during the exam?
- A specially trained technician will attach the Holter monitor and instruct you how to record your symptoms while wearing it.
- The technician first attaches the electrodes to your chest. If you have a hairy chest, he or she may shave some hair off to attach the electrodes firmly.
- Once the electrodes are in place, the technician helps you put the Holter monitor on and explains how to take care of it.
- You can carry the monitor in a pocket or pouch, slung across your shoulders and neck like a purse or camera, or attach it to your waist.
- Do your usual activities while you wear the monitor with these exceptions:
- Don’t bathe, shower or swim while wearing the monitor.
- Stay away from high-voltage areas, metal detectors or large magnets.
- The technician will show you how to keep a diary of your activities and symptoms during the test. It’s important to keep an accurate diary. If you feel symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats or dizziness, note in your diary the time of day they began and what you were doing. Your diary will be compared to the changes in your ECG recorded by the Holter monitor.
What should I do after the exam?
After the 24-hour or 48-hour time period, depending on the physician’s order. You can remove the sticky electrodes from the chest and place the monitor, wires and diary in a bag and return them to the Cardiology department. If you do not feel comfortable removing the monitor, please come to the hospital and the technician will remove the monitor for you. You may resume normal routine with no restrictions.