A Holter monitor is a small wearable device that tracks and records the electrical rhythms of your heart as you move around doing the normal things you do in daily life, usually over 24 or 48 hours.
It provides information about how the changes in your heart rhythm correspond with your daily activities and sleep patterns and it is used to investigate a range of symptoms such as dizziness or palpitations.
Your Holter monitor must not get wet, which means you won’t be able to have a shower, bathe or go swimming until it is removed after the 24 or 48-hour monitoring period.
To best prepare for your test, please:
Underwire bras can be worn, however many people find they are more comfortable during the device fitting wearing a wire-free bra/sports bra.
The chest area needs to be free of hair to ensure a good quality tracing. Our technician will shave your chest if this is required before fitting the Holter monitor, or you can do this yourself prior to your appointment.
Our technician will start by taking your height and weight.
Next, they will prepare your skin so that the electrodes, which are five sticky dots, can be placed. Good adherence depends on thorough skin preparation and this is essential for achieving a good quality tracing.
The electrodes will then be applied to your chest area and the monitor linked to the electrodes via five leads.
Once the monitor begins recording, the technician will explain what to expect and what you need to do. If there’s anything you are unsure about or do not understand, be sure to ask.
Before leaving us, our technician will let you know when you need to return to have the monitor removed.
Your monitor will continuously record the electrical activity of your heart for 24 or 48 hours, depending on what your doctor has requested and the length of time the monitor has been programmed to record.
You will be asked to record details about your day, such as physical or strenuous activities, medication use, sleep times, and any symptoms you may experience.
If you begin to feel unwell or experience any symptoms, press the blue event button located on the side of the recorder.
This will record the time of the event so the reporting specialist can have a closer look at what your heart rhythm was doing at that time and associate it with any symptoms you experienced.
While you are wearing the Holter monitor you will not be able to:
If you have any questions or concerns during the monitoring period, please contact us.
Allow 10-15 minutes for the removal of your monitor and electrodes.
Your skin may be a little red and/or itchy from the electrodes. For minor irritation, you can apply some paw paw ointment or speak to a pharmacist about an over-the-counter steroidal cream.
If you find the areas painful, the skin has broken or you have any concerns please seek medical advice from your doctor or other health care professional.
A detailed report containing a summary of your hearts electrical activity along with graphs and tracing is generated and sent to your referring health professional within five working days of the monitor being removed.