Slow heartbeat Overview

Slow heartbeat, also called bradycardia, occurs when the heart beats abnormally slowly. Adults usually have a lower pulse rate than children. Having a slow pulse can occur normally in some cases, such as those who are young, the elderly, and highly fit athletes. The pulse is also slower during sleep. Heartbeat can also slow sometimes when the vagal nerve is stimulated in relation to coughing, vomiting, or fecal straining. However, a number of medical disorders can also cause an abnormally low pulse rate. Slow heartbeat in a newborn due to various birth complications is called neonatal bradycardia.

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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.