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What causes palpitations?

The causes of heart palpitations are varied. These may be stress, anxiety or another strong emotional response, strenuous exercise, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine or medications containing pseudoephedrine (some cold and cough medicines) and salbutamol (used for asthma). Medical conditions that may cause palpitations include previous heart problems (heart valve problems, heart defect at birth or heart attack); high levels of thyroid hormone; low blood sugar levels and high output of the heart such as during pregnancy, anemia or fever.

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About this article

Author: Dr Bow Tauro PhD, BSc (Hons)
First answered: 18 Sep 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 5.0 out of 5
Votes: 1160 (Click smiley face below to rate)
Category: Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT)

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