Holter Monitor

A Holter Monitor is a small, portable device that continuously monitors your heart's rhythm for 24 hours or more. The results will be reviewed for any sign of irregular activity.

A Holter Monitor is usually recommended if  traditional tests, such as an Electrocardiogram, are insufficient at providing your Consultant with enough information regarding the electrical activity or rhythm of your heart.

The Procedure

A Holter Monitor will take 15 minutes to attach. This will take place in the Cardiology department at the Mater Private Heart & Vascular Centre.

A number of small round pads with electrodes are placed on your chest with the leads attached to a small recorder. These will record your heart rhythm. You can hide the electrodes and wires under your clothes and you can wear the recording device on your belt or attached to a strap. Once the monitoring begins, don't take the Holter Monitor off - you must wear it at all times, even while you sleep.

You will also be asked to keep a diary to record your daily activities while you are wearing the monitor. This helps your Consultant to identify if there are particular activities which trigger changes in your heart rhythm or symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath or skipped heartbeats.

Following the procedure:

  • You will return the next day to have your monitor removed.
  • Your Consultant will compare the notes you have written in your diary along with results from the Holter Monitor recorder.
  • If you did not have an irregular heart rhythm or unusual activity while wearing the monitor or the results are inconclusive, it may be recommended that you try a wireless Holter Monitor for a longer period of time.