How is it diagnosed?

Ifyour GPthinks you have Brugada syndrome after assessing your symptoms, they may ask you to have an electrocardiogram (ECG) and refer you to a heart specialist (cardiologist). This should usually be a cardiologist who specialises in heart rhythm and genetic heart problems.


AnECGis a test that records the rhythm and electrical activity of your heart. Every time your heart beats, it produces tiny electrical signals, which an ECG machine traces on to paper.

Small stickerscalled electrodes are stuck on to your arms, legs and chest and connected by wires to the ECG machine.

If Brugada syndrome is suspected, you'll probably have a simple and safe test known as an ajmaline or flecainide challenge to confirm your diagnosis.

Ajmaline and flecainide are antiarrhythmic medicines that correct abnormal heart rhythms, which block sodium channels.

The medicine isgiven through a vein in your arm, and an ECG records how your heart responds to it.

If given to someone with Brugada syndrome, it can reveal the abnormal ECG pattern characteristic of the syndrome.

Other antiarrhythmic medicines,such as propafenone or procainamide, can also reveal an irregular ECG result and lead toa diagnosis of Brugada syndrome.

If the test is negative, your doctor will consider your individual risk of having the syndrome and advise if further tests are needed, but you'll probably be able to go home the same day.

You may need to have an echocardiography or MRI scan to rule out other heart problems and causes of arrhythmia, and blood tests to measure blood potassium and calcium levels.

Genetic testing

Genetic testing may also be carried out to identify the defective SCN5A gene that may be causing Brugada syndrome.

You and your family may be offered genetic testing if Brugada syndrome is diagnosed in a relative.

Learn more about genetic testing .

Content supplied by the NHS Website

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 21 Dez 2018