Flutter is a rapid vibration or pulsation. The difference between flutter and fibrillation is that flutter is well organized while fibrillation is not. For example, atrial flutter consists of well-organized but over-rapid contractions of the atrium of the heart (usually at a rate of 250-350 contractions per minute). Atrial flutter is a serious and potentially unstable cardiac rhythm.
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Agitation; tremulousness. [A.S. floterian, to float about]
- atrial f., auricular f. rapid regular atrial contractions occurring usually at rates between 250 and 330 per minute (Type I atrial f.) and often producing “saw-tooth” waves in the electrocardiogram, particularly leads II, III, and aVF. Type II atrial f. is at rates of 330–450 per minute. Unlike Type I, it cannot be terminated by overdrive pacing.
- diaphragmatic f. rapid rhythmical contractions (average, 150 per minute) of the diaphragm, simulating atrial f. clinically and sometimes electrocardiographically.
- impure f. mixture of atrial f. (FF) waves and fibrillation (ff) waves in the electrocardiogram. SYN: fibrilloflutter, flitter, f.-fibrillation.
- ocular f. a spontaneous, brief, intermittent, horizontal oscillation of the eyes occurring during fixation; it often coexists with ocular dysmetria in cerebellar syndromes.
- ventricular f. a form of rapid ventricular tachycardia in which the electrocardiographic complexes assume a regular undulating pattern without distinct QRS and T waves.

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flut·ter 'flət-ər n an abnormal rapid spasmodic and usu. rhythmic motion or contraction of a body part <diaphragmatic \flutter> <affected with ventricular \flutter>
flutter vi

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a disturbance of normal heart rhythm that - like fibrillation - may affect the atria or ventricles. However, the arrhythmia is less rapid and less chaotic. The causes and treatment are similar to those of fibrillation. See also cardiac arrest, defibrillation.

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flut·ter (flutґər) a rapid vibration or pulsation.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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