Our bodies are made up of many different organs with different functions that work together in order for us to function at our optimum. One organ in particular that handles a very important job is your heart. The heart is responsible for sending blood around the body. Blood circulation allows your body proper oxygen and nutrients it needs to stay active and healthy.

What is your heart’s electrical system?

In simpler words, your heart is like a pump that is made up of muscle tissue. Like any muscle, your heart needs a source of energy and oxygen to function properly. Ever wonder why your heart pumps and beats? Your heart’s pumping action is regulated by an electrical conduction system. Its heartbeat is the rhythmic contraction of the 4 chambers of your heart.richmElectrical signals of the heart

The signals are generated in the upper right chamber (called the sinus node) and it signals the 2 upper chambers to squeeze and as a result, it moves the blood to the 2 lower chambers. The signal slows down in the middle (called the AV node) and subsequently moves to the bottom chambers.  This allows the lower chambers to squeeze – causing blood to circulate to the lungs, brain, heart and through the entire human body. 

The areas responsible for starting these electrical signals are called nodes and they are typically special cells located in the right atrium. This signal will travel along pathways and in ventricles; these pathways are referred to as his purkinje system and bundle branches. Electrical signals travel through these pathways stimulating the heart’s lower chambers to contract. The traveling of a signal is made possible through a means of complex reaction allowing each cell to activate one next to it – stimulating cells to pass the signal along each cell. The transmission of signal in cell after cell will create a coordinated motion thus creating a heartbeat.

Regulating your heart rate

The cells of the SA node (sinoatrial) located at the top of the heart are called as the heart’s pacemaker mainly because the rate of these cells send out signals will determine the rate of the entire heartbeat. Your heart’s electrical system controls your heartbeat and heart rhythm making sure that your heart is functioning properly. 

Heart’s Electrical System Richmond VA