Alternate Names : Pre-Excitation Syndrome
Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome is a disturbance in the electrical pathway of the heart that may cause tachycardia, or a rapid heart rate.
What is going on in the body?
This heart rhythm disturbance is caused by an extra pathway through which electrical impulses travel in the heart. This extra bundle of tissue, also known as the bundle of Kent, is present from the time of birth. The extra pathway may cause electrical impulses in the heart to arrive at the ventricles too soon. This creates an irregular type of heartbeat, or arrhythmia, that may cause symptoms. Heart rates can range from 120 to over 200 beats per minute, compared to a normal heart rate of less than 100 beats per minute.
What are the causes and risks of the disease?
It is not currently known exactly how this condition is inherited, or what causes the extra electrical pathway found in Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome.