UMEM Educational Pearls

Holiday Heart 

- Holiday heart commonly refers to alcohol use and rhythm disturbances, particularly supraventricular tachydysrhythmias.

- The most common rhythm disorder is atrial fibrillation (AF), which usually converts to normal sinus rhythm within 24 hours and antiarrhythmic therapy is typically not indicated.

- Analyses of ECGs in patients who have consumed a large quantity of alcohol show prolongation of the PR, QRS, and QT intervals.

- 2014 AHA/ACC/HRS updated guidelines for nonvalvular AF utilize the CHA2DS2-VASc (congestive heart failure, hypertension, age ≥75 years [doubled], diabetes mellitus, prior stroke or TIA or thromboembolism [doubled], vascular disease, age 65 to 74 years, and sex category) score for assessment of stroke risk. 


Tonelo D, Providência R, Gonçalves L. Holiday heart syndrome revisited after 34 years. Arq Bras Cardiol. Aug 2013;101(2):183-9.

2014 AHA/ACC/HRS Guideline for the Management of Patients with Atrial Fibrillation: Executive Summary. JACC Vol 64, Issue 21, Dec 2014.