palpitation

A palpitation is when your heart beats quickly and irregularly. It's also any kind of shaky, quivery motion.

You know how your heart goes a mile a minute when you're excited? Then you've felt palpitations: that's when your heart beats fast and out of rhythm. Palpitations can be nothing serious or they could be signs of heart trouble. Also, a palpitation is any type of shaky motion, such as quivering or trembling. People with Parkinson's disorder have a lot of palpitations, and we all have palpitations — such as shaky hands — when we're nervous.

Definitions of palpitation
  1. noun
    a rapid and irregular heart beat
    see moresee less
    type of:
    symptom
    (medicine) any sensation or change in bodily function that is experienced by a patient and is associated with a particular disease
  2. noun
    a shaky motion
    synonyms: quiver, quivering, shakiness, shaking, trembling, vibration
    see moresee less
    types:
    tremolo
    (music) a tremulous effect produced by rapid repetition of a single tone or rapid alternation of two tones
    tremor
    shaking or trembling (usually resulting from weakness or stress or disease)
    essential tremor
    tremor of unknown cause (usually of the hands and head) that develops in older people; often mistaken for Parkinsonism but is not life-threatening and can usually be kept under control
    type of:
    motion
    a state of change
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week