Advancing the Science

Mayo Clinic Medical Science Blog – an eclectic collection of research- and research education-related stories: feature stories, mini news bites, learning opportunities, profiles and more from Mayo Clinic.


HRV stands for heart rate variability and refers to the time between contractions of the heart muscle.  It is viewed on an electrocardiogram as the spike in the waveform, or "R" wave. Variations would be the differences (if any) in the time between one R wave and the next. It’s sometimes called RR variability or cycle length variability.  Heart rate variability may be a predictor of altitude sickness and is one metric physiologists watch closely at the higher elevations.

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