We propose a novel hybrid Hölder-SVM detection algorithm for arrhythmia classification. The Hölder exponents are computed efficiently using the wavelet transform modulus maxima (WTMM) method. The hybrid system performance is evaluated using the benchmark MIT-BIH arrhythmia database. The implemented model classifies 160 of Normal sinus rhythm, 25 of Ventricular bigeminy, 155 of Atrial fibrillation and 146 of Nodal (A-V junctional) rhythm with 96.94% accuracy. The distinct scaling properties of different types of heart rhythms may be of clinical importance. © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005.