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arrythmia
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arrythmia

This is in reply to an earlier thread, and I would like to raise the topic again.

"I often have what feels like flutters also, but after carefully observing realized they ussually are followed by a belch."

You may be 'relieved' to know that I have this exact same problem!  Every few weeks to months I get incidents of arrythmia that are coincedent with the feeling of small gas bubbles rising in my throat.  When I burp these little bubbles out the arrythmia stops immediately.  Sometimes to be followed by the same cycle a minute or so later.  It can happen for just a few minutes or off and on for a day or two.  I've found that taking antacids usually calms it significantly or lacking that sometimes just drinking a cola helps. (the big burps seem to chase the litte ones away)  So I've come to the conclusion that it has something to do with reflux, like tickling a nerve in the throat somewhere that then affects the the heart's rythm.

Generally it doesn't affect me in a serious way, although I have had 3 or 4 cases when the sputtering was so intense that I had to sit or lay down until it (the burps) passed.  I also understand what you mean about the panic effect since it can come on suddenly and is a very disturbing sensation.

By the way I have talked to two GI doctors about this and I'm not sure either believed me.  Both scratched their heads and wanted to refer me to a cardiologist, and I can understand that, but I have declined.  I have no history of heart disease in my family, am in pretty good shape, and am also currently dealing with mild adult onset Crohn's so I already have my fill of exams and probings.  It was in fact a visit to my GP about this arrythmia 10 years ago that led to the discovery that I was anemic and eventually the Crohn's.  The bouts of arrythmia have actually decreased over this period because I am now more discretionary about what I put in my GI tract.  No more hard to digest or spicy foods, etc.  I attribute this to less reflux and hence fewer flutters.

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one in the world with this strange problem.

To the doctors:  Does this condition have a name so that I can impress my regular GI doc who seems to think I've lost my marbles?

Thanks,


flutterz (male, 35)
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I am not aware of a single condition that unifies the symptoms of flutters and reflux.  It is possible that the reflux may lead to palpitations or flutters.  It is also possible that they have no relation.

To further investigate the palpitations, I would suggest an event monitor.  This is a portable device that is worn.  When the palpitations occur, a button is pressed and the heart rhythm at that time is recorded and later read by a cardiologist.  If there are any irregular rhythms, it would most likely be caught using this device.  

Regarding investigating the reflux, an upper GI series can investigate this as well as a 24-hr pH study.  Optimal treatment with a proton pump inhibitor should be considered if GERD is present.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Thanks,
Kevin, M.D.
9 Comments
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Mild adult onset Crohn's eh! Belching ,panic attacks ,doctors scratched their heads! Read this article ,& my other posts , form your own opinion

http://www.mercola.com/2003/sep/13/inflammatory_bowel_disease.htm
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  Medscape article
GERD Linked to Lone Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation
Laurie Barclay, MD
Dec. 12, 2003
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for the replies and I appreciate them all.  But as for the 'possibly no relation' between "burping" and arrythmia/palpitations/flutter I can say with 100% confidence that there is certainly a relationship because I've been experiencing the combination for 20+ years (since I was a teenager).  Since there is apparently no medical name for the condition I can only conclude that it's extremely rare and unstudied.  Perhaps I just have some wires crossed somewhere.

PAJ, that's a very interesting article on fungus and Crohn's.  Interesting because I have always believed I contracted it and am even willing to go out on a limb and speculate on possibly how.  I've always wondered about this.  About a year before it was suspected that I had Crohn's I did something very dumb while under the influence of too many drinks at a bar.  I only marginally remember it and the gaps were filled in later by some friends.  But to keep it short on a bet I wrestled a dirty bar rag out of the mouth of the proprietor's dog with my bare teeth.  It was all great fun at the time.  But over the next few days I developed some very nasty GI problems with intense stomach cramps.  I was prescribed some antibiotics among other things and it cleared up for the most part after a few days.  But my system was never quite 'normal' after that episode and then about a year later, voila.  Crohn's diagnosis.

Maybe it was just pure coincedence.  I always thought it was far fetched given the information on the disease I've read.  But articles like this always make me wonder.
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Finally, I am reading from others what I have been experiencing for many years.  I am a licensed chiropractor in the state of PA and have over 6,000 existing patients.  I hear of many people who suffer with problems that Medical doctors say are uncommon or don't exist.  My father, brother, and first cousin are all medical doctors so I am certainly not medical bashing just stating the facts.  If complaints are not verified with mainstream diagnostic tests they are often discarded as psychosomatic illness. (emotionally based).  

I just turned 34 years old and consider myself to be in good general health.  I work out regularly and eat well.  I took an IG4 allergy test which is a delayed sensitivity allergy reaction test and found that I am allergic to wheat.  If I eat bread, pasta, etc. I have a difficult time digesting, and my heart rhythm changes, creating APC's or PVC's (flutters) until my digestive system settles down.  This worsens greatly with the addition of stress.  So here is my equation for heart flutters. Please respond to this post if you are suffering from a similar problem.

WRONG FOODS + STRESS = POOR DIGESTION, CREATING "FLUTTERS"

I have been convinced for a long time that gas or reflux of undigested food is creating pressure on nerves that effect the hearts rhythm.  I appreciate all of your posts and will be happy to answer any questions if I can.  And...Thanks for the ear.

-Dr. Dean
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Avatar_n_tn
Sounds like a good night out ,at least you beat the dog. Yes fungi implicated in bowel disease, but that
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Hi
I came accross this by accident while seaching for arrythmia topics.
I have had Ventricular pvc's for over a year that i know of I take metoprolol 75mg 3x day, and after lots of tests i was fitted with a AICD , its only gone off 4 times the day after it was fitted due to a faulty lead :-(
Anyway regarding the burping, I get arrythmia several times a day and if I burp it gets better or goes away??
I get arrythmia a lot after food, and if i am sitting? sounds strange i know, I dont recall getting it walking? stress has brought a couple of dizzy spells on (VT)maybe the sitting position sqaushes some nerves??

Any ideas
Andy

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Avatar_n_tn
I stumbled across this thread just now while trying to figure out what's wrong with me. Lately I've been having bad gas, (burping, feeling of bubbles in the stomach etc) and with it I get irregular heart rhythms and palpitations. I'm 20 years old, and healthy, but I work a seasonal job, and during the winter I'm not as active. I'm not sure if this could contribute to the symptoms, as I've worked at the job for 5 years and these symptoms only started within the last 2 - 3 months. Just a little background, I was anemic as a toddler, but got over it and haven't had it since (To my knowledge). Sometimes I get panic attacks along with the heart flutters, as it is a VERY unsettling experience. It feels like I'm having a heart attack and can sometimes last minutes at a time. The other night after a party where I had been drinking, I had an episode where my heart began beating extremely fast for almost an hour. I had friends there to talk me through it, but it was a very scary experience. Another example is when I was playing football recently with a group of friends. About halfway through the game, my heart started beating irregularely, it felt like it was beating twice as fast as usual, or as if bubbles were going through my heart, and I felt dizzy. If anyone has any info for me I would appreciate it. From what I've read, it seems I'm not alone, but I'd like to know more.
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Avatar_n_tn
I've had the same experience of the burping and the fluttering.  Had an echo-stress done and other tests that show occasional PVC's (but these weren't felt like the skipped beats are felt) It get's even worse when I start worrying about it, but yes, you are correct, a couple of good burps can stop it all together.  It also SEEMS that a half a teaspoon of bicarb in water can calm them down as well (I think it sometimes induces the burp or breaks up the gas)

I'm convinced there is a correlation between gas and heart flutters.  Not sure if it's certain postures or what, but It's happened when playing hockey (goalie), or sitting funny, slouching funny, or rowing (where it was really bad). It's almost like the more the GI tract is irritated the more severe the feedback loop.  If there's nothing in my GI system (i.e. after fasting) I don't get the systems. And even if there is, there are times where i've worked out and NOTHING has happened.

I recently read that a study was done comparing the benefits of virtual colonoscopy over standard colonoscopy; one of which was that the colon doesn't get aggravated during the virtual version and thus there were almost no cardiac incidents. turns out that irritation of the colon DOES cause certain cardiac events to show up while they were monitoring during colonoscopy.
More brainstorming folks-we'll get there yet.
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Avatar_n_tn
My son has downs syndrome and is in the 2nd year of this burping problem.  We have been every where with him to get this under control and no luck.  His primary Dr. has put him on Effexor but he still goes thru this burping every day sometimes for hours at a time. He is 32 years old and is so upset over this for he knows his dad and I are about at our wits end.  Read some of the comments on using baking soda or drinking a coke and those are the things we have tried so hard to avoid for him.  The primary wants us to take him to a physiatrist and I do not think that is the way to go.  I do not want him medicated up so much that he cannot function.  He is in no pain with this just so flustrated.  Any one able to help us would be greatly appreciated.       G-MA AND SON
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A related discussion, Flutters after eating, etc. was started.
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