So I am an 18 year old girl with a range of symptoms that make me think I have mitral valve prolapse. First of all, it is in my family- my mother and grandmother have been diagnosed ( my mom said with MVP tachycardia). One thing to keep in mind as I go through my symptoms is that I can be a hypochondriac and get a bit obsessive over these things, so I've been hesitant to go to a doctor about any of this for years. Also, the anxiety and such could be explained by the fact that I have gone through stressful situations with family in my life (which could also mean all of this could be caused by depression). I'm posting all of this up to confirm that I should go see a doctor, or that my symptoms could be explained by other things that don't mean anything.
So, first of all I have always had problems with anxiety and panic attacks. I went to see a psychiatrist about a year ago, and I was convinced I had ADD, and he diagnosed me after I explained why I thought that. But the medication made me depressed (Ritalin) and I stopped taking it. Since then I feel like all the symptoms I told him about could be explained by anxiety.
One thing that has bothered me for a few years now is that I'll randomly have pain throughout my abdomen and chest that's really painful. I feel like every month or so I'll have this and it usually lasts an hour or so at most. Maybe just gas?
Something that really makes me think I have MVP is every once and a while my heart will feel like it is beating really hard and weird, my mom said palpitation is definitely a sign of it.
I am always tired, could just be depression, but I read a symptom of MVP is chronic fatigue.
I also read about dysautonomia. That talks about chronic fatigue syndrome and irritable bowl syndrome, which would make sense, and also that it is linked to people with MVP.
Basically all of the stuff I have talked about is pretty minor, only the anxiety and fatigue messes up my day to day life. If anyone has any advice or thinks they know what could be going on, that'd be great. Feel free to elaborate, I'm interested in anything a professional has to say as I want to go into a medical career.
First off, I went to nursing school, graduated, got my LVN, but never worked as one. Second, I have been diagnosed with I.S.T. and P.O.T.S., as well as I.B.S..
If you want to find out if you have mitral valve prolapse, I'd go to the doctor tell them of your family history and ask them to listen to your heart- your doctor might hear evidence of it if you have it. If they think you do have it or want to make sure one way or the other, they may order an echocardiogram to confirm or rule out that diagnosis. You may also want to find out, if you suffer from these palpitations often, if a holter monitor would be in order to determine if you are having any irregular heartbeats, like it sometimes feels like- describing to the doctor how it feels.
Secondly, if you are a menstruating female, ask the doctor in light of your tiredness and palpitations & ask to get your ferritin (iron stores) and blood iron checked, as low iron can cause fatigue and rapid heart beat. Low iron is common in menstruating females.
Third, thyroid dysfunction can affect your emotions and more- ask the doctor if they will check to make sure your thyroid function is okay- a basic test & likely the doctor will be willing to order at least a very basic TSH test.
Fourth, the pain throughout your abdomen and chest- it is possible you are having gas build up, which can be very painful & esophageal spasms can cause pains in the chest that can feel like you are having a heart problem. If the chest pains happen especially after eating certain offending foods or laying flat, you might want to see a GI doctor to find out if you have G.E.R.D. (acid refluxes into esophagus).
Fifth, if the pain in your abdomen occurs once a month around your mense, you just might have a painful condition called endometriosis, where endometrial lining goes in places it's not supposed to, implant itself and starts to grow and sluffs at your mense like your uterus does. The gold standard (at least a few years ago) for being definite that you have this is viewing it through surgery (some get laporoscopic exploratory surgery when in severe pain).
You are right, depression can make you feel tired. So can stress. If you get into a medical career, you might want to research what would be the least stressful type of position you could train for. A word of friendly caution... since you feel you can be a hypochondriac and obsess over your health, getting into a medical career may not be the best for your mental health in the long run, because you may look at other's medical conditions and stress more over your own symptoms as to whether or not you might have something seriously wrong with you.
If you are not already receiving counsel and treatment for your depression and anxiety, I hope you can speak to a pastor or Biblical counselor for help in dealing with these difficult struggles in life. Also, if necessary, you might consider going back to the psychiatrist if all medical concerns are cleared up as nothing causing emotional distress, and get some medication, hopefully on a temporary basis until you have a battle plan against these potentially dehabilitating issues. You might consider Naturemade brand of Sam-E for depression & at night, Valerian root capsules if you are having difficulty sleeping sometimes- both types of pills available over the counter. Also, enteric coated fish or flaxseed oil capsules can help as a mood pick me up too (over the counter). I prefer flaxseed oil capsules to the fish ones myself.
Thank you for all the advice, I'll go to the doctor and ask them about all this. It could be a thyroid problem, both sides of my family deal with hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.
Hopefully I can sort all of this out with a doctor soon, there is a lot of different things that could be going on.
I understand that it might be hard in a medical career, but I have a lot of passion for it and I feel like once I get all this sorted out and the anxiety taken care of it will not be as difficult in a medical career.
Thank you for all the advice again, I'll post here in the future after seeing a doctor :)
You're welcome. People are definitely needed in medical careers and hopefully you can find a niche where you will not be too stressed. Helping people is a worthwhile goal! Please do give an update & private message me if I don't respond on this thread (I do wittle down watched threads from time to time). I do hope you can get it all sorted out and get the help you need!
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