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ANXIETY/EXERTION RELATED POUNDING HEART?
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ANXIETY/EXERTION RELATED POUNDING HEART?

Hi,
I have been experiencing palpitations and some arrythmia twice this past week.
I am a 40 year old male. I consider myself fit. I have exercized off and on for many years. For the past several months I have followed an intense work out regimen: weights about 4/5 times a week (each muscle group trained only once a week) and 30 minute aerobic sessions 3/4 times weekly.I was feeling great until last week when my ex-wife and I engaged in a major phone argument. (She alienated me from my sons for 2 years until 1 month ago. I live in France and they live in the US. After this argument, I started feeling extremely angry, agitated and frustrated. My doctor told me I was fine with my blood pressure being 140/80 even though lately it was more around 120/80 or less. The next day I started running to catch my train and my heart rate started to increase uncontrollably and didn't seem to want to go back to normal. I felt palpitations the rest of the day until I fell asleep. Things got back to normal the next day but I held off on the work-outs. As I was feeling better yesterday I went back to the gym and had a particularly intense weight work-out. But I found it harder to get my heart rate to slow down in between sets. Today, I still feel like I just came back from running and my heart rate is still abnormal: 80 beats/minute when normally it is 60 beats/minute.
Is this related to stress and/ or exertion?
What do you recommend?
Thanks so much for your time.
Fabrice
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Fabrice,

I am very sorry to hear about your family.

Stressful situations like this can have profound effects on our health.  There are times that we don't feel stressed but our body can show signs of this with things like increased heart rate, change in bowel habits, decreased sleep, etc.  Given the timing of the argument and the increased heart rates, they sound like they be related.  At this point I wouldn't recommend any medications.  I bet in a little time things will return to normal.

Thanks for posting.
14 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I forgot to add that I have had the impression of skipped heartbeats before. Nothing regular, but it has happened. About 2 days ago, I experienced some.
I was seen for a similar problem in 1996 (I was 30) when I was going thru a very stressful period. I saw a cardiologist who ran all kinds of tests on me and they all came back negative and all he prescribed was aerobic activity. I saw another doctor about 4 years agpo for similar symptoms while I was freaking out over major changes in my life. I have been in pshychotherapy for the last 2 years and I would consider myself a much calmer guy, but my heated talk with my ex and her attitude was the straw that broke the camel's back.
So I'm thinkig stress has a lot to do with it.

1 COULD THIS TACHYCHARDIA, RAISED BLOOD PRESSURE AND SLIGHT ARRYTHMIA CAUSE A HEART ATTACK OR OTHER TROUBLE?

2 What should I do as far as working out (exercize has been important in helping me remain, sane given my circumstances of a painful divorce and being separated from my children for 2 years...)?

(I have been thinking about this a lot and I know it adds to my stress...)

THANKS SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIME
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Avatar_n_tn
And is this just likely to clear on its own?

Thank you very much
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97628_tn?1204465633
  I hope you are able to resolve your situation with your child. That must be difficult.

I don't think 80 bpm would qualify as tachycardia.
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Avatar_f_tn
how do you know you are in an arrhythmia?? Have you had this diagnosed by a monitor?? And yes 80bpm is normal..
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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you so much for the prompt responses.
No, I don't believe any arrythmia was ever "officially" diagnosed by a physician but I have at times felt my heart skipping a beat or racing then slowing down within only a short period of time. So it sounds like arrythmia (mild?) enough to me..
Could ADRENALINE be the culprit here?
I tend to get worked up every now and then and the only times I have felt these symptoms coincided with moments of great stress, like now...
And even if 80 beats/minute seems OK, I normally have a much slower heart rate (60 b/mntes).
What would you recommend?

Thanks again for your help.
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Avatar_f_tn
ide go to your doctor, get a monitor, and capture what you're dealing with.. its impossible to tell if you're in an arrhythmia without capturing it on a monitor
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Avatar_n_tn
I have always felt my heart beat and paid no attention thinking it was normal. Recently my bp shot to 165/101 and pulse up to 92 resting ( normally 60 - 68 for me ). With chest pains and several other issues which I won't go into detail since this is your post, I was trying everything to figure out what was going on. I was a heavy coffee drinker and since I heard that could raise bp and pulse I stopped all caffeine. The most noticable change was I no longer can feel my heart pounding in my chest ......... as a mater of fact it's hard to locate without a scope. BP and pulse came down over a few days.

This isn't to say that caffeine would be the specific problem. It may only be making an underlying condition more intense. But it is a good idea to reduce or better, remove caffeine at least until the problem is figured out. Pulse fluctuates even in a resting state through the day and in the 80's is not usually a concern.

You mention you have a regular workout so it may be you already eliminate things such as coffee. Most of the energy drinks that are a rage today are high doses of caffeine to give you that boost.
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Avatar_n_tn
Stress  & adrenaline can definitely factor into palpitations but it's a good idea to have a holter and see what you are dealing with.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

I wanted to thank all of you for all the precious comments and advice you have kindly posted.
I have started feeling better. I had a good work-out yesterday and my heart beart seems to be almost completely back to normal.
I am convinced that there is indeed a close connection between my palpitations and raised bp and the intensely upsetting argument I had a few days ago. I hope I have learned a lesson here; I will try not to indulge in such pointless, self-inflicted agony next time. Live and learn...
Thank you again to all, or as we say in French: "Merci beaucoup!"
Fabrice
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Avatar_n_tn
Stress is a mofo!

Also keep an eye on your electrolytes when you work out so much. Low potassium can make your symptoms worse.

Good luck!
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61536_tn?1340701763
I'm sorry about your family situation, it's no wonder you're experiencing stress symptoms.  A lot of what you're feeling are things I've felt myself during times of stress.  Do your best to find ways to relax and minimize stress.
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Avatar_n_tn
I just had an ekg and it was abnormal with unspecific t waves.........I have to wait for an answer and I am worried............I have hypertension but controlled
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a 34 yr old woman I have recently been experiencing palps I have had them for 3 days then they went away and have now returned 2 days later I am going to the doctor 2 day because I am scared 2 death my palps are constant 3-4 in a row all day long . They tend to get worse at night .I can finally calm down at night and go to sleep .When I wake up thay are gone I can lay in bed all day and not have one but once my feet hit the floor they are back They totally exhaust me. I sit the whole day palp after palp waiting on the next one I am so tired of them I could scream .They seem to be here for no apparent reason .I know I have some stress but when i am not even stressing I have the palps.I had a slight case od palps a few years ago ad the doc put me on toprolxl and an anxiety med hopefully this wont be any different.
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