Hello & thank u very much for this forum & your time.
I am 53 yr old Female with over a 30 yr history of PVCs. (all tests ekgs echos stress thalium & angiograms have been normal) I have used alcohol to medicate myself over the years for this problem. Lately the pvcs worsened slightly, so my cardio changed my meds from 30 mil. diltiazem twice daily to metroporpolo(sp) & magnesium oxide. Well after FIRST dose my heart went into the worse rythm I had ever had over the last 30 years. I ended up in ER (bigimeny) And my heart has continued to do this worsened rythm periodiaclly ever since...
Could the medication have caused this? I was scared to take another dose so cardio put me on Diltiazem ER 120mg. & told me to go home & not worry. I am now using a hand held event monitor. I called in a recording yesterday, & the docs PA called back telling me it showed bigeminy. I can feel when these beats accur ( very frightening). He said to go ER if I got other symptoms such as light headed, pain etc. I have read on this board MANY time that pvcs no matter how frequent are nothing to be concerned about if one has otherwise sturcturally sound heart. Then yesterday I looked up PVCS in the dictionary here on this site. It said "Frequent pvcs have the potentional to cause more serious rythmns and cardiac arrest. Well that certainly doesnt sound like nothing to worry about to me, in fact it scared the pants off me. So which is it, something not to worry about or something that COULD lead to cardiac arrest?
Also when having these bigeminy which sometimees can last for hours, as many as 8 hrs at a time so far, I have found that drinking beer is the ONLY thing that will make them quit. I have also noticed that when I quit drinking that in about 3 days these bigeminy pvcs get realy bad until I drink again.
It is a vicious circle and i am so very tired of it. Please help explain why the difference between your dictionary definittion of pvcs and what you & my doc have said. Also could the one dose of metropropolo have made my pvcs worse? and What can i do about not being able to quit drinking without having these awlful bouts of pvcs? ( I dont have any other alcohol withdrawal symtoms)
Again, Thank you for your time, and this great site.
I must seriously caution you that using alcohol to medicate yourself is more like rationalization of a overt drinking problem. You should work with your physician or cardiologist to develop a medical regime to try to aleviate your symptoms as much as possible.
Rebound symptoms after drinking can lead to exacerbations of arrythmias. In the setting a strutcurally normal heart , I really wouldnt be concerned for your arrythmias at all, and would work on other agents to try to alleviate your symptoms.
Look back through the previous post and try to see some of the non-medical or alternative ways people have dealt with their symptoms. You might find some tips, others have dealt with them in pretty creative ways.
Again, using alcohol intake as a crutch to alleviate symptoms is heading down a very dangerous road, and I would caution you to seek some help with your symptoms from a physician.
I suffered off and on through the years with episodes bigimeny pvcs, so i know how misrable they are. Be careful what you read on the net concerning pvcs, this usually applys to persons who have heart attacks or other documented heartdisease.
Beers used to help mine also, alcohol tends to irritate the heart muscle and sometime caused more pvcs. maybe your pvcs are associated with a slow heartrate and are what some may call vagally mediated pvcs , if especially if the metoprolol and magnesium oxide same to worsen them.
Anyhow you can rest assured that even though uncomfortable, nothing bad is likely to happen to you and the attack might soon subside.
Even though beers same to help my pvcs, in the long run excessive drinking(more than 2 beers daily ) can have an adverse effect on the heart.
I have given up drinking beer completely and has found that in the long run avoidance of alcohol completely is a plus for anyone who suffers from irregular heartbeats. Also long term use of alcohol in excess can result in alcohol induced cardiomyopathy.
I was walking to work this morning feeling relaxed when i had another of these disconcerting hard heart beats. this one was strong. My heart beat fast directly after it happened but I was able to calm myself down and have had no further symptoms. I still feel scared. I have had weird palps, sometimes daily, now they seem to be weekly, for about 8 months now. I have had a stress test, event monitor and hear 'ultrasound' and have been told that I am fine. But I still get so scared. When it happens my body feels hot for a few moments (probably the blood rushing through with more volume than usual) and i feel convinced that 'this is it' -no matter how sane and unperturbed I feel when I reflect on them between episodes. Sometimes they come in the form of hard heart beats and sometimes odd flutters which can last up to 20 seconds. They freak me out somethin' shockin'. My Dad died when he was 46 of a heart attack. I am 29. I've been told that palps have nothing to do with the heart disease which took him. I wonder if these palps are psychological (I saw him die suddenly and admit that I am scared of it happening to me). Am I vexing myself into a similar fate with fear and my heart is responded by jiggling about when it shouldn't, as though to say, 'don't forget I'm here, and what I can do to you if I don't keep going properly!"
Feeling crazy and scared. thanks to you all for putting up with my rant.
You're not crazy at all, palpitations ARE very scarey, all of us on here know that. I think we all worry about looking and sounding stupid and one of the great bug bears for me is how so often people with our hideous problem are written off as being "over-anxious", oh! if only the people who say this could experience a bout of palpitations, how different they would then see things!
So you're definitely not crazy.
My father had heart disease but I don't ever remember him complaining of palpitations so I would say that your 'condition' and that of your father's are most likely very different. If you do have any problem and probably you don't, it is most likely to do with the 'wiring', the electrics, of your heart, not heart disease.
A lot of people have palpitations and don't feel them! What bliss! My husband, for instance, had an ecg which recorded a lot of pvcs but he couldn't feel one of them, lucky so & so! - and he never has felt them. I, on the other hand, feel every little thing. I've always said I wouldn't mind having palpitations at all if I couldn't feel them. I understand some people have a-fib and don't know! Seems incredible to me.
Best Wishes, Linda
Mike I understand your concerns especially with your father's untimely death of heart disease at such a young age, Must have been very stressful for you and you have a right to be concerned and watch out for yourself, but try not to be too preoccupied with this alone.
It is my understanding that palpitations , flutters and PVCs are rarely a sign of serious heart disease and most persons that die suddenly from a heart attack never had palpitations in their life, that is not to say that palpitations can't be a warning sign, but as a general rule, I understand it rarely is.
I do believe that you should listen to your doctor, after having all those test and your young age. If he said u r ok than believe him.
You can either live your life in fear thus not really living much at all, or decide that you will live each day to the fullest while you are young and healthy. I wasted MANY years worrying about those creepy beats. Looking back...If i could do it over i would have never spent moment worrying about what if this is it. How many times I thought that. I missed out on alot because of it. And still even today at 53 I am here in this forum (some 30 years later) asking for some kind of reassurance, I _DID have many years that I ignored the weird beats and LIVED, I am so thankful for those years, so don't waste yours!
You are probably more likely to be struck by lightening than to die of a heart attack at your age and with your good test results. SO take it from an ole timer, and don't let this thing consume your days.
Thank-you so much for your generous responses. I feel really grateful and warmed by you all.
You are right. I should listen to the educated advice from my doctors. It's been about 7 hours since my episode this morning and I feel sane again. I am always amazed at how frightened I become when they happen. Two weeks ago I ended up in the ER for the second time (palps kept going and became aggravated the more nervous I became. They stopped as soon as the doctors hooked me up to monitors - which says a lot about how the palps respond to nerves! As soon as I was in safe hands the regular beat came back).
I really don't want to live my life afraid of when I might die. What a terrible way to live! when I'm not afraid I feel so grateful to be normal again. This horrible twitch that we all have might have a good side if it makes us appreciate how our lives are.
I have empathy for you all about these crazy things!
there is something wrong.think of it other people we know dont suffer from this but others do..the reason why its like this is because of lack of exersise and not proper nutrition..we arent atenolol or other medication deprived..i think we need to get to the square root of the problem and fix it or atleast leson the symptoms...ause the meds we are taking is not good for the liver .. remeber i claim not to be a doc..this is working for me and just wanted to pass it along
I think the Doc kind of missed the point on the beer-PVC comment.I mean I have certainly found that a single beer will stop my Pvc's for hours. This does not mean I over indulge to accomplish this ...as a matter of fact I drink only occasionlly and not to excess.The beer issue I think is an interesting observation. Maybe some person smarter than I can put essense of beer in pill form without the alcohol and I could live PVC free!!!
Loved your analogy... I will think of that from now on, hopefuly it will help :)
I havn't felt a baby move inside me for many years, but what a wonderful feeling it was. I am not sure I will be able to feel that way about these "kicks" being they r so unpleasant compared to a sweet baby kick, but I will try...
Thanks for your upbeat post, and congrats on being PVC free!! How wonderful that must be!
I understand where you are coming from with drinking beer. I have been through this for over 20 years, pvc's, bigeminy's, you name it, I've had it. I drink at least two beers a night. I always told the doctors that I felt like these skips were coming from my stomach. After bad episodes, I would usually burp.
When I drink beer, it had two effects. It relaxes you so you don't panic, and two, it makes you burp. Therefore, it takes care of two problems at the same time. Believe me, I know what I'm talking about. If it wasn't for beer, I'd be in the nut house long ago. Take care. Barbara
I also had no idea you could get alcohol induced cardiomypathy. No idea. Even though I have had sigle pvc's or pac's since I was 14, and yes even when I was in peak condition as a high school college and pro athlete. They were just few and far between, sometimes once a month. Not since I quit playing, and exactly 3 years ago did I start to get these long episodes. Well that is when I started to drink alot more. I am glad I read the alcohol post and will take a little more caution when I get into spurts of drinking 4-6 beers a night.
hello all..here is something thats helping me as we speak..despite what the docs tell us there is someting wrong with our hearts..we need to first get the palps and pvcs undercontrol and then exersise..this is whats helping me..GREEN TEA..keep an open mind to find a cure..lots of research on this and looka at countries using this they out live us and dont have these troubles..well the first like 3-5 days drink alot of it.like 4 pots a day..get the good green tea and pot with a strainer..not the prebage stuff and drink it its awesome..then we need to walk run..walk like 4 miles a day..we need to get to the root of the probelm
Interesting experience with green tea. I can only imagine what that would do to those prone to diarrhea. My experience has been similar to the green tea/beer scenario. I found that if I drank a large volume of fluid, I chose gatorade and water, my PVC's would always stop. Led me to believe I was diluting out an irritant in my blood stream. It may be that a large volume of anything will do the same, ie green tea or beer, which would normally worsen PVC's.
I have not had any noticeable PVC's since eliminating glutimate from my diet. It comes in many disguises; yeast extract, soy protein isolate, natural flavors and about 8 others. Search 'MSG' on-line and you will find many sites with the complete list.
PVCs/PACs are often attenuated by the autonomic nervous system (the ease with which electrical signals travel through cardiac tissue is controlled in part by the autonomic system surrounding these tissues). This may explain the multitudinous presentations of PACs/PVCs...ie, "when I bend over", "when I eat too much", "when I drink a lot"...each activity causes a change in the autonomic tone, which changes the way abberant (and normal)cardiac signals travel. The presumption here is that cardiac foci constantly fire off signals, but few make it to the pacemaker circuits...and when the autonomic tone is turned up, more of these signals make it through.
We have a tendency to rationalize the production of "skips" as a simple cause and effect process and hope that we can locate the cause...just add the fact that the nervous system surrounding the heart has an effect which pretty much overpowers most others.
Thanks for making me smile:)
(but it is very close to the truth...)
Thank you for your reply.
I totally agree that using alcohol to reduce these pvs is craziness. But when they come and don't go away for hours,and make me miserable and I KNOW that if i drink beer it will make them dissapear it is very hard not to do so. I _am working with my cardiologist, that is why I have the event monitor. I still wonder WHY the beer helps?? And WISH a pill would work as well...although many of the side affects of the meds for pvcs are almost as bad for one as alcohol it seems?
Could you please answer the question about the metopropolol(sp) seeming to cause the worsened pvcs? Is that possible? I had never had bigeminy before taking it and have had it VERY often ever since (for about the last 3mos or so) Even though I quit taking the metopropolol.
Also you did not address the Med help dictionary definition of pvcs. Please do.
Thanks again for your time, it is greatly appreciated!
I drank beer for years to battle rapid heartrate and pvcs, started out with 2-3 a night, only to find out the next day or 2 tachycardia and pvcs would be more severe, eventually after about 10 years it took about 8-10 beers nightly to help, only making the rebounds much worse the next day.
There is nothing wrong with drinking a beer or two daily, in fact in might be healthy if you can keep it at that , but a very very few can, especially if you are taking it to reduce anxiety over medical problem, you usually find you need more and more after awhile.
The morning that I woke up feeling I needed a beer. I said to myself that is it , you are becoming a alcholic. I stopped that very day , it is been almost a year and I still have a pvcs, but few and far between. I am also lucky that alcohol never damaged my heart, a lot of beer drinkers develop what is called a beer drinkers heart, a type alcoholic induced cardiomyopathy, where your heart muscle is weakened from drinking alcohol. It is usually reversible when the drinking has stopped for awhlie, for a small few the damaged is done already.
So for those seeking relief by drinking beer or any kind of alcohol for pvcs, just think the pvcs probably won't hurt me, but the alcohol can kill me. I think fwilson made a great commnent regarding this, read it again, even though as a regular viewer of this forum , I get the impression the fwilson doesn't really really view pvcs as benign at all, but his comment on this thread sure made a lot sense to me.
i also have those pvc/pacs and i guess svts. i was very worried last fall to beginning this year. i had days aking my husband will i be still alive tomorrow? i read every day in this forum to find answers. since end of january 04 i decided to try to ignore them and went to a psychologist for support aswell. it helped me a lot yes i still get them frequently but they dont bother me so much any more. i still get scared when i have the svt runs and if they are longer than a couple secs. i cough and i am back to normal beat. i also get sinus tach out of the blue if i leave them without the beta blocker they are gone after max. 5 hours. they show up mostly after eating pasta or having a reg. coke. i have limit those foods and caffine drinks and those attacks are a lot better. i do ultrasound modeling and once a year i get a 3 hour cardio done by doctors and techs. that reasures me too. special since the ultrasound showed a perfect healthy heart every time i went. i do see a cardio doc aswell and i had all the works done.
i need to get on here more often than i do. I was traveling and out of town tonight. I hadn't eaten anything substantial since 12:30 pm. I ate barbeque rotiserrie chicken, mashed potatoes and corn at a resturant. As I was getting full i could feel my heartrate going up and feeling slightly weak. If i eat alot after not eating for awhile this seems to always happen. sure enuf as I was finished a few PVC hit in a row. I stood up in panic and they continued. They stopped after I went to the bathroom and urinated. Of course anxiety has set in for me tonite especially as I sit here in the hotel room by myself. Doesnt help that just last night I found an article on COUPLETS--two PVC's in a row. is that what bigeminy is?? Well the article said that COUPLETS, bigeminy, or more than 6 PVC's in a minute need treatment. Then why does my cardiologist and electrophysiologist say not to worry about them, and go with the flow?? I too drink 2-4 beers per night as a self medication. but as one person wrote, when I drink 8+ or more at a festivity, the next day is brutal for PVC's. I take atenolol 50mg per day and a half one if I need it at night or have an episode like tonight. I hate these PVC's. I am 30yrs and ex-college pro athlete with a structurally normal heart except for slight MVP, so after all the tests in the book they tell me not to worry. The EP doctor I saw said she would do an EP exam just to rule everything out and ease my mind. This seems like I need to do this as my last step to save my sanity. Anyone recommend an anti-anxiety like XANAX?? Thanks to reading these posts tonight I do feel a ton better. Thanks everyone for sharing their stories.
I think we all know the feeling of being alone when these freaky things happen and the panic that sweeps over us. I feel very sorry for you in your hotel room because it really is scary, but just remember all those other times when they have come and gone. In terms of the run of more than 6 in a minute, I've had them myself. I guess if we've been told our hearts are structurally fine we have to accept the flips as harmless. i have done a lot of personal exploration since these began (I used to have them when younger but they've set in as weekly or daily guests). I now do 20 mins Yoga everymorning and it's the most wonderful thing I coud have started. I breathe easier now and I'm sure flushing the old heart with fresh breath each morning must do some good. I've also read some Yogi philosophy and am intrigued by the idea that we have a network of nerves in our solar plexus (stomach area - western medicine calls it the sypathetic nervous system apparently) which is so sophisticted and resposive it's almost a 'second brain'. I have wondered whether the heart can be affected by jitters which begin in this nerve centre. Well - I've wondered many things and I'm sure I'll have people reading this thinking I'm mad. I am being driven mad, that's for sure. Oh well, I look forward to the time when I can almost 'enjoy' them as the wise guest did earlier - we may as well see them as healthy anomolies if we are lucky enough to be able to.
You have definitely not had the kind of pvc's I experience. You've never had the kind of pvc's that 'take you down' and lightheadedness, dizzying, makes you feel like you are dying or passing out, urgent and frequent urination, etc.. These are the kind that no one can ignor and think positively about and go on their merry way.
I suffered with anxiety for about a year and a half it was after some very tragic events in my life, anyway i had all the usual shortness of breath, chest pain and panic attacks but mostly just everyday i had a symptom of anxiety of some sort. I started to get skipped beats about 8 months ago , about 6 months into my anxiety. I was on the depo provera injection and decided to come off this as i thought it might be contributing to my anxiety. At this stage i was only experiencing "skipped beats" on the rare occasion. When I came off the depo all my anxiety symptoms disappeared by about 80% and when my periods returned after 4 months i was completely anxiety free except for the "skipped beats". They were very few but they seem to have increased over time. I have had all the tests done, ECG, bloods, chest xray and all were normal, in fact ive had them done several times over the last 18 months but im still not convinced. I drink about 1-2 times a week socially and might drink about 3 pints of beer over a 5 hour period which i dont consider to be alot, i will start to get "skipped beats" 2 days after i drink and they will be on and off for the whole day and sometimes into the next day aswell, they really scare me. My doc says to stop drinking but i enjoy going out socially and drinking a few with friends, i have to live aswell. I dont smoke. It really frustrates me that this is happening to me. i exercise about 5 times a week and this helps considerably. I wonder am i ever going to be free of these or will i just have to put up with them. I have started now to decrease my alcohol as i think this is the cause but i have always drank and didnt have them before so i dont know if this is the reason. I have even tried to drink wine instead of beer but this just makes me sick. ive started to take magnesium i dont know if this is helping or not. Im due to see a cardiologist soon to get all tests done just to help ease my mind. I still dont know if they are PAC or PVC as they have never been caught on the ECG/EKG.
I am new to this, just logged on from Australia. I have suffered from PVC's for about 20 years now and always felt alone. I can't believe the amount of people with the same problem! My PVC's were daily and on holter monitor show about 10,000 in a 24 hour period. They left me feeling so debilitated and terribly anxious that I was about to die. My doctor put me on Valium which I took for about 7 years - not high dose but regular, they helped in the fact that I wasn't so anxious but never got rid of the palps. I ended up having dreadful withdrawal sympoms for 12 months when I decided to stop the valium but since stopping it my PVC's have become much less, now only showing about 1,000 in 24hours. Alcohol always makes them much worse as well and so I've stopped drinking anything now and they have settled down even more. I also have Mitral valve prolapse with regurgitation and on having a stress test my blood pressure did not go up with my heart rate it just stayed on 120/80 even though my heart rate reached 170. does anyone know what this means as the doctors say not to worry.
Are you taking any beta blockers? Our situations are really similar. I have/had pvcs for about 25 years, but recent ablations put a stop to them. My PVCs were also daily and in the tens of thousands/24 hours. Tried some anti-anxiety meds, but as you said, the palps were still there. Sorry about the withdrawl you went through. I stopped the meds before that could happen. When I realized that they only made it so I didn't care, I threw in the towel and accepted the pvcs as my little idiosyncrasy. I also have MVP and regurgitation. During one of my stress tests while I was on a beta blocker I had the same experience as you...Everything was OK, but BP stayed very moderate. They said the medicine blunted the BP from going up. They said the medicine what it was supposed to do...Hope you are doing well! Connie
Thank you so much for acknowledging my post, I'm so amazed by this site. I have been trying to post a question but no luck getting through yet, its 14 hours ahead of you here in Australia so I'm usually trying in the middle of your night! I am not on any medication and the doctor had written on my stress report "blood pressure - very poor response to exercise" and I can't seem to find anyone to tell me what this means. should I exercise? and am I at risk in anyway if my blood pressure does not rise as it should? I also suffer with migraine headaches and notice that my PVC's always seem worse just before and during a migraine attack. I also feel constantly tired and sometimes almost as if I have been drugged!! I am 50 years old, weigh about 56kg and have not gone through menopause yet! Also, I may have to have surgery on one of my ovaries soon, do you know if having an anaesthetic with PVC's and mitral valve prolapse is a problem?
You will absolutely love this site! The people are awesome and the doctors are great! The best time to try and post a question is usually around 8:00-9:00 a.m. here in Cleveland (EST). So, that would be about 10:00 - 11:00 p.m. for you. Give that a shot and you make hit it lucky. I must tell you it does take awhile to get a question asked, but it is great when the doctors answer your specific question. Be sure to ask all of your questions in one posting since it is difficult to get in. The doctors do their best to answer each post carefully.
Hmmmm...So, no medicine....That blows my theory of beta blockers stunting the BP during the test. Have you searched the archive on this site? You may find something about exercise and BP. Did you have a chance to ask the doctor what he/she meant by "blood pressure - very poor response to exercise?"
I do not have migraines, but have had "ocular migraines." I get the visual aura, but no headache thank goodness. That hasn't happened since my second ablation though. My daughter went through a terrible time with them. Finally, she tried a beta blocker (for about a year) and it worked! She tried going off of them earlier this year, and so far so good. Keeping our fingers crossed.
Have you noticed that your pvcs are worse now that you are pre-menopausal? There are several women around here that would swear to it, including me! I am 46, but my pvcs went CRAZY in my late 30's and early 40's...I was having over 20,000/day. I think anything over 10,000 is considered VERY frequent. That would be us : )
Oh yes, the tired and draggy feeling...Boy, can I relate to that!! I'm not sure what 56kg is, but I am about 110 pounds. As for the ovary thing...another thing in common....If you would like to talk more, please email me at ItsMeCZ@aol.
I'm also form Aus. I've had PVC's for as long as I can remember - some days less than others - but alway on a daily basis. I've worked mine out to be andrenalin related, which means I can expect alot of PVC's if I get up and walk around, bend, sneeze, climb stairs, hills etc.. I've been able to reduce the number of flutters, PVC's etc by being extremely careful with what I eat and drink.
Anyway, I've also had to undergo anaesthesia, and for me it was unbelievably pleasant. This is because of the calming nature of the anaesthetic. If I could, I'd be buying heaps of it and would definitely be hooked on it.
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