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Holter Monitor Results - I am very worried!
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Holter Monitor Results - I am very worried!

Some background: I am a 35 yr. old female. 3 years ago I was diagnosed as having had a silent heart attack. The only symptom I had was palpitations, which I mentioned to my Internist during a routine exam. An ekg showed abnormal results, and an echo showed a small area of damage. I subsequently had a thallium stress test and a heart catheterization, which showed the damage from a "moderate" heart attack, although I had normal coronary arteries. My EF is 50%. None of my doctors could give me any reason for the MI, and they couldn't tell me when it happened. I do not smoke, do not take drugs, drink very rarely and am otherwise healthy, although I could stand to lose 30 lbs.

I recently wore a 24-hour holter monitor to evaluate my frequent palpitations. My internist told me that the monitor showed that PVCs occurred 1% of the time over the 24 hours - she said this was ok. However, she said that there was 1 occurrance of 3 PVCs in a row during the 24 hrs. She said that this was somewhat concerning, and that she recommended I start taking beta blockers. She didn't seem too concerned, but I read somewhere that 3 or more PVCs in a row was called V-tach, and that this is a very dangerous rhythm, possibly leading to sudden cardiac death. Should I be very concerned about this? Do I really need to take beta blockers?
What are the chances that this could be a life-threatening condition?  I have an appt. with an electrophysiologist next week, and I am very worried about this.

Thank you in advance for any info you can give me.
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Dear Barbara,

These 3 beats are called a "triplet" .  We don't consider something VT untill there are 7 beats in a row.  With a normal heart and an ejection fraciton of 50% your doctor has recommended the exact right thing.  Beta blockers.  In the meantime, avoid caffeine and reduce your risk factors for developing heart disease by exercising and keeping your wight down.  I hope you are not smoking..... if you are, you should stop.
35 Comments
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about the 3 pvcs in a row.. I had the same thing on a holter..  This showed up 3 times on a  30 day monitor.. and when i called in my "tape", the nurse who first looked at it seemed a little freaked out and then she told  me she was calling my doctor and that i had had 3 pvcs all in a row... so I FREAKED OUT....but my cardiologist, chief of a big, high rated cardiology department said it was nothing to worry about.

My guess is that since you've had a heart attack, they just want you on the beta blockers to be on the safe side. but i'll hush now and let a doctor give you the real scoop.
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Now I a too am worried about the possibility of 3 or more pvc's in a row being V-Tach.  I've had even longer runs show up on my monitors and was told it was nothing to worry about. Should I get a second opinion??

Heidi
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I've also experienced several PVCs in a row, but my cardiologist said that this was not dangerous. Was he wrong doctor?
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I sometimes get 5 pvc's in a row.  My doctor said I should not worry about it.  I have also asked about it in this forum and have had the same comments by the doctors here.  "not to worry"
SO I DON'T!!  Get up and walk around or listen to music or call someone.  They are annoying but that is it.  I don't think we will die from these.  
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Like Jodie I have had 5 or more pvcs in a roll.  Its very frightening but I have had them since my early 20's and now I am 37.  I have felt like I was going to died from them but I haven't even passed out.  The doctors all say they are benign and to not worry about them so that what I try to do.  Usually its something stressful or startling that will bring the ones that come right in a roll on.  I have mvp(mitra valve prolapse) so that is what causes my pvcs but alot of people just have them and nothing will show up wrong with their hearts.  Here are some suggestions that might help with pvcs.
Drink lots and lots of water.
Cut out caffeine from your diet and food that contain caffeine, like chocolate.
Cut down or elimated sugar, this includes carbonated drinks.
Excercise(which is something I am lazy about doing) Always check with your doctor before you start a exercise program!
Watch certain foods you eat, some foods that are rich in spices can bring on pvcs.
These are some natural ways to help with pvc's, there is also medication that can help too.  Good Luck!
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I just found this fourm.  I'm a 37 year old male and first noticed  my heart skip a beat when I was 13 or 14 years old.  When I was about 15, I remember taking a Dimetap decongestant when you still needed a prescription for them, and my heart experienced a couple sudden onsets of very rapid heart rate, then it would click back to normal instantly.  Stopped the Dimetap, problem gone.  Since then, have had periods in my life (e.g. weeks, months) when what doctors told me were PVC's would be prevelent. Usually, they could be corralated with periods of mental and/or physical stress (i.e. college, post-grad school, and increased exercise regime.)  I'm in good shape, work-out 4-5 days per week with weight lifting,and mountain biking.  I'm 175 lbs.,and 5-11 tall.  My question for the doctors or anyone who can shed light on it is for the past year or so, my PVC's? occur in runs or salvos lasting upto a couple hours straight.  No let up, just feels like my heart rythem is totally out of whack. They occur usually right when I lay down to sleep at night (not if i lay down during the day though.)  They seem to come on more if I lay on my left side.  If I get up, they'll usually continue.  They usually occur between 12:30 am -4:30 am., then there gone.  Alcohol makes them worse a few hour after I've had a couple of beers.  Flour in food products, or starchy (pizza dough like doughs) bring them on more often than not.  Why are they more prvelant now? Why has my pattern changed?(i.e., used to get them sporadically anytime of day, now almost exclusively at bedtime?)  Is the fact that my heart just freaks-out for hours straight a a dangerous thing?  Or can PVc's, pac's or whatever they are do this and be inoccuous?  Please someone help with an answer.  Finally, other's have spoke of having 3,5, etc., PVC's in a row.  Whats that mean?  I mean mine seem to go for hours, or is my heart beating normally in between the PVC's or whatever and I just don't know it?  Thanks.  This is  a great website.
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Avatar_n_tn
David, what you are experiencing is very common and it is a condition that has hit many of us. The following are a common thread of syptoms (symptoms):

Usually the heart is perfectly normal.

PVCs are very common at night, and can go on for
hours. Laying on the left side seems to make them
much more noticable.

Certain foods, caffine, alcohol, some medications, stress
and in females, hormonal changes can result in PVCs in
some women.

Some people will experience mutiple PVCs, which can be felt
as a long extended flutter. Singular PVCs can be felt as
one "flip flop" with pauses in between. Some can also feel
PVCs with every second or third beat.

It is also very common to go into "remissions" where the
heart will go back to feeling relatively normal for days,
weeks even years before suffering another bout.

Hope this has been helpful.


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Avatar_n_tn
I am having what feels like 30 seconds of PVC's at a time, accompanied by pretty bad dizziness. My last holter monitor revealed them, 6 years back, since then they have gotten much worse. I feel them all day long. They are induced very badly by exercising, and I get what feels like 10 or 15 in a row, not always completely skipped, but diminished beats.
Does anyone know what this is called??
Is this V-tach? Does V-tach have another name?
I called the cardiologist last night and he totally brushed me off and told me to relax... I said, "I am relaxed, I am laying on the floor." I was just watching tv when it came on, and became intensely dizzy. Took my pulse after and was 88. Didn't feel like anything except a bad run of skipped beats.
I want answers! This is very debilitating. Cannot do any exercise anymore.
When I called doc I said, "Hi, I just had a dizzy spell..." and he cut me off and said "How old are you," and I said "25" and he said, "Relax." I said, "I felt my heart do something funny and have an arrhythmia, should I go to the ER and have an EKG?" and he said, "No." and hung up on me. It was awful. I felt patronized.
Please, can anyone offer insight. I do no drugs, am not overweight, don't drink alcohol or caffeine.
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear Sher,

These PVC's of triplets are of little consequence but can be frightening to look at.  Beta blockers are the therapy of choice in this case.
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear Heidi,

In general, if your heart is normal, these runs are of little consequence if they are less than 7 beats.  YOu may want to clarify your findings with your local physician.
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear KB,

This is the correct information. These are likely nothing to worry about.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for sharing your experience.
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Dear Donna,

Thank you for sharing your experiences, good advice indeed.
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Dear David,

I would suggest that since your symptoms have changed you should have a physical examination and evaluation to make sure that your heart is strong.
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Dear Karen,
Thanks for the words of wisdom.
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Dear Sara,

I would recommend a new physician first and then would likely recommend a holter monitor to characterize these 'spells".  It is not normal to feel this dizzy from single PVC's this may represent an arrhythmia from the top partof your heart or atrium.
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The kind doc wrote
>>Dear Sher,

       These PVC's of triplets are of little consequence but can be frightening to look at. Beta blockers are the therapy of choice in this case.<<

I trust you mean beta blockers are the therapy of choice IF they so bother the patient.. but if they are of little consequence you don't HAVE to take the beta blockers, right? My cardiologist said he didn't think I needed any meds..and I already tend to have low blood pressure so I'm quite happy to go without...

One more thing... I DID notice, when i had the documented 3 pvcs, a sort of weak feeling .... not a blacking out or anything.. sort of a momentary weak... sort of "all out " feeling.. very ,very short lived ( a second or two).. is this a common subjective feeling to these kinds of palps?

I am now on  prozac and a little bit of xanax and doing better. I still have the palps.. but i seem to be having fewer and i'm no so anxious about exercising.. so i'm back to walking a bit.

I confess i still drink coffee.. a little bit !!!!

Thanks for your time, great info  -- and PATIENCE with all of us who are ( I HOPE!) the "worried well"...

Best,
Sher
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear sher,

You are absolutely right.  If these additional heart beats are not causing your symptoms you do not need beta blockers.

Best of luck to you.  
please contact us if you have further quesitons or concerns.
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Avatar_n_tn
CCF, thanks! My regular cardiologist was very nice, when I finally got him on Monday. He put me on a 24 hour holter that day, and am waiting for results. Nothing too bad during that test, but test didn't work right, said they couldn't interpret it, need to retest.

I think I got some poor, cranky doctor late Saturday night. He sounded like he'd been asleep. Things have been rough since, but guess that will only make the problems more evident on the test. Last night I had a feeling like a hummingbird (or a buzzing pager) went through my chest, then I got dizzy again, and was dizzy most of all night. Funny:)

I appreciate your reply to me, and all your replies!
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I'm a 38 female and was having up to 1,000 extra heat beats in one hour. all the tests have been done except I am waiting for the results from my nuclear and the m.r.i. will be done in two months. I have two cardiologists one at home and one is a specialist in the area of my problem. I was put on Atenenol that did not work. Then I was put on Amiodarone. I was not happy going on it but I was about to do any thing that would make me feel better. I was taken off the Amiodarone after 3 months because it was effecting my eyes. My doctors were afraid of eye damage and blindness. I know that this drug has many life threatening side effects and i'm concerned about my lungs. While i was on it the cough from my heart got better but a deeper one came along with extreme upper back pain. I have been off it for a month now and I am noticing the pain and cough is getting better. do you think it could of damaged my lungs? Here is a list of my symptoms I hope some one can shed some light. [stomach swells often, light headed, cough, can't lie down flat, chest pain left arm pain,pressure in throat, extreme fatigue]I know for sure i have right bundle branch block and a left ventricular problem thank you in advance.
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This is part two . There wasn't enough room on the first one I wrote.I have been asking both cardiologists if they thought that I could give my mother a kidney. She is in end stage of renal failure and time is running out. Every time I ask if we can start the testing they say your heart is not stable enough and now that the amiodarone [ cordarone ] has brought my heart rate down alot they say there is no way of knowing if they have stopped for good or just because of the medicine. We are the same blood type but alot more testing needs to be done. Both of my doctors are worried about the meds. I would have to take during and after surgery and the stress it may put on my heart. I really don't even know what a right bundle branch block is. Every time I see the cardiologist in my home town We never seem to have time to get to the questions that I have even though I spend more than a hour each time with him. I only have to see him every three or four weeks now. I was wondering if any one knows if it sounds like I may be getting better. The things that seem to bother me the most is extreme fatigue and shortness of breath. the pain is much better and I don't have to prop my self up as much when I sleep. I look forward to hear someones thoughts
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Dear Sandy,

You history is quite complex.  I would recommend the following.  It appears that you have a problem with the electrical wiring of your heart.  Thios is why you have a right bundle branch block which means that the electrical activity of the heart is delayed to the right side.  It is important to rule out underlying structural problems with your heart by having an echocardiogram done, and perhaps some further stress tests or a cathetrization if there are any questions from you initial work up.

Please provide me with more information so that i can be of more assistance.
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I recently had an EKG and my doctor saw something abnormal and sent me in for a treadmill stress test and the results were a little abnormal, but my heart and blood pressure are fine. Now they want me to take a echocardiogram to make sure, what are they looking for they said maybe a valve is not getting enough blood ? On the treadmill test I did not get tired or winded at fast speeds, what do you think it is ? I dont drink or smoke I'm 36 years old and could lose 20LBS   Please reply  Thank you
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What is a run of 7 beats mean?
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My daughter (age 3.5 years) has been getting a rapid heart rate on occasion.  Doctor says may be Superventricular Tachycardia.  Going in for a Holter Monitor (for 48 hrs.) on Monday.  My questions: (1) Is this disease hereditary?  If so, from mom, dad, or either?  (2) If medicine is necessary for regulation, what side effects may occur?  (3) Is daily medicine really that good for a little child? (Well, I guess if it keeps her regular).  Thanks for any ideas/advice.
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Dear Tammy,

I have just read your post.  There is a lot of information in this Forum!  "Lesley" has previously posted a question asking if tachycardia is hereditary (date 12/20/99). It might be useful for you to read the Doc's answer. Good luck!  (ps.. Lesley's post is near the top of the site, if you are scrolling thru!)
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Valerian Valerian Valerian... calms me down at night.. i figured if a DOCTOR... ok .. i KNOW i will catch heat from this... but here goes... Everyone loves to make money.. and if there was something that the Hospitals and doctors COULD do if pvc's were that bad believe you me, they would do it.. but to just say " they are benign" must kill them :) think of it that way.. if they could make m oney by giving you treatments they WOULD.. but they are just letting you walk away.. ,, hell i dunno.. that logic works good for me! i figure if something was really bad.. they would be cashing in on it :)

ok.. all the doctors can yell at me now.. :)
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I am a 51 yr. old female who had a heart attack 26 yrs ago at the age of 25.  I have doctored since then but no serious problems till the present when I also have been told that I am going into A-fib?  I have amonitor on now and will get the results by Thurs whether I need to see an electrophysiologist.  I am quite confused how and why all of this is occuring?  Any help or suggestions would be great
Thank you for listening.
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I had a seizure which caused my heart to beat very fast and I was admitted to the hospital for tests.
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I was hooked up to a monitor because my heart rate went too fast. They had to do it twice.
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I am a 48 year old overweight woman due to steroids and hormon therapy. My father and all his relatives died of heart attacks and or strokes They all had a history of hypertention. My mother, suffered from Miocardial infract at the age of 55, followed by other episodes of chest pain and eventually suffered from CVA's, and frequent TIA's and she had a history of seizures due to a Maningeoma. She was operated and the tumor was removed 80%. My 53 year old brother suffered from three heart attacks, and two strokes. He had his first attack at the age of 42. He has also hypertention and diabetes, just as my mother had. I myself have uncontrolled hypertention, and diabetes secondary to steroid therapy. I have a history of Papiledema, respiratory disease, Asthma, upper respiratory disease, bronchitis and pneumonia. I was hospitalized several times with severe chest pain, and I was treated as if I had a heart attack. I was on nitro drip,I was in Icu, and I was on a monitor. I am taking many medications for the herat and for hypertention, and many more medications for other problems. Now I was discharged from the hospital because of respiratory failure due to pneumonia, bronchitis and asthma. I was heavily medicated because I was unable to breathe and I was under severe stress. The day I was discharged, I took a bad fall because I was unable to stand on my feet, and I had tremours in my limbs and head. I was hospitalized for unstable gate, and two days later the nurse found me unresponsive and having convolsions. I am very worried. There have been many changes in my ekg's. From normal to abnormal. Even the echo showed changes but the doctors seem not to make a big deal out of my condition. I cannot sleep at night because I get short of breath often sufficating and feeling tired and headaches. I believe I might have sleep aphnea. My left arm is very painful, at times I feel that I can no longer tolerate it. Tell me what to do. I am very tired, my heart is palpitating 130 bpm and very often my heart would stop suddenly and then race.  The doctors have made me poor and miserable, and I still dont have an answer.
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Hello everyone... I also just discovered this site and see it's benefits.  History: I'm a 27 yr. old male, 5' 1", 195lbs, fit and exercise 4-6X/week, jog and weight train, boxing, cycle ect... no previous history of any heart related issues... 3 Years agao at 24 yrs. old I was resting on my sofa and experienced 3-4 skipped beats in a row (now I know what a skipped beat is and the sensation) and got really scared thinking I was having a heart attack and was dying (sound extreme, but never experienced any heart related issues) this really scared me! Saw a cardiologist, did a dozen ECG's, stress test, holster monitor, checked twice and told that I was "healthy as a horse". After that first episode, it occured once a day, once a month, once every two months, sometimes twice a month.  A year ago with economic and social stress enduced I started noticing chest pain, more skipped beats and went for another opinion. Did the ECG 10x, stress test, V-Max Stress test for athletes (you run really hard on the treadmill and high grade for 12 minutes), Echo Cardiogram, 24HR holter showed 1 skipped beat in 24HRS... Doc said I was in "Very" good health and guaranteed I would never die of a heart attack or heart related symptom.  Conclusions: I agree with everyone that it's scary, sometimes painful (weather or not your imagining it!) and interfers with your lifestyle. It makes you wonder why you and the rest of the world is so healthy... POINT: Stress and Anxiety is your worst enemy!, Don't drink any alcohol, Don't drink any Coffee, try to eliminate adding any salt to your foods (natural occuring salts should be enough), Stay away from fast foods and dinning out! THE BEST THING IS SLEEP AND REST.  I found exercise always sets a good rythm. Keep your exercise moderate to your condition, age and lifestyle, eat 6 meals/day eating less, have your potassium and magnesium (florida avocado and oranges, banana's). You can also use the Hawthorn Berry Extract (droplet form) from your local health food store and the Horse Tail herb tea once a day! I think it sucks that it's happened to myself and you guys but we can now only live with it! Apologies for choppy story and spelling, just typing my thoughts away... Exercise, Eat Right, Love Yourslef, Rest, Don't Worry (I know I worry alot),Believe in GOD (If your religeous) and try to live the best life you can, hopefully in the next one you'll be a beautiful, rich, and healthy movie star... but for now make the best quality of life you can, unfortunatley we're human and not all answers and reason are know, maybe if we're around in the 2030 they'll be able to grow a new heart in test tube and transplant it as easy as putting on your shoes... Apologize for all the philosophy but you guys know I mean well. Comments or chat: alex_dolgonos***@****  Be well
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Avatar_n_tn
Barbara,
I can relate to you.  I wore a Holter monitor for palpitations and also 4 PVC's in a row and was called with the results "v-tach". I am a 40 yr. old RN, mother of 4.  I knew that this was, or could be serious. I did not have heart damage afetr all the tests I went through but was put on a calcium channel blocker and now a low dose beta blocker.  I'm hoping I won't have this forever.  I am sorry that you had a heart attack because that would make the diagnosis "v-tach"  more serious.  I have also had conflicting info. On what is considered v-tach.  Some say 6 pvc's in a row and some say 3.  Which is it?   Take care and good luck.  Juli
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Avatar_n_tn
I wish to know if a heart monitor would show the condition
of my heart without having a heart cathitor done.

I'm taking monopilif and atenolol for b.p.

Please answer
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A related discussion, same Question was started.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello, I'm not an american, I'm actually a jamaican. Medicine in the developing countries is very different from ur country. We don't readily have the availability of hospital resources and emergency services. I have been plagued now with Pvc's for 1 consecutive week,every minute. I am quite worried and it makes me very uneasy. I was told to avoid B complex vitamins, is this true? Regards Yan
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