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PVC's and Medication contiued
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PVC's and Medication contiued

I have suffered from multiple PVC's for many years, By "multiple" i mean that it is alike to skimming a stone on a lake, first the big thump-stone on water, then subsequent lesser thumps. The trouble was that I would get these symptoms one after another and another particularly when my body was tired or I had overdone things. It would only need me to sneeze,laugh,raise and arm or stand up to feel a succession of these symptoms and I would experience several hundred in an hour. At worst they could initiate AF. I only suffered AF symptoms 2-4 times a year but my hospital put me on 200mg of Amioderone. Since being on Amioderone for 2 years now the PVC's are a lot better but the side effects from Amioderone include neck,eye and headaches, pains and aches, stomach upsets, skin rashes and more worryingly the loss of 13kg over 2 years.
    My questions are, do you think Amioderone is the best medication for my condition considering the small frequency of AF incidents and are there more human friendly drugs that I could take instead.
NB. Prior to the Amioderone I was on 80mg of Sotalol x2 daily but my body soon became tolerant of these and the PVC's returned. A larger dose was not tried.
Tags: pvc's, Heart
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Avatar_n_tn
PIMacca,

Thanks for the post.

Q1:"do you think Amioderone is the best medication for my condition considering the small frequency of AF incidents and are there more human friendly drugs that I could take instead"?

No.  I don't think that amiodarone is the best medicine (based on the little information provided).

If you are a young person, and by that I mean less than 70, I do not generally recommend amiodarone for the treatment of PVCs.  The side effect profile from this medicine is too severe for most younger persons.  Other medications are available, but I would need for information before making a recommendation.

Non-medicine therapies should also be considered.  "Alternative" therapies are often effective for learning to cope with the PVCs.  Catheter ablation is also available, and would be preferable to amiodarone.

Good luck.

20 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I wanted to pass on to you (and everyone else) who has PVC's something that worked a miracle for me.  I don't take medicine/drugs, so I refused the perscription giving to me by the cardiologist....I was just going to live with them.  I had PVC's (all day...every day!) for about 2 years before I figured this out!  I went on a Low-Carb diet and in 3 days, my PVC's had totally stopped....not a one!!   I thought I must be having a good day but they didn't come back (for 2 months).....not until I decided to eat some pizza one night.  About a day and a half later, the PVC's started back and I had them for about a day to a day and a half.  I thought that was unusal to just come back out of the blue and then stop again.  I kept with my low-carb diet and they went away but I hadn't realized yet that it was the carbs giving me the PVC's.  About a week later I ended up eating a plate of spagetti and the next night, the PVC's started again.  I took a mental note this time and then realized that the same thing happened when I ate the pizza, the prior week.  So, I stayed on my low-carb diet for several more months (strictly to the low-carb plan) and never had any more PVC's.  I then decided to test my theory and guess what?  I found that when I eat carbs, the PVC's will return within 2 days.  Depending on how many carbs I ate would also determine how bad they were.  I know that there is NO medical proof of what I am saying but I know for a fact that it has worked for me.  It wasn't losing weight that stops them because they stopped in 3 days, after starting the diet, which is how long it takes to rid your body of carbs. And they will come back if I decide to eat carbs.  It's doesn't seem to be all carbs but the starchy kind (bread, pasta and potatoes).  Fruit doesn't do it or veggies.  I have also tried some of the carb blockers when I decide that I want to eat, say a Subway Sandwich, and it does help.  Sometimes I will feel a few PVC's but most times not.  

I hope you will give the low-carb diet a try and see if it helps you.  When I go back to my cardiologist, I will tell him about my own findings and see if he knows how a way to start a "study" on this theory.  Good luck with your condition.  

Sherry

P.S.  Please note that I am in no way a medical professional....this is just my own experience!  If you do decide to start a low-carb plan, please check with your doctor.  I find that most doctors do not like the low-carb diet but we have to do what we believe is best for us!!  Have a great day!  :-)
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Avatar_n_tn
If there a link between your PVCs and carbs, it might well be that you have eliminated high glycemic foods from your diet -- those cause blood sugar spikes and might, I would guess, play a role in PVCs..

good for you! So glad you are feeling better.

Lynn
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Avatar_n_tn
hi,
i often get a rapid heartbeat and i too associated it to eating pizza, macaroni, etc., the less i eat of them, the less my heart seems to go bananas.  it still beats fast sometimes, but especially after eating those kinds of foods.  but ive lost a lot of weight from doing this.  at first it was an added bonus, but now im losing too much i think (25 pounds in 4 months).
Pan.  have u lost weight too?
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Avatar_n_tn
I too have noticed a reduction in PVCs with the lo carb (although I didn't give the diet credit) - but when I started Toprol for SVT - the PVC's came back but at a much reduced rate as compared to pre lo carb and pre Toprol.
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Avatar_n_tn
Could you give a few details of your diet.. I to have long suffered from many PVC'sand am in shape but eat many carbs. I'll try anything conservative and your diet idea sounds like it is sure worth a try. Thanx Ray
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Avatar_n_tn
hi,

thats interresting with the carbs. i have noticed when i have spaghetti with tomato sauce that in 90% the next day may heart is racing, well on the low end but still, for about 5 hours. last time it happend i went to the er and it was only sinus tach.
today i took a beta blocker for it the first time 25mg of atenolol. i felt great having no tumbling in my chest for about 6 hours. i guess the med is wearing off. but now i feel exhausted and weak and tired is that normal? what are carb blockers?

michi
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Avatar_n_tn
I am doing a low-carb diet too, but am not sure if my reduction in palps is due to the diet, or the fact that I recently started meds.  Maybe both.

I talked to my doctor about dieting and he was not really pleased with a total Atkins diet.  He thinks some carbs- especially in the form of fruit- are too good to give up.

My husband and I have a very simple diet.  We each eat a Carb Solution bar for breakfast.  It isn't the tastiest, but really fills you up.  On weekends we eat eggs or egg beaters instead.  We then eat a grilled chicken breast and either a salad or veggies for lunch.  We grill a ton of chicken on Sunday so we have it handy all week.  For dinner we eat what we normally would, just smaller portions and less carbs.  We don't eat any bread or rice or potatoes.

Snacks include fruit, veggies, nuts, yogurt.  So far I have lost about 15-20 lbs.-- and this is just since Thanksgiving.  I think the carbs were really doing me in.  I am also exercising, so that of course also adds to the weight loss.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for all your inputs but i think the diet thing allthough an interesting theory may not work in my case. I do not know how PVC's were initiated in each of your cases but mine came from having Dilated cardiomyopathy which to some extent probably upset things. The DCM is essentially better but i was left with this legacy of multiple PVC,s. Thanks all anyway. PS can't afford to lose any more weight as i am wasting away!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi.  I am glad to see others are finding the same positive affects from the Low Carb diet, concerning PVC's.  I go along with the Atkins Diet mostly but I know there are several other "low carb" diets out there too, like Protein Power and the new (well not so new) South Beach Diet.  I have not read a lot about the SB Diet but understand it to be a little different that the other two that I mentioned but still somewhat low carb.  You can pick up the The New Diet Revolution by Dr. Atkins and it will explain in detail, how the whole thing works.  The weight loss is definately a bonus with this type of "self treatment" but to those that are losing too much weight....let me say first that I hope you have had a recent check up with your doctor!  You wouldn't want to aggrivate any underlying conditions.  Depending on how much you weighed to begin with would probably determine how much is too much to lose on this diet, in a 4 month period.  On a low carb diet it is very easy to lose a great deal of weight for several months but the closer you get to your "ideal weight", the more the weight loss will slow down....at least that is what I have found to be true with myself and the people that I know personally that have tried this diet.  I believe that if you follow this diet according to book, you shouldn't have any kind of problems.  I think people forget to take the needed vitamins and minerals and cause their own problems....they are trying to do a NO CARB and don't add in the things that they need.  If this diet is done correctly, you will get a balanced diet....except for the induction! That is the strictest part of the Atkins diet but you MUST remember to take the supplements! If you don't take them, you can feel weak or tired, get legs cramps and your heart can feel weak.  There are lots of low carb breads, pastas and desserts out there that are making this diet even easier....although they are somewhat costly.  If you are craving chocolate, Atkins has WONDERFUL snacks that taste almost like the real thing...I love them.  You can find them in health food or vitamin stores and even in Walmart.  Atkins also has a line of bread/pasta products.  I have tried the banana nut muffins and they are pretty good....not like the real thing but definately satisfy a craving for a muffin.  Also, Natures Own has a low carb bread that is great for sandwiches, french toast or to dip in your egg yolks!  It has been a life saver for me!!  It isn't hard to do this diet....it just takes some getting used to and as far as I'm concerned has "cured" me of my PVC's.  It's my diet of choice, for the rest of my life, for that reason alone!  

The Carb Blockers block some of the starches in food and keeps them from even going into your system...your body doesn't use them at all so you don't have whatever effects they cause....in my case, the PVC's.  They will NOT block the carbs in sugars though but I have seen Sugar Blockers on the shelves, too.  I have not tried any of these and personally think it is best to just avoid the carbs (but especially sugar) whenever possible.  I just use them to indulged myself whenever I feel like it....but that isn't often.  There are lots and lots of info online that help with any questions you may have the Atkins Diet (or any other low carb diet), carb or sugar blockers, etc.  If you would still like to email me personally about anything, I will gladly respond but please remember that I am not a medical professional and really can't answer any health questions, although I could help find some helpful info, if you like.  I hope everyone finds the help that that need with their PVC's and if this diet doesn't seem to be for you, then I hope you can find something that works.  There are other things to try....like natural herbs!  There are some interesting ideas about using herbs for ANY of our health problems, that I have personally been exploring myself.  I've even visited a Chinese doctor that helped me with some other issues....but that's another story!  

Okay, so if anyone does want to email me about anything that I have said, you can at ***@****  The things that I have discussed are my own personal findings and beliefs (my opinions!).  Good Luck to everyone!!

Sherry
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok you guys I have a comment too!! I tryed the atkins diet for a few weeks and your right! pvc not there at all. I do other things as well like zoloft and natural stuff to. wow! This is a trip!! low carbs can make them stop! What a concept. Ok so I am going to do this again. I can afford to loose a little. I have had some pvc in attacks that go away after a few weeks or so. But thousands a day when there active. I  have to say when i went off the diet i got quite a few pvc again, your right!
They only lasted for a day or two, didnt put much mind to them at all. I learned that when they do come if i calm down they seem to go away better. If i freak they do to. Thanks all you are such great help! Take care.
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Avatar_n_tn
Sherry,
I was very interested to read your post several weeks back about the Low Carb diet and its radical effect on your PVC's.  I am just curious to know if you are continuing to live "PVC-free"?  I considering the diet for a number of reasons but your story caught my interest.

I currently do not take any medications (nor want to) for my intermittent PVC episodes. While I not sure of the "root" of the PVC's, stress and probably diet are big factors.  In your case, it sounds like diet was more than a factor but the cause.  

I thought I would get started and see what happens but I wanted to check in with you to see how things are going.

By the way, how long had you had PVC's?  When did you get them?

Hope to hear from you soon.

Rob
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Rob.  I'm glad to see my post has sparked some interest and hopefully some help for others!  I had PVC's for about 1 1/2 years before I started the Low-carb diet.  As long as I stick to the diet, I am totally PVC FREE.  I would have them if I ate a large amount of carbs, in one sitting (as from a serving of white rice, pasta, pizza, etc).   I didn't seem to have any problems from eating carbs from fruits or veggies though, which is interesting to me.  Now to prevent the PVC's, when I want to have some carbs, I will take a "starch blocker".  They work great for me but to tend to make my stomach feel bloated.  It is worth it to me though!  If you are considering the diet to lose weight, then you really should wait a while before taking "carb blockers"....when you are closer to your goal weight.  Although they do great to prevent the PVC's (in me) they seem to take you out of ketosis and stop the weight loss.  You really should only use the "carb blockers" for a serious carb craving!!  The diet is pretty strict but once you have been on it a couple of weeks, you really won't be craving any carbs anyway.  Sometimes I just feel burned out on the diet and want something different.  But I will be doing this type of diet for life, since it is what keeps my body feeling normal and actually very healthy!  

I hope the low-carb life style will suit you and help with your PVC's.  It is tough at first but after a couple of weeks you will notice how much better your whole body and mind feel...and of course, hopefully this will cure you of those irritating PVC's!  Please remember to take a multi-vitamin and extra potassium and magnesium.  Excercising and stretching are great stress relievers, too, so I hope you will add that to your daily routine.  

Let us all know how things are going for you and if this diet has helped you too!  Good luck with everything. :-)  


  

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Avatar_n_tn
To spachic1:

I am so glad to hear that the low-carb diet is doing wonders for you too.  Keep it up!!  We all need to learn to listen to our bodies and do whatever is necessary to keep it happy through diet, excercise, or whatever else works for you/us.  :-)  

Keep us posted on how you are doing with the diet.  Maybe someone (a medical professional) will consider doing a study on the effects of carbohydrates and arrythmias.  Actually, we really need more studies on how carbohydrates effect the whole body.  I've have come across a lot of info on carbs being thought to play a major part in the development of Diabetes, as well as many many other medical conditions.  I think the USDA should turn that "Food Pyramid" upside down and see how much healthier we all start getting!  

Good luck with "curing" your PVC's!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Sherry,
Thanks for the post.  Good to hear that the low carb diet is still keeping the PVC's at bay.  I actually started changing my diet several days ago.  Whether it's the diet, the power of the mind, or a combination of the two, I have had 2 good days, almost completely PVC-free.  Although I would certainly have days or even weeks before the diet change where I would not have them, I do seem to feel different this time around.  

I exercise quite a bit - basketball, running, etc.  I plan a long run tomorrow to test the low carb theory as I usually had the PVC's before and after the workout - it seemed to be a certain heart rate level where it would kick in.  If it wasn't such a frustrating thing to have, it is fascinating to me when they come and when they don't.  Other times, I believe stress (mental) has brought them on...like many other people you read about in this forum.

On the subject of diet, it is interesting to me that the first time I can remember having the PVC's was after eating Mexican food - this was 4 or 5 years ago. They didn't last long and as Mexican food wasn't an everyday food, they were very sporadic at the beginning - not even something you would think much about.  Aren't there lots of carbs in many Mexican dishes...hmm...hmm...a connection??

I am still not sure the connection with exercise but maybe the major root of it could still be the carbs.  We will see. Your point about someone in the medical professon doing a study on this is well taken.  I think it would be a fascinating study for someone, especially after reading about so many people with this pesky annoyance.  It just doesn't seem like something that people should have to live with...

Anyway, hope we can keep talking....I will keep you posted.

Rob
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Rob,

I noticed also (before the Low-carb diet) that when I would do things that raised my heart rate the PVC's would "start"...or so I thought.  After researching on the internet, I found that a lot of people would get them after exercising and also when they would go to bed but I think it can sometimes be a case of people just noticing them more at the time.  When your heart beats harder, it only seems logical that you would notice PVC's then because you are very aware of your heart beat.  I would feel mine, too, when I would go to bed also, but realized that I had to walk up a flight of stairs to get to my bedroom.  My heart rate was faster and harder by the time I reached the top, due to some excess weight and being our of shape!  But during the day when I was staying busy, I didn't feel them so much, if at all.  I also think stress plays a part in it sometimes, as well.  Stress causes our bodies to react in many different ways such as anxiety, muscle tension, headaches, etc.....it's a powerful thing!  

I would take it easy at first, with the "long run" when starting this diet.  The first few days it kinda drains your energy until you body figures out to use the stored fat for it's "fuel".  I'm sure you will listen to your body, if you start feeling weak or tired.  I just don't won't you to go into a panic if you start feeling "funny"....just take it easy, at first, until your body gets used to the diet.  I would say about a week or so but I don't know for sure.  I am one that tends to panic when I feel something unusual in my body.  I know that not everyone is like this, though!  :-)  

I don't know much about Mexican food...only that the breads and tortillas would have carbs.  I guess you just have to realize that anything made of corn or flour is gonna be full of carbs, no matter what kind of food it is...Mexican, Chinese, etc.  One thing though...I read somewhere on the internet where someone noticed that their PVC's where much worse when they had heartburn or indigestion.  I guess there could be a correlation between the two!  

All of this does make me wonder where the PVC's actually begin.  What is the cause??  The docs say they are normal and harmless but no one seems to know why people have them.  I am trying to come up with some logical reasons for this.  It seems to me that people start getting them at a fairly young age (in their 30's), although some get them sooner and some when they are older.  But what I am thinking is that maybe we are causing changes in our own bodies through the things that we have grown up eating until we begin to have the PVC's.  I already know that CARBS cause mine.  I grew up eating loads of carbs and sugar, very little veggies or protein.  I wonder that if my diet had been better as a child, if my PVC's would have started later in life or not at all.  It's kind of the "time will tell" theory!  If I had NOT polluted my body with these carbs from an early age, I wonder if I would have them now.  I am interested in finding out if PVC's have become more common over, say, the last 30 years or so, since we all began eating more and more sugar and starchy foods.  Maybe my theory is "stretching it" a little but it's a thought.  We all know that most diseases develop over time and there are reasons for those developments.  You can get skin cancer from years of exposure to the sun, you can get lung cancer from years of smoking, you can get blocked arteries from years of eating saturated fats, etc.  So why can't PVC's be a condition caused by years of consuming excessive amounts of carbohydrates?  Of course, I don't think that everyone is destined to have them, even if they do eat all of those carbs their whole life!  I honestly believe that it is something that everyone has in common....a genetic type of thing....that cause PVC's in some people.  My sisters grew up eating the exact same stuff that I did and they don't have PVC's at all.  I am also the one in the family that tends to worry about everything and I have a history of panic attacks.  So what I wonder is this....is there something in my genes that is common in yours or anyone else that has PVC's???  That is why I am curious to see if the Low-carb diet would work for ANYONE that has the "common" PVC's that are not cause by any other kind of health condition.  This is why I HOPE HOPE HOPE that someone will do a study on these common PVC's.  I am beginning to wonder if we are not all insulin resistant!!!  Is that our common ground that makes each of us have PVC's.  If so, then a low carb diet could "cure" us all....well, all of us that have no other reason for their PVC's, like heart disease.  

Yes, I know....I sure can talk! LOL  I have concerns about this subject and I really just want to help others out there with the same problem, if I can.  And I want to know WHY this happens, to me...to everyone!!  I can't sit back and let a doctor tell me that PVC's are normal, okay, harmless, etc and then not even be able to tell me why I have them.  

So what are your thoughts, on what I just said...my theory?  Does it seem logical to you or am I just a lunatic?  LOL  It's not like I have anyone to discuss the matter with that understands anything about PVC's...other that a doctor but they don't know anything either.  So where do you turn?  I think if we all can figure this thing out together, we can make a difference for people that feel they have to live with PVC's or take potentially harmful medication, to control them. I'm just looking for answers, like everyone else!

Have a great weekend!  :-)

Sherry      




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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I find this very interesting!!!!  I have been having alot of palpitations lately and wondering why????  When I look back I have drastically increased my carb intake and gained weight.  I was thinking it was the weight gain.  Another diet that I have tried was the "Male Clinic Diet", which is alot like the other low carb diets except you drink grapefruit juice with each meal, getting plenty of carbs that are healthy.  When I think about it, I had a hard time with pvc's for about 3 to 4 days then they stopped, I can't remember if they stopped completely but got better none the less.  I, again, thought it was the weight loss.  

I am going to try this starting today and see if it helps with my pvc's that I am having, and I will let you know how I am feeling in a few days.  HUMMM time will tell.

I also like what you said about certain people having this condition.  Not all people that eat cholestoral have heart disease and not all people that go in the sun get skin cancer, so it would make since for those of us who have pvc's, would have them and not others.  Maybe our bodies just can't handle carb's like diabetics can't handle sugar.  Maybe we aren't producing the "carb blocker",  if there is such a thing in our bodies, that keeps them at bay.  Maybe there might be something out there in the future that could be like an insuline shot for us.  And you were worried about crazy thoughts, wow check these out!  LOL
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Avatar_n_tn
Anything that causes acid reflux:  chocolate, tomatos, some spices, can start PVCs.  I learned this the hard way...when I was a vegetarian and on a very high carb diet.

kim
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Avatar_n_tn
Hey guys, what a helpful and informational form. I have two questions for anyone out there that could help me out. It is 4 am and I've been up for three hours with stomach rumbling (feels like acid)gas, and some heartburn. I woke up because I had a PVC. Tried to back to bed and another one came. Got up and took a gas x pill and tried to lay down. Another PVC about 5 minutes later. I tried sitting up and the PVC's only came about every fifteen minutes. And most of the time they are just a single. Everytime I feel like my bloating has subsided some by (excuse me) passing gas I have tried to lay down. Just when I am about to doze back off another PVC comes to keep me awake and I hear my stomach rumble and turn some more. The problem is that this has happenned the last two days straight. Yesterday it took two hours for the PVC's to subside after I felt my stomach have some relief. Same once last week. I have had my PVC's since 15yrs old but always when I was awake. Just 4 ,months ago did they start to wake me up. Have had all the work-ups fellas, from 72 hour holters, 30 day event moniter, echo , etc. and have been on Atenolol 50mg for 2 years. Finally after the anxiety had become too much did my cardiologist send me to an Electrophysiologist. The EP mD said evrything seems normal but would like to do an EP Exam to reassure me. First, can anyone please tell me how I can get some sleep from this problem and does anyone go through this constant waking up with PVC's associated with some stomach upset. And second , I have a great deal of anxiety about this EP exam and if I should do it. Can Anyone tell me if they have had one done, what did it feel like, and what your doctor told you the risks were. Thanks to anyone that could help.
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Avatar_n_tn
Everyone, please read the discussion on "Heavy beating/palpitations".  They also identified carbs as the culprit. To understand why pasta and rice give you palps but fruit and veggies don't I recommend a book called GOOD CARBS BAD CARBS.  It is WONDERFUL.  You don't have to eliminate the carbs that are good for you to eliminate the PVCs.
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