I am a 33 year male with a high colestrol (270)and trigylisrides (700+), I have had a rapid pulse for as long as I can remember. My pulse at rest is around 100-105. I cycle moderatlly and my pulse shoots to about 195-205, I am really starting to worry.
I had a treadmill test done about 5 years ago, and I remember the technician saying "you have a nervous ticker", I thought that was a minor problem. Recentlly I hav an EKG and it came out ab-normal and I am due to have a follow-up treadmill next week. The x-ray showed a enlarged heart, the doctor did'nt seem much concerned. I am scared to death. Please give me some advise as to who I shpuld see and what tests I need to have performed.
Thanking you in advance.
Dear AJ, thank you for your question. Your resting pulse rate is higher than
normal (60-90) and could indicate many things. But, first, your cholesterol and
triglycerides are very high and should be treated aggressively with medications
to lower the lipids. You may have a hereditary form of high cholesterol levels
and if the cholesterol is controlled, you should be able to avoid problems later
in life. Second, your high resting pulse rate could be a rhythm disturbance of
the heart or a faster than normal regular sinus rhythm. Rhythm disturbances that
can cause a chronically fast heart rate mainly originate in the atria (upper
chambers of the heart) and are caused by extra conduction pathways between the atria
and the ventricles. These type of rhythm disturbances can be identified by
wearing a portable heart monitor called a Holter Monitor. The normal heart
rhythm called sinus rhythm can accelerate to sinus tachycardia from conditions
like hyperthyroidism, anemia (low blood counts), chronic fevers, and sometimes
elevated levels of certain hormones in the bloodstream. For starters, simple
tests like a blood count, a TSH level (to measure thyroid function), and a
portable heart monitor would provide a lot of useful information. A stress
test is also a good idea to determine the heart rate response to exercise and
to see what happens to the ECG. An echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) can
evaluate left ventricular function, valvular function, and the size of the heart.
This test can determine if your heart is truly enlarged (as suggested by the
chest x-ray). Your heart rate at exercise is usually only seen in elite athletes
because most people can't sustain a heart rate that fast during exercise. Thus,
I hope this information is useful to you. Please write back if you have further
questions or if you have any information from the tests you've had done.
Information provided in the heart forum is for general purposes only. Specific
diagnoses and therapies can only be provided by your physician.
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