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Symptoms
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Symptoms

Hello Doctor,I am 24 and I have been wondering about random symptoms I have been having over the past year. Some days I'll feel great, I wouldn't say most days, and the others I'm feeling tired, short of breath, anxious and irratable. I have found myself worring over my health because of the tiredness and such because I am young and I figure I shouldn't feel this way. I have had my heart checked and tests came back good but almost everytime I feel ill I link it back to my heart (benign PVC's PAC's Tachy).Do you think I have an anxiety disorder? Because it has been driving me nuts over this past year and thats kind of sudden to start having anxiety?Anyway, if I do I want to see a counceller or something, but I don't want to dismiss actual health problems.My cardio said not to worry about my heart yet I worry.That to me is messed up and I can't seem to stop it.I,as I have posted, have palps that leave me feeling like someone punched me in the stomach and a sinking feeling in my chest.If I'm exercising, sexually active or whatever during these times(I can have 3/min for hours maybe more at times)I find it hard to comprehend to "ignor them".I'm also sad that I can never have one alcholic beverage for fear of my heart stopping because I'd have so many, and I can feel everyone.Believe me I want to move on with my life but the dread I feel when they happen is almost like my gut telling me "get help, somethings wrong", should I ignor that? What symptoms only would signify that I should see a doctor? I have chest pain that is intense that I can't move for a min(stitchy).Thank-you Dr
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74076_tn?1189759432
Hi Tristan,

Sorry for the delay post. I was away from home and my computer crashed.

Sorry to hear you haven't been feeling well.  Your symptoms are very common.  It is very common to see someone in clinic as a second opinion that is young (almost always young) and has a had a completely normal cardiac work up.  They are convinced something is wrong with their heart and are afraid their doctor is just missing the signs or hasn't ordered the right tests.  In these situations the cause is almost always an anxiety disorder.  The problem is the only person that posts this situation is the exception, so the people that look on the internet find it  easy to find the exceptions.

Do you think I have an anxiety disorder?

It sounds like it is very possible.  If you haven't had a second opinion, consider having one.  Not because I think something is being missed but because you need reassurance that nothing is missed.  If you decide on a second opinion, bring a copy of echo (video tape or CD/DVD), ekg's and any other cardiac tests so your doctor doesn't have to reorder them if they are satisfied with the quality.

Because it has been driving me nuts over this past year and thats kind of sudden to start having anxiety?

The average ages to start having an anxiety disorder is mid-late twenties, early thirties.


If I'm exercising, sexually active or whatever during these times(I can have 3/min for hours maybe more at times)I find it hard to comprehend to "ignor them".

when people say ignor them, think of it more like acknowledging them but choosing not to listien -- like you drunk brother-in-law over the holidays (you can hear him but you choose not to react because you know that nothing you can say will change it).  Sorry for the bad example.

I'm also sad that I can never have one alcholic beverage for fear of my heart stopping because I'd have so many, and I can feel everyone.

Your heart will not stop with alcohol.


Believe me I want to move on with my life but the dread I feel when they happen is almost like my gut telling me "get help, somethings wrong", should I ignor that?


Only ignore it after you have seen your doctor for the symptoms.   If your doctor is convinced the symptoms you are having is not dangerous, then proceed.

What symptoms only would signify that I should see a doctor?

That is a tough one to answer.  If you have seen your doctor for the same symptoms that you are having and they are ok with it -- then you don't need to see a doctor.  You have to use a little common sense though -- if the character of your pain changes, then it is worth re-evaluating.

Consider getting a second opinion.  If both doctors think you are ok, then consider seeing a theurapist for anxiety.

I hope this helps.
24 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
See my answer to you below.  Just have to say here, yes to everything you said, I've been through and thought about too. Who wouldn't be anxious or worried at any age that this starts up. There are some people who never feel a single early beat or don't notice tachycardia and there are those of us who feel everything. Extra sensitive autonomic nervous system.

The dread feeling/anxious will almost always bring up the worrying that "maybe the dr's are missing something". It gets to the point that we have to try to finally believe our dr., take their reassurance that our heart is fine no matter what it throws out at us.

Work on that every day, and the less palpitations,early beats and tachy you feel each day give you a little mor confidence that you can get through this.

It's a long road for some and shorter for others, but you can get there. Even when a setback hits, you can get back on track.
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Avatar_n_tn
I find that when I am getting pvc's, I also feel tired, down and irritable. They are depressing. Who would feel upbeat and enthusiastic with such a strange feeling in their chest? Did you try taking a beta blocker to reduce the freqency? After dealing with these things for twenty years, I would recommend spending some time reading the postings on this forum and the doctor's responses for reassurance and then just completely ignore them and live your life normally. I am very sensitive to alcohol and sometimes I will just have a few sips of wine which usually does not bring them on. If it does, then it won't kill you. You just have more of them and then it will pass. Also, something to think about... I find that when I am taking antibiotics I have no pvc's. Not to say that your doctor will prescribe antibiotics for a heart issue but pay attention to next time you happen to be on an antibiotic and if they do go away. I plan on asking the cardiologist about this next time I see him.
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Avatar_n_tn
I thank you both for your comments, they really helped me when I read them. I will keep the antibiotic thing in mind for sure and again, thanks for sharing your experiences, that makes me feel like I am not the only one this way.
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124876_tn?1189759433
I am sorry you are going through this. I just wanted to share a little bit with you so you may feel a little better. I am a 32 year old female and I have had these "benign" beats since I was 18! I have had countless EKG's,Echocardiograms,holter monitors etc..and they all say the same..that there is nothing to worry about and to just go on with living a normal life. That is the hardest thing in the world to do. I am in a constant struggle with these things. I think about dying every minute of the day and it stops me from living a "normal" life. At this point, once you have had the all clear from your doc, then it becomes a battle with your anxiety. That is really what most of us are dealing with here. This forum has done wonders for me and I hope it will help you as well. I have actually made a pretty good friend on here that we talk each other through these episodes quite often. Feel free to come back here as often as you need...You are NOT alone...
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Avatar_n_tn
Several people here have mentioned that getting therapy for anxiety has helped them enormously.
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Avatar_n_tn
i have palps with anxiety its changed my life 2 im 27 and a male i feel im 2 young 2 have this ****
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been there... "I think about dying every minute of the day and it stops me from living a "normal" life". However, twenty years later I am still alive and deeply regretting all those hours I spent worrying about dying. What a colossal waste of time and life! It's hard to hear someone else say it. There's no going back but I have gotten much better at just ignoring them and going about my business and living life despite the pvc's trying to get in the way. What's helped me also is to say to myself okay, so they will kill me. Just accept it and have fun while you can. Of course, most likely you will die of something completely unrelated. I agree, it's important to have a friend who is going through the same thing for support and this forum has helped me immensely. If it were not for this site, I would still be completely anxiety ridden and crippled by pvc's. Now I am on no medication except for propranolol for when they get really bad. I did take an SSRI in the past though and that worked miracles as far as the anxiety from the pvc's was concerned. I highly recommend it for anyone who can't talk themselves out of feeling overwhelming fear and panic over their pvc's. You only live once and you have to deal with them any way you can.
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124876_tn?1189759433
I totally know what you are saying. I mean, logically, you are right and I KNOW that, but it is just SO hard to remember that when your palps are coming on strong and you don't understand why..I have a young son and I want to be around to see him grow..Actually, I just thought about it, and I really am somewhat absent in his life as well as mine...I am always living in fear instead of just living! Well, I will take your words to heart and try to remember them when I am having a bad moment...thank you for hearing me..
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Avatar_n_tn
THANKS for the stories! They really are helping me alot to get my head around this stuff. It's just so darn hard sometimes...to deal with. I feel true impending doom like feelings when I get mine, and Goodness forbid if I get a sensation that feels like two together, THAT DOES ME IN FOR A PANICY MOMENT!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
i have the same thing i had svt and after the ablation that was done 5 years ago, i still experience palpitations that have been so i am told nothing to worry about!! i know the feeling of anxiety, being scared. i hate it!
i want you and everyone else to be conscience of what we eat. there are many things that contain preservatives and added fats oils, colors, sugars etc!! some are known to cause allergic reactions such as palpitations.
some herbal supplements can cause the so can caffiene, lots of sugar, sodium, over the counter meds too. we really have to be aware of what we put in our body to help prevent some of these things.
there are many contributions we never think to consider that have a domino effect on your bodies system.
not eating right and not getting good sleep, stress management also, hormones, period, thyroid.
it is very comforting to know that we have eachother to share our experinces with!!! ; )
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Avatar_f_tn
I am also in this "boat". I am a 27yr old female. Ive been having these things since i was 16. Mine feel like little flutters that take your breath away and only last for a second or two. Ive been to a cardiologist,went to the er,been to my regualar doc and they all tell me that im fine. I do take atenolol for tachycardia and they say that the tachycardia is due to anxiety. Tonight i was bent over doing laundry and got a flutter and it was bad. ive noticed that when i get them and i am bent over they feel worse. Does anyone elses feel this way???? As you can see, this has me freaked out now and i am searching the internet for answers..that right there should tell me i have anxiety!
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Avatar_n_tn
I just wanted to let you know that I also get the flutters and Yes, they feel worse when I am bent over or stooped down. Sometimes I think I hate those the worse even though I'm pretty sure mine are only PACs running together which are less concerning for the doctors than the PVC which make the BIG THUMPS.(OK- truth is doc doesn't care about either one of them since my heart has been checked out as structurally normal.)It is the flutters which definately take my breath away every time they come. The BIG THUMPS might or might not take my breath away.

Just yesterday my heart felt like it was quivering deep in my chest for a few seconds. It did this TWICE yesterday-not the thumps or the flutters. It felt like it quivered. (Of course it probably did not. It was probably only a run of PACs again.) Scared the *%#@ out of me and sent me into the 'I'm gonna die mode'-I didn't.

Do any of you get the quivering heart sensation from time to time? Please tell me if you do. It would help me not worry as much about them. They last the longest but never make me feel breathless or dizzy so they can't be bad like VT. I'm quessing a tachy episode. ???
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had a quivery sensation before, it was like no other symptoms with it though, no breathlessness and etc. I was just like wtf is that feeling? I get a buzz type feeling in my chest at times too, I was having spurts of those awhile back, weird huh?

It's so hard to believe that you all feel like me...it makes me feel less anxious, I dunno, it's just the days when even without a whole lotta palps my heart just seems outta rhythm and I am aware of every beat.

Does anyone ever get the strong beats with pulsing neck vessles when your tired and taking a nap or sleeping? I have days when I wake up and my heart just wants to beat super fast.
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Avatar_n_tn
I get thumps just about anytime I take a nap or try to rest. They wake me up at least once a night sometimes almost every hour. Woke me up at 5:30 a.m. today with 6 in a row. I think this happens to a lot of people with heart rhythm problems.  I have had this daily for 7 years now and often feel really sleep deprived.
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Avatar_f_tn
i know how you all feel! it is sooo reassuring to know im not the only one out there! Ive never been symptamatic while wearing a monitor so that is why i have it in my head that the doctors are missing something. But, they are not worried and say im fine.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi everyone.  I am getting so frustrated with the way that my heart feels...or the way that I feel-everyday!  Sometimes I wish that my heart would stop so that I don't worry about it anymore.  I have so many symptoms, that change all of the time.  The most recent feelings I have had have been skipped beats that hurt.  They feel like my heart is getting a tiny electrical shock.  They are definitely more frequent when I exercise.  I have had all of the tests done.  But, I have never had an episode while tested.  I recently started a running program, but had to stop because the skipped beats were so bad, all throughout the day, that it scared me to death.  My heart almost feels better when I'm not trying to become physically fit.  And this may sound weird, but sometimes I can stop the skipped beat, or the electrical impulse, by moving my eyes a certain way.  Does this happen to anyone else....are there any doctors on this forum?  could the eye thing and heart palpitations be something in my brain....like with the pituitary gland?  or a nerve disorder and not necessarily a heart problem?  I feel like I am having to diagnose myself because the doctors I have seen give me no direction.  They give me one test, and send me on my way...still searching for answers.  But it is my life, and my health, and I wish I could find just one doctor that cared about it as much as me.  Thanks.
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Avatar_m_tn
I have learned to just ignore them 99% of the time. But about once every 3 months I can tell I am getting a panic attack and then for the rest of the night I am on edge. I try to think of a palpitation like a muscle cramp or eye twitch just something you have to put up with.
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Avatar_n_tn
Exactly, that's what you have to do. Think of it as an annoying twitch. The only thing I have stopped doing because of the pvc's is drinking more than a few sips of alcohol. Still drink coffee, exercise, vacation... After twenty years of them I've learned they are actually NOT going to kill me and refuse to waste one more second of my time and attention on them. Good luck to all of you, and do whatever you need to do (ssri's, tranquilizers etc...) to get over your anxiety, or you may waste years of your life for nothing.
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Avatar_n_tn
How did you get to that point mentally, where you can just say "who cares" and even drink coffee and stuff and not mind the extra ones? What tests have you had done in the past and do you ignor even the yuckiest big nasty pvcs??? I wanna know how you do it, I want to be that way too!
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Avatar_n_tn
I went years living around my pvc's. If I was getting a lot of them I would stay home and avoid social situations. Every time I would get them I would automatically go into panic mode and wouldn't leave the house without my Propranolol "just in case". I would get really depressed and anxious over them and really let them limit my life. I couldn't believe they weren't dangerous, so basically what I did was a.) went back to the cardiologist and said i am living in fear, please explain why and what proof you have that these are not dangerous. He cited studies showing I was at no increased risk of death than the general public (I had stress, echo and all the tests - normal). b) spent hours reading postings on this site, and realized there are people just like me - loads of them - who have way more pvc's than me and are still alive to talk about it. All say their doctors told them the same thing, that they are not dangerous. Basically, I finally felt I had enought knowledge to believe that they are not going to kill me. The fear comes from the unknown. Plus I'm going on twenty years now. If they were going to kill me, it would have happened by now. I realized no matter what I ate or did, I would get pvc's so decided not to stop things I love like coffee. Even the cardiologist (who gets them himself) said unless it's a known trigger, don't change your life for them. I did give up alcohol for the most part, but that's not a big thing for me anyway. REALLY, you are okay and you just need to mentally believe it. Spend hours if you need to on this site and you will feel much better about the whole thing. You are not alone. By they way, I've had all types of pvc's - big, heavy ones, long runs of bigeminy (every other beat) for hours, thousands per day... you name it. I was however, almost completely PVC free while on antibiotics, but it's not like I can just take that as a preventative. You should try taking magnesium and potassium every day, it does help some people.


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Avatar_n_tn
I can certainly relate to the many stories and situations being discussed here. These things are miserable, and yes, they can be life changing...not in the medical sense, but from the fear.

My bad palp episodes started in 1992. Ended up in the ER. Have had countless bouts of sinus tach, one nasty SVT episode in 2002, and more PVC's (flops, flips, quivers, thuds, etc) than I care to recall.

Yes, bending over can be a real adventure with PVC's. Reaching straight out as if to get something from the back row on a shelf can be problematic, as can simply turning over in bed at night.

I understand how folks become O/C about this...and would not wish the misery on my worst enemy.

Be well.

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Avatar_n_tn
Al Dente has made the point that everyone with funky beats should be thoroughly evaluated and tested, but once several docs have jumped you through all the hoops, found your heart healthy, and suggested that anxiety is a problem, well, then, anxiety IS the problem.  So, how to deal with it?

Some people can pull themselves up by their own bootstraps.  Some people get help from books like Claire Weeks' excellent, old-fashioned "Hope and Help For Your Nerves."  Some people profit from professional talk therapy, cognitive therapy, and so on.  And some people find themselves stalled, not sure what to do, but suffering and putting their lives on hold.  This is not a heck of a lot of fun.

My bouts of pvcs and panic attacks occur simultaneously.  I cannot tell which is cause and which is effect, but I have learned that, for myself, the quickest way out of the emotional mess is an SSRI that my pharmacologically-savvy shrink and I have discussed and decided on.

I am a quick responder, and within a day and a half on zoloft, my awareness of these weird beats diminishes, my panic disappears for the most part, and the number of pvcs actia;;u seems to drop.  In any case, I really don't care about them anymore, and can get on with my life.  Generally, I only need to take these drugs for a couple of months before weaning off them, though a few times, it has been longer.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been check out by only one heart doctor but his word is trusted and known throughout this area, he is very througho and did all the tests x 2. He is convinced I should move on...is this enough to follow on and move on?
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