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heart palpitations
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heart palpitations

Iam a 35 year old mother of two and have been having heart palitations for years. I also have anxiety attacks starting years before the heart palpitations.My question is everyday Iam having these palipatations and everyday Iam having anxiety attacks they seem to go hand in hand. I have not had my heart checked out in about three years as I used to make several trips to the er. Im am so scared all the time that Iam going to have a heart attack.. What can I be doing if anything??
                                                          














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239757_tn?1213813182
crusin,

At age 35 and being a woman, your overall risk of having a heart attack is extremely low.  Of course this is little reassurance when it's you having the symptoms. But thats why you have gone to get examined by medical personel when you've had your episodes.

If you search through this forum, you will see that many are afflicted with palpitations, and in some they can cause a great deal of anxiety and suffering.  If you've have no structural heart disease, palpitations are relatively benign from a prognostic standpoint. You might search back to see how others have dealth with thier anxiety and symptoms.

Good luck
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Just wanted to offer some support.  I'm 33 with 3 children and have been where you're at.  It becomes a cycle, anxiety causing palpitations and then palpitations causing anxiety.  I too spent many evenings in the ER and countless doctor's visits.  All which reassure me that I have PVC's and my heart is structurally normal.  Hang in there and read this forum, it is very comforting.
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I've had the same: palpitations and panic attacks.  I saw my doctor for the former, and a psychologist for the latter.  She recommended an EXCELLENT book, "The Panic Attack and Phobia Book."  It has some excellent techniques in there for controlling panic attacks -- I know because those techniques have worked for me.

Best of luck.
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Hi Crusin

I was curious to know if you have ever been evaluated by a cardiologist, or what your EKG's at the ER have shown?  It may be prudent to have an eval with a cardiologist just for peace of mind.  
I agree with the CCF Dr. about your risk for heart attack being almost non-existant, because thats what they told me also at Duke.

I had experienced palps and some unusual heart rhythms back in my 20's and after 6-7 years my family Dr. sent me to a cardio who ordered an echo and the other standard tests, and found a moderate prolapse of the mitral valve, which could have precipitated the earlier symptoms.  The Dr. put me on 2 meds. and I haven't had any problems since. I do follow up with the cadio every 6 months.  

All that to say that sometimes it's worth being evaluated just for peace of mind, which can help with the anxiety.

All the best.
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Thanks to you all for your info and support. Actually after I posted my Q I read alot in the forum about palps and anxiety.Iam feeling prety good today after reading everyones similar problems and think this is just what I needed (to know many have the same symptoms.. I dont really recall what my ekg and other tests were. At the time I was prety much relieved  just to hear them say it was common and I was Just one of the unlucky ones who could really feel them. Im wondering what pvc and all the other related terms stand for?? Thank you
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pvc is a premature ventricular contraction.  AA pac is a premature atrial contraction.  I suffer from pvcs in the form of bigeminy.  Thats a pvc a normal beat then another pvc and so on in that pattern.  I know how nasty they make you feel and how much anxiety they can cause.  Its a vicious cycle.....try hanging in there.
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i suffer also and the cardiologist has me on atenolol 25 mg every other day..its seems to have helped only been to the ER once in the past yr.
best of luck to all.. also try green tea and magnesium 500 mg
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I think before I can begin to deal with my anxiety I should have
a check up just to make sure since it has been at least three years since my last er visit. I wasnt able to follow up with a pcp as we are a fisherman family and not always insured.A list of tests to ask for would be great.
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I would not not drink tea with palps caffine is best avoided.
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The actual title of the book I mentioned above is "The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook," by Edmund J. Bourne, Ph.D.  Published by New Harbinger Publications, Inc.
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Hello, I know this is somewhat off topic, however, in over a year of trying, I've never been able to get a question out.  Anyway, to my question.

When I was around 11, while jumping off a wall, I had a feeling like my heart dropped into my stomach and it began beating fast.  At the time I had no clue, and after about 20 minutes it slowed down to normal instantly.  This happened again around 12, and again at about age 14.  When it happened at 14, I was taken to the ER and they placed me in a holster.  Nothing abnormal was noticed, however, they did an ultrasound on my heart, and said all my valves were normal etc.  This never really bothered me, in fact I thought it was kinda fun to show other people how fast my heart was beating.  Until, I was playing baseball and it happened again around 15.  I nearly passed out and was so freaked out I pulled myself out of the game.  About a year or so passed and I started having something else.  I guess they are called PVC's?  I thought they were a result of having gas, but they would happen a lot when I drank soda.  I didn't have a episode of SVT again, however, until I was 17.  This time, I had 2 SVT episodes within 2 weeks.  Regardless of this, I joined the Army, and for the next 5 years, not a SINGLE case of SVT, and my PVC's were almost non existant, except after exercise as I was calming down, I'd have one or two here and there.

Now to my main question, I joined the militar at 18, had around 7 episodes of SVT between age 11-18, with PVC's starting around age 16.  Then, while joining the Army, nothing for the 3 years I served on active duty, except a minor PVC here and there after a run.  After I left the Army, I didn't have any problems at all for the next 2 years.  Then, the PVC's started again, only worse.  Sometimes I'd sit and count them per minute and would reach nearly 30 in 1 minute.  My resting HR was always around 70, so you can imagine how freaky that is.  Then, at age 23, I had my first episode of SVT in over 5 years, the nurse at my work, couldn't even guess at my pulse, but my BP was 140/80 and as I calmed myself down it stopped.  A week later, it happened again.  For the next year after those episodes, I would have entire weeks of just PVC after PVC, to the point I was afraid to even do anything, as I would stop whenever it happened, and when they'd come 3-4 in a row, I'd totally shut down and go inside.  Then, last month, just over a year since the last 2 episodes happened, the SVT happened again, but it stopped really quickly, about 10 minutes.  I had been reading these boards since the first set happened since leaving the Army, so I stayed calm and it went fast.  Then, one day at work, I was having really bad PVC's, and I stood up, and BOOM, there goes my heart.  Not only did I have SVT, but the PVC's were there as well, which put me into a panic.  It had never lasted this long before, and finally I went to the ER.  When they found out it had been nearly an hour and a half that my heart was in SVT, with a HR of 220, they gave me some injection which felt like I was having a heart attack.  A few minutes afterwards my HR was down to 110, and I was released.  

Wow, this is long, I'am very sorry, but I wanted to detail everything.....Anyway, I'm trying to start running again, and getting back into good shape, but the PVC's happen at rest....while running its nearly unbearable...I'm seriously afraid my heart will stop, or in my opinion anyway, go into SVT while running.  On the other hand, the only time my heart didn't have these problems was while I was in good cardio shape....I don't know if that was just luck?  Or it that has anything to do with this or not, however, I'm to the point now...24 years old, that i'd rather go out and have a freakin heart attack then sit at my house afraid to play with my kids.  Ablation is pretty much out of the question for me, as I have no health insurance at the time, but I just can't take this **** of a life this has left me with.  My wife doesn't understand, and she acts like I make this stuff up.  Hell, she was mad at me for costing us 2,000 for the ER visit.  

So...has anyone had anything similiar happen with a high rate of exercise?  Or was I just lucky for those 5 years I was in great shape?  And, is most of this in my head? or is this something that is very serious, and life threatening if I exercise heavily?  I guess I don't really care anymore, I'd rather die then live and fear going to the theme park and go on a ride just in CASE my SVT starts while on the coaster.....
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Dear Armyman
What a shame you can't manage to post to the ccf, if I were you I'd save on the computer what you have just written and keep on trying to post.
Firstly - my full sympathies go out to you and I'm very sorry your wife isn't understanding of what you are going through which is indeed terrifying - I and many others on this forum could tell similar stories to yours.  I am in remission from pvcs/svt at the moment and so my life is happy and normal and every day I am incredibly grateful for that.
I am only a fellow sufferer and not in the medical profession in any way but from my understanding it sounds suspiciously to me as if you have an accessory pathway in the heart (maybe more than one).  If this is the problem then I personally believe in ablation as ablations have a high success rate and offer a complete cure.  If I were you I'd beg, borrow or steal to get the money together to get it done.  
Your problem isn't going to go away.
Very best wishes to you.
Linda
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21064_tn?1309312333
Hi...I agree with Linda...Cut and paste your post and save it in WORD (or somewhere similar). I had good luck posting around 8:45 EST. I suggested that time to a few others and they were also able to get their questions posted. Please keep trying. You have a great quesiton and I'm sure there are others who would love to read the doctor's response.

I am a former chronic pvc sufferer and I can tell you that there are a number of us who do understand your frustration. My pvcs waxed and wanted from my late teens until my early-mid 40's. I think it's difficult for others around us to believe we feel lousy because we seem "normal" and healthy. Have you had a complete physical? a recent EKG or echocardiogram? Might be worth the expense. I had pvcs for many years and they were always considered benign. However, because I have MVP and a leaky valve I have an echo every year. In my case, the chronic pvcs led to cardiomyopathy (weakening of the heart muscle). I'm not telling you this to scare you because it is indeed VERY rare. I just want people to know that it CAN cause problems in rare cases. However, once your doctor is able to rule out any structural problems, you might want to ask him/her if you could benefit from a prescription RX. The medicines often work wonders to alleviate the symptoms.  

Oh, have they been able to capture the SVT on a monitor? I think that's half the battle. Once your doctor can "see" what you "feel," it can be more helpful in easing your anxiety.

Good luck armyman and thanks for serving : )
connie
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Avatar_n_tn
Most people who have success post between 7-9am EST.  

You just have to keep trying!  Also, there is a word limit for the original poster, so work on condensing your question a bit.
Have it ready to copy and paste if you suddenly get in!

good luck to you!
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I agree with gaspipe. Green tea is not the best thing to drink when suffering arrthymias of any kind.  The properties of green tea offer many positive benefits but not heart palpitations.

Glenn
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There is no evidence that low dose of caffeine present in green tea can cause arryhtmias. In fact, one study find that modest dose of caffiene actually increases HRV (the lower the HRV, the higher risk of sudden death - HRV is an independent risk factor for sudden death).

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=15111532&dopt=Abstract

The article, Meyers, M. G., "Caffeine and Cardiac Arrhythmias," Annals of Internal Medicine. 114:147-50, 1991, finds no concrete evidence that caffiene worsen arrthymias after reviewing all studies on caffeine and arryhmias.

Green tea is rich in many antioxidants that are beneficial to the heart. I drink green tea twice a day. Even just two cups a day are believed to prevent high blood pressure.

If you're sensitive to caffeine, don't take it. It's that simple.

-jeff
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hi armyman sorry to hear of your plight, but you are in the same boat with many others. i know that is no consolation,but there is hope. since you were in the army aren't you entitled to get medical help from the v.a. i do and have gotten some great drugs from them such as amiodarone, sotalol, atenolol, toprol etc. amiodarone in particular cured my atrial fib. and palpitations for 11 years before it stopped working. i then went for ablations which have helped. i know that vets have been able to get ablations thru the v.a. i hope you are eligible for v.a. coverage. if so try them
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i was able to post for the first time a few weks ago at 10am eastern time.

for the panic attacks, try the mitral valve prolapse syndrome website as they have a question area for panic attacks.  i take zoloft for my panic attacks, but have received much help from the people at this mvps website.
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Hi there,
I'm new here, but can totally relate to what you're feeling. I'm 33, and was diagnosed with pvc (palpitations) last year. After realizing what the "skipped beats" felt like, I recalled that I've had this condition since I was much younger, but out of nowhere, they became frequent and strong.
I saw a cardiologist, he did a stress echo on me, an ekg and ecg. I wore an event monitor for 30 days, and recorded and transmitted my ekgs from when I felt the palpitations. I met again with my cardiologist after the monitoring period was over, and he told me that pvcs are basically harmless, unless they are persistent and continue to occur. As an option (since they really bothered me) he put me on Toprol 25mg. After a few weeks, that didn't do the trick, and we upped it to 37.5mg. My problem is that I started out w/ low blood pressure, and the Toprol lowered it to unsafe levels (80/52). I'm now on Toprol and Felcainide. I can relate to your feelings of panic and anxiety. You will make your pvcs worse with these feelings, ask me how I know LOL... Anyhow, I really think you'll have peace of mind by letting a cardiologist check you out. Then, when you have the pvcs, you'll know that's what it is. Now, my hubby has pvcs , but with chest pain. That's another situation altogether, and he has had panic attacks associated with it too.
I hope this helps.
Angela
***@****
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I dont know if its the relief of knowing there are a lot of other people with pvc or my cutting way down on the coffee. But just since I posted my Question and read the commets my palps have only been happening a few times through out the day unlike the off and on all day long. I really appreciate all the commets. I think it helped alot and now iam going to find a site for anxiety support.. Thank you all.......
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try the mitral valve prolapse syndrome website. the people are great there and have great advice for anxiety and what to take to help lesson the palps.  thats where i went when i had my panic attacks and the people there where so helpful, kind and supportive!
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I know I may be pc( computer) lol challanged but can't seem to get to the mitral valve website..????? Please Help!!!! if possible post the website address ....I am always looking for ways to help deal with these darn pvc's.I have had panic attacks for 9 years but recently have had the pvc's and few rare premature pac's. Some days no pvc's then boom they hit again.  My doctor has run the routine tests and states that my pvc's are not harmful.I am so glad to have found this forum and can relate to others who experience this in their daily life. I do not have mvp but was diagnosed with hashimoto's thyroiditis a couple of years ago, my thyroid numbers are always normal so no meds for that.43 and female  I also agree with one of the other posts about hormones...Good luck to all and thanks for the helpful info, Kelly
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My Dad has ventricular tachycardia without heart disease and I caanot seem to find any info. on this exceot for people with heart damage.
He had a heart cath and they found it is in the lower chamber, it only happens sporadically and usually only when he is jogging, he feels as if he will pass out and his normal reating HR of 46-52 goes up to well over 100BPM. He does also have anxiety, my question is can this be hapening from the anxiety that he will have another attack? Can axiety cause this or is it strcitly medical?

He weighs 126 pounds, eats great and has been an avid biker and jogger for the past 30 years.

I am really worried, any info. would be greatly appreciated!

Thank You,

Beth
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Avatar_n_tn
http://www.mvpsupport.com/


thats the website for the mitral valve prolapse syndrome website.
not everyone has MVP but just about all have palps, pvc's ,svt's
ect.  others suffer from anxiety and panic and some want advice about medicines. but everyone is real supportive.
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Avatar_n_tn
Sounds similar to my condition MVP (mitral valve prolapse)

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=mitral%20valve%20prolapse

ask your PCP
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Hello from Australia,


I need to vent!

Two & a half weeks ago, I started to experience frequent "palpitations",tightness in the chest, tiredness & SOB. I have had palpatations before but not quiet like this. I took myself off to my local GP after day 3 of putting up with them. Anyways... to cut a long story short....I had blood works,chest x-ray, Holter monitor. Conclusion: I have ventricular ectopic heart beats.Approx. 10,000 over a 24 hr period.
I saw a cardiologist today,( mind you, my heart barely fluttered when I was having an Echo done!)he assured me all was fine structurely with my heart & had no idea why I was experiencing the other symptoms, as far as he was concerned, his job was done.
He felt stongly opposed to putting me on medication for them & said the 'meds' do more long term harm than good.
Well that is great...I don't think the side effects of the medication are worth it either...however.....I am amazed that even after cutting out all caffeine, alcohol, limiting stress etc.....that one just has to "learn to live with it".

I am not feeling particulary positive on having to accomodate these extra beats!!!!!

Thanks for listening/reading :-)

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Hello Im sorry to hear that you were kind of left to fend for yourself, I have been there. Every time I had ended up in the ER the mention of anxiety resulted in a roll of the eyes. What I was feeling was real and very scary pvc..I did not no at the time that my having anxiety attacks could cause palps, Im not saying you have panic/anxiety just that having it can cause so many symptoms. I have yet to get another evaluation done on the heart palps but will follow up for sure just not going to mentions my years of dealing with panic/anxiety. to see if Iam taken a little more serious..I hope you get replys from everyone here they are very caring..

                  crusin1969
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Thanks for your thoughts crusin1969......I am going to see my GP tomorrow & am concidering getting a second opinion.


Cheers for now....
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Hello!

Another person from Australia here.  I must say that I found this forum very, very comforting.  I had no idea so many people suffered from palpitations on such a regular basis.  And, here I was thinking I was going mad!

I am a 36year old female, 30 weeks pregnant with baby #2 and have been experiencing really bad palpitations (feels like a missed beat) for the past three weeks. When I say frequent I mean all day everyday with may 2 or 3 hours palp free if I'm lucky. I have seen my GP about this and also discussed it with my OB.  Both seem unconcerned.  My GP felt two palps while he was examining me and said he was confident it was all begnin.  OB thinks the same but has on referred me to a cardiologist to try and ease my anxiety about what's happening to me.

I saw a cardo three years ago when I was pregnant with my first child as I had a few episodes of palps that stopped within a few minutes.  I had an ekg and an echo/ultrasound thingy and everything appeared normal.  So, that was that. The thing is I'm really freaking out with what's happening to me at the moment.  I also suffer from panic attacks, but I've had these under control for the last two years, at least they were up until this stress with the heart palps.  I am unable to get an appt with the cardio until Friday of this week and I just don't know how I'll cope up until then.  I'm really having a hard time sleeping at night because I feel my heart flip flop every 30 seconds or so.

Does anyone else suffer with this?  Have you gone on to find out it's nothing?  Please any input would be much appreciated.

Thanks for listening.
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