Anxiety and Irregular Heart Rhythm
by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
I am a 21 year old female and for about 5 months now have been dealing with severe anxiety (or so I believe). I will get lightheaded and dizzy, hot, irregularly strong or fast heartbeat and feel like I am just going to pass out. I've seen multiple doctors, including a cardiologist, who tell me I'm fine and it's just normal anxiety. But every medicine I take doesn't help. I'd actually rather cure this without medicine but I just don't have the time with my 1 and a half year old son. I know a lot contributes to my anxiety, but I am just so concerned it could be something to do with my heart. Every time I just so much as feel an irregular beat I reach for my pulse to make sure it's still beating. This morning I was woken up in a panic around 5am and couldn't breathe. My heart was pounding and I became lightheaded. dizzy, and hot. I grabbed some water and walked around my house to calm down and my heart started racing probably like 130 to 140 and I did some breathing exercises to calm down. After about 5 or so minutes my heart rate was normal, but I was shaking and cold and felt sick to my stomach. I wasn't able to go back to sleep because when I laid down, I got hot and lightheaded again. If it weren't for the problems with my heart, I would have such severe anxiety. Please help! What on earth is going on??
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Member Comments (45)
by JamesAA, Jan 10, 2012
Mandy I just replied to your other post in my thread, now I saw this thread.  How many of these PVCs (skipped beats) do you have per day, or per hour, or even per minute?  Do you know my cardiologist said some of his patients skip beats every other beat all day?  Crazy right?  And that is still considered "safe" or normal if their heart is otherwise ok.  Some people never feel any PVCs, whereas others, like me, feel every single one.  Your dizziness and lightheadedness is no doubt caused from a panic attack/sever anxiety.  Trust me.  You're NOT going to die....just feels that way.  I've experienced that many times and it freaked me out the first few times (when I was 26).  You have a child, as do I.  Don't let those damn PVCs ruin your life.  They make me mad as hell because when I get anxiety from them I know I'm not going to be as good a father to my boy, and that makes me in turn really hate these PVCs.  Our kids need us, but when we are consumed with fear it's hard to be there for them.  So my advice to you, and me, is to focus on them and realize we ARE ok.  The experts (our Dr's) say so, so let's take a deep breath, relax and trust them.  Easier said then done, lol, but knowledge is power here and it will ultimately be our ticket to peace of mind and a happy life!!!  :)
by michellepetkus, Jan 10, 2012
Does this beat start and stop suddenly?  Are you sure it was only 140?  Do you have a heart rate monitor watch you can use to get a more accurate count?  When you were at the cardiologist did you have an ekg done?  This sounds more like tachycardia then just plain stress but if your fast rate has not be captured by the cardiologist to see they will simply look at the general function of the heart and deem you fine.   If this is new for you then I would go back to the doctor and see if you can get an event monitor to capture this fast beat.  I might also go to see your GP and get your thyroid checked if you haven't already had that done.  Sometimes having a baby can cause a woman's hormones to go out of balance and the thing about the hormones is they can be out of balance for a while before we actually feel the symptoms of them being out of balance.  What I will say is you will mostly likely not die from what is going on.  I lived for 40 years with episodes of tachycardia with my heart beating at around 230.  It was hard to breath and I felt light headed but overall your heart is a very strong muscle and can handle a lot so keep on top of this but try not to stress too much.  If you are having trouble getting doctors to take you seriously then go see someone else.  Take care and keep us posted on how you are doing.
by Red_Star, Jan 10, 2012
"How to Fix Heart Palpitations or Irregular Heart Beat...

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The reason for the heart palpitations, skips or irregular heart beats that you are experiencing may be due to a magnesium/calcium deficiency. The answer is all-natural, completely safe and inexpensive. This product is totally unlike the pharmaceutical "solutions" that conventional doctors may prescribe (you know, those pharmaceuticals with the awful side affects like heart attack, strokes and death). You may see a difference in just a few days at the very most. It is incredible, but when you supply your body with the minerals that it is lacking, the body can recover with lightening speed and symptoms will disappear like magic!

But, are you magnesium/calcium deficient? It has been found that 4 out of 5 people in the US (or 80%) are deficient in magnesium. If you are experiencing 2 or 3 of the following symptoms, you probably are one of them.

- heart palpitations, heart arrythmias
- chest tightness
- urinary spasms
- constipation
- menstrual cramps, premenstrual irritability
- difficulty swallowing, a feeling of a lump in the throat
- insomnia
- light sensitivity, loud noise sensitivity
- high blood pressure
- numbness, tingling, zips, zaps and other vibratory sensations
- being uptight or prone to temper
- muscle twitches, soreness, cramps, spasms, tension, tightness
- back aches, neck pain
- headaches, migraines
- jaw joint problems
- needing to sigh a lot, unable to take a deep breath
- hiccups
- leg spasms, charlie horses, restless leg syndrome
- anxiety, panic attacks
- hyperactivity
- angina"

- Excerpt from Best Magnesium Citrate
by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
Sometimes I get them about 5 or 6 times a day. The ones that are thumping and thudding and actually make me lightheaded are the ones that bother me and bring me to panic mode. Usually if I just breathe through it and relax, the feeling will pass in a few minutes and I return somewhat normal but still worried another one will come. I had read that some people's hearts skip thousands of times a day we just don't feel it! How on earth is that safe?? Our conduction system is set up to keep our heart beating healthy so obviously there's a problem when it skips a beat or beats prematurely. I am thankful I don't feel every other one or I think I'd go into cardiac arrest panicking about it. I still haven't found the trigger for my anxiety, other than the palpitations. I love spending time with my son and raising him.. yes he's a little boy but he rarely stresses me out to the point where I would have panic attacks. They seriously came out of the blue. Your response made me smile and laugh and go run over to Cameron, pick him up, give him and hug and a kiss and tell him that mommy is gonna be ok! Talking with people like you to reassure me that nothing is actually the matter lifts that darkness off and brings out the light! I am taking Prozac right now which is helping me sleep better but I'm more tired during the day. I returned back to school from the break yesterday and I wasn't quite as anxious, just tired. I am going to try it for a week or two more and see how it's really working (it's only been a week). I was so sure it was my heart that I refused any and all medication until my last visit and talking to my older sister who also has anxiety/depression. I am also going to try and find another Doctor. The one I'm seeing now is just too excited to prescribe me medicines without proper testing, not to mention the office is slow and rude. I wait for an hour to be seen for 5 minutes! Anyways  it's SO extremely helpful to be able to talk and relate to others on here with meaningful information. I am still going to see the other cardiologist, who already seems like he knows what he is doing. And I will keep you updated! Thanks and God Bless!
by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
Michelle, sometimes I can feel it stop then start suddenly. The first time I ever felt it skip, it did just that. I was laying in bed cuddling my fiance, I was thinking of our son being asleep early and how nice it was to be in bed early for once and all of a sudden I felt it. I freaked out! I got lightheaded and dizzy and just cried. My fiance didn't help much but to tell me I was ok and nothing was wrong. I didn't sleep ALL night and saw my Doctor the next day. I saw a cardiologist about 3 months ago and wore a 24-hour heart monitor. There were pvc's recorded where my heart beat prematurely and my heart rate was at it's lowest at 30bpm and highest at 130bpm. I never experienced any of that while I was wearing it so it must have been while I was asleep. I'd like to get a 72-hour one with my next cardiologist and do a stress test. I've had multiple normal EKG's and even made my sister rush me to the ER twice while in a panic attack for them to tell me nothing was wrong I just have anxiety and am a little dehydrated. I had all the tests done and everything was normal including my thyroid. My potassium level was a little low but I take a multivitamin once a day. With all of my anxiety I am also going through some weighloss due to loss of appetite and I am already petite to begin with. I'm down to 104, normally 110-112. I force myself to eat at least twice a day and sometimes I feel so sick as to not even able to drink water in large amounts. Every panic attack I've experience has been mild and frightening, but the one I experienced this morning was just out of the ordinary and severely diisturbing. I was just lying there trying to go back to sleep when I felt what I thought was a skipped beat and then I just panicked more than usual and my heart actually raced, normally it will just pound. I'm hoping that this new cardiologist will take me seriously and be able to describe in detail what's going on, if it's dangerous, if I need medication, what I can do to prevent it, and if it can cause problems later on down the road. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and trying to stay stress-free in the meantime. Thanks for everything, it really just helps to talk.
by michellepetkus, Jan 10, 2012
I was not aware this was more of a pvc problem.  Unfortunately there isn't much they do for pvcs unless you have something like 20,000 in a day.  I had a bout of them in October ranging from 10,000 to 15,000 a day for about a week.  They made me really sick, so sick I wound up fasting for a couple of days simply because I had trouble eating and it actually kind of cleared the problem up a bit so I might suggest evaluating your stomach.  Try some antacids after you eat to see if it helps though it doesn't sound like you have too many.  I am down to maybe 10 to 100 a day.  I also had svt that was triggered by pvcs.  Your mention of your heart racing is what caught my attention.  It is likely your fast heart beat is simply stress but as I said pvcs can trigger tachycardia that is more structural in nature.  But if you know that this fast beat was captured on one of your ER visits then it is likely you just have the pvcs.  If you haven't had a stress echo I think it is a good idea to get one just to make sure your heart is structurally fine but odds are it will be.  You can also try the magnesium as Red Star suggested.  Some people have noticed a lot of improvement by adding the supplement to their diet.  And final try to find some peace about the whole situation.  The stress you are feeling is going to make them worse.  PVCs feed off of stress.  I know easier said than done sometimes but the more you focus on your heart the more you are going to hyper evaluate everything it is doing which will make your symptoms seem much worse.  The next time you feel something and notice yourself start to panic, sto, take some deep breaths and release the fear trusting you will be OK because you will.   And just take some time to check around the forum.  As you have already seen you are not alone and maybe that in and of itself will help you come to terms with your situation.  Take care we all know what you are going through.
by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
I don't think I have that many in a day, I only am able to feel a few. Which trigger my panic attacks. I've had 3 attacks just today so I know something is going on. I made an appt with a cardiologist for Thursday to see if I can get some answers. As for today and the past week they have been making me sick. I haven't eaten since yesterday afternoon and I don't even feel well enough for water. I feel extremely dehydrated. I've had only a few sips of water today but used the restroom like ten times. Everytime I stand up I get dizzy and now I feel like I have heartburn but I've only been drinking sips of water. I don't know if I should go to the er for dehydration or just try and let this pass. I haven't really had an appetite at all the past few months actually. Is there anything you have to contribute to that problem as well?
by michellepetkus, Jan 10, 2012
Dehydrating yourself is not a good idea.  Even if you can't eat you really should drink as much water as you can.  That along with not eating is likely why you feel dizzy.  It does sound as though there is some stomach component to this all.  You could have some sort of underlying virus or stomach bacteria.  When the stomach is upset the vagus nerve gets stimulated and it gives me a stomach ache.  Also, I know when I had the pvcs really bad some sort of chemical was being produced that also caused me to use the rest room often.  I am not sure what it was but it passed once the bad bout of pvcs past.  It is possible it is stress hormones as I was pretty stressed about the situation.  I had just been through an ablation to correct my svt which was stressful enough and then to have the pvcs go crazy on me it was a very emotional time for me so it is possible you have built up some stress hormones in your system that are going wild in your body but I would tell this to the cardiologist.  And I would push for a stress echo.  I still think your heart is likely healthy structurally but I think having that peace of mind may help you stress less.  But please drink some water.  Our bodies can go without food but they can't go without water.  Good luck at the doctors.
by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
I can eat lightly, like toast and crackers and bland chips. I've been sipping water as much as I can and I have started to feel better. Since I haven't had an appetite since all of this began do you really think it could be something esophageal? I will talk to my doctor about this when I go because it definitely seems reasonable. Do you know of any tests they will do to rule that out? I definitely do have a lot of stress playing a role in my anxiety and I am one of those people who let it all build up. I try not to let things bother me that really, deep down do. It's emotional for me as well with my 18 month old, school, stress of not being able to have a job, boyfriend and him sticking his nose up to my problems. I am a pretty emotional person and cry way too easily, but lately I haven't been able to cry. I will get upset about something and just get angry and freak out instead. Which isn't normal. I'm for sure going to ask for a longer holter, ultrasound, and the stress test. I don't have any family history of heart disease or anything. I have one grandparent still alive and she is healthy as a horse. My other three died of old age. I lost an uncle to leukemia, but that's not specifically heart related. I know for sure once I see the cardiologist and get the underlying diagnosis, even if it is just "nothing", I will be able to have the peace of mind I need. I just don't understand why I would have such horrible severe anxiety at such a young age to where it comes with side effects as bad as heart problems like this. I worry WAY too much and I think I may need to see a therapist as well to deal with all of this. I'm doing my best to stay hydrated, thanks for all of the helpful information. I know it comes from the heart, and it really means so much.