Arrhythmias as a delayed reaction to Alcohol consumption?
I'm wondering if any of you notice that your arrhythmias worsen *after* you have any alcohol. I don't drink often, but I've noticed the last couple times I've had a drink or two I don't get arrhythmia while I'm drinking but after the alcohol has likely left my system. I had a drink last night and feel them today. On Xmas I had a few drinks and was woken up in the middle of the night that night with runs of arrhtyhmia. Is this just a coincidence or do other people feel a delayed reaction to alcohol like this?
Also, I see a lot of posts about PSVT. What is PSVT, exactly? Docs told me I have NSVT - is that the same thing?
Alcohol for me is the number one cause of my problems and is always delayed as you say. Also I get two delayed reactions - firstly a nasty wake up in the early hours of the next day with an extremely fast and sustained heatbeat and secondly during the next day and perhaps several days PVC's.
It takes around 4 days to clear for me but my tolerance level is around 3 pints of lager maximum on any one occasion but not to be repeated until three days minimum. Red wine, spirits etc are much worse as I react even worse to them so i avoid them all together.
I often wonder how many other 'normal' people have this reaction and wonder why this aspect of alcohol is not more widely discussed as people can unwittingly do themselves harm.
I didn't know other people had this until i joined this forum.
Once again it makes no sense to me and this is why. For years I would have a nice strong martini on a Friday and sometimes Saturday night. I would have no problems with my heart even though I had pvc's throughout those years. That choice of drink with Bellevedere Vodka didn't bother my heart. So now, if I even have 1/2 of a not so strong martini I get pvc's the next day. Not during the time I drink it and not even in the middle of the night, but the next day. It doesn't make sense that the same drink with even less alcholol is messing with my heart.
Now wine and beer are another story. I have never been able to drink that without waking up around 2am with a racing heart. But the martini was never a problem.
I wonder if the delay is due to dehydration and electrolytes more than the alcholol. Sho knows. It isn't like I'm consuming a lot. One drink geeez I like my one drink.
I'd rely on Brooke_38 or someone with more experience than I to answer your question, but according to the things I've read:
NSVT = Non-Sustained Ventricular Tachycardia - this is a tachycardia that lasts usually (depending on definition) less than 30 seconds and originates in the ventricles.
PSVT = Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia - this is a tachycardia that begins and ends quickly (paroxysmal), but originates above (supra) the ventricles. Being paroxysmal does not necessarily mean brief in duration, just that the onset and end are both immediate. An episode of PSVT may lasts seconds or days.
My fast beats were PAT
Paraxysmal Atrial Tachydardia. I hate those but thank goodness they only happen a few times a year. My heart skips, then pause, then off it runs. Usually around 220 with pvc's thrown in to help liven the party! I actually called the paramedics when this happenned for the first time (about 16 years ago) and that is how I know exactly what it is. Regardless, I hate it and it sets me back days when it happens because it is totally out of the blue.
PAT would seem to be defined the same as PSVT. A search of Wikipedia for PAT and you get redirected to SVT. It would seem to make sense, too. How long would your PAT's last, Frenchie? Seconds, minutes or longer?
The longest was enough for me to call 911 and go to the ER. That was probably about an hour. That is how I got diagnosed. I was told it was not life threatening, the atenolol kicked in and calmed it down and they sent me home.
The others have lasted anywhere from 30 seconds to about 3 or 4 minutes.
Hey, what did the doctors say about the rythyms you transmitted over the weekend?
Thanks everyone. Yes, I think it strange that these come on long after the alcohol has left my system. The way doctors talk about it, it sounds like having alcohol in my system is what would egg them on?? But, Frenchie, what you say makes sense - dehydration and elecrolyte imbalance after the fact. Kind of like a heart hangover? You feel fine while you drink, but the next day, ugh. Same as you, though, I don't drink a lot. Just one drink every so often. It's relaxing at the time to unwind with a cocktail, but given what I have to deal with the next day, maybe I'll give it up entirely.
Thanks for the clarifcation between NSVT and PSVT. I though maybe PSVT was another kind of arrhythmia that originated in the ventricles. Confusing how SVT and PSVT, and PVCs are all called 'ventricular' but don't originate in the ventricles...??
I've always wondered this but if it is true, then my A-fib only responds selectively. In 8 years up until my ablation..and I still get A-fib...it only went out of rhythm 6 times. During that tinme I had some pretty heavy drinking days and partying, etc, etc and never did it go out of rhythm directly while drinking. In fact most instances were middle of the day, not doing much type things. Maybe a day after drinking but you'd think if this happened once, it would happen most times.
No one I've asked has had this problem before, but I've had it ever since a had a non-alcohol induced panic attack early this year. I only have a drink occasionally- about once a month or even less. The only thing I've been able to drink without my heart going all crazy for hours afterwards is one beer. Girly wine even does it.
I've always had rarely occurring (and seemingly random) tachycardia that lasts only a few seconds, but nothing like this where it keeps me up all night and makes me feel as if I'm going to have another panic attack.
Since I first noticed it I've only had non-beer alcohol three times, but I'm thinking it's not worth it. It's really bad. I just hate the thought of missing out on wine and bubble baths, the occasional night out with friends, or champagne at my wedding.
I'm really glad to know that I'm not the only one who has this problem, I did think I might have something really wrong with me that I couldn't have alcohol. I guess I can't, but it's good to know it's not some sort of sickness.
NERVOUSLADY and others: I'm writing this response, years after you posted, in the hopes that I can either reach you personally or get what I have to say to others who may have stumbled on this discussion thread via Google.
Note that I've never had a heart attack in my life, and my cardiovascular system is completely clean after 50 years. However, I'm a heart arrhythmia patient who recently got an ICD (implanted Cardioverter-Defibrillator) surgically 'installed' a few months back. I suffer from. It's call Ventricular Tachycardia and is about one of the worse things your heart can start doing to you, short of full-out fibrillating. VTACH (VT) is life-threatening in that it often precedes Ventricular Fibrillation which is very lethal if it isn't stopped immediately. It's a very unpleasant thought, but you need to know that once you get into VFIB, you will probably be beyond resuscitation after 60 seconds and will die if you don't have and ICD - or if there is no AED (automatic emergency defibrillator) nearby with somebody knowledgeable on how to operate it. Hundreds of thousands of otherwise healthy people here in the U.S. drop dead, every year, with "sudden cardiac arrest" and it's because of these lethal arrhythmias.
My story is that I was diagnosed with "idiopathic VT". That simply means the doctors can't find a structural defect in the heart muscle that's causing it. I take beta blockers and the ICD will apply a shock to my heart if it detects VT that lasts beyond a set time interval. But, I've been a heavy drinker (> 25 drinks per week) for over 10 years. I've gone on the wagon since my last VT attack where my ICD shocked me 3 times in 5 minutes. I've discussed alcohol use with my cardiologist and he's affirmed that alcohol is a poison to the heart and that I should eliminate it completely since we both now agree that there is a definite correlation between my morning VT attacks and alcohol consumption the night previous. Knowing how intensely unpleasant it is to get shocked from an ICD, I can honestly tell you that I will never drink another drop of alcohol in my life if it means the ICD shocks will stop. Studies that say 2 drinks a night are good for the heart are complete ********.
Anybody with multiple PVCs in a row, or anybody experiencing unexplainable "grey outs" or "black outs" in vision and dizzyness should IMMEDIATELY see a competent doctor and ask for heart stress test with an ECG. I highly recommend that it also be done only where the doctor has a defibrillator is close at hand. In the meantime, you need to eliminate alcohol from you diet and cease any recreational drug use.
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