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Bothersome, continuous skipped heart beats?
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Bothersome, continuous skipped heart beats?

OK let me start with the basic information about myself:
I am 33 years old, woman, weigh about 185 and I'm 5f 6i. I have smoked cigarettes for about 12 years and I used to smoke weed too but I quit doing that about 4 years ago. I have anxiety issues about my heart and I take 0.5mg Xanax once in the morning and once at night. I go to school full time from 9a-1p to be a medical assistant and when I get home I usually just hang out on the couch or in bed and watch tv, nap, or on my computer. I rarely exercise, I might go for a SHORT walk once in awhile. I also do not eat the best diet. My blood pressure is always in the normal range (systolic between 110-120 and diastolic between 70-84).
The first time I remember this happening was back in about 2005-2006. I was sitting playing a video game and I felt my heart skip a beat. It felt like my heart stopped for a brief second and made a harp thump and started again. Over the years these "skipped beats" have seemed to get progressively worse to the point where I'm feeling them pretty much every day now. They seem to happen after I get out of school in the afternoon and towards the evening hours. They seem to happen whenever I am fatigued, whenever I over exert myself, after I eat, and after a hot shower in the evening. When I experience these skipped beats they usually last for awhile (a few hours) and happen about 5-6 times every 30 minutes or so. Lately I have also been feeling short of breath also, even just walking from one end of my house to the other or walking from my car in to my school.
I have been to MANY doctors, family doctors and emergency rooms. I have had an unknown number of EKG's, 2D echocardiograms, 2 24 hour holter monitors, and blood work done all which seem to come back normal. It is very frustrating because whenever they hook me up to an EKG machine none of these "skipped beats" are ever recorded on the EKG. I guess because none of these events have ever been recorded the doctors either think I'm imagining this or its just anxiety which is an unacceptable diagnosis to me! I am constantly aware of my heart beat and the skipped beats is the reason for my anxiety, not the other way around.
Just recently (about a month ago) I had another 24 hour holter monitor which actually did record a couple skipped beats and my heart rate going up to 137 BPM. My primary physician then referred me a cardiologist who talked to me for all of 5 minutes, looked at the report from the 24 holter monitor and said he didn't see anything abnormal.
I am getting very frustrated and discouraged because I want so bad for these palpitations to STOP and it seems like none of these doctors are taking me seriously.
Please tell me what I should do or what you think these skipped beats can be caused from?! I want to get back in shape badly (join a gym, etc.) but I am literally afraid to do any type of exercise because I'm scared these palpitations will get worse or that exercising will just make my heart give out all together. PLEASE HELP!!
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1807132_tn?1318747197
It is not that there isn't something going on but it is likely what is going on isn't anything to be concerned about.  I can't say for sure but it sounds like you have some pacs or pvcs.  They are likely isolated and few enough in number that the cardiologist deems them normal.  Supposedly everyone gets them but most people don't feel them.  They are only dangerous in high numbers or if they come together for extended periods of time causing you to pass out.  Beyond that we just have to learn to accept them and try to find and eliminate the triggers.  Stress, certain foods, problems with the stomach, and electrolyte imbalances are considered some of the biggest triggers.  In any event, you are free to exercise.  If you find that they become extreme when you exercise then revisit the cardiologist.  But you may want to find a different one.  It is a shame he didn't take the time to explain what was going on.    I think you deserve a doctor who will take the time to explain things to you so you know what is going on.  But the fact that you have had numerous tests that show your heart is structurally healthy means these skipping beats aren't anything to worry too much over.  The worry will actually likely make them worse.  Check around this forum for posts on pacs and pvcs and you will see you are in good company.  If you have any more questions just let us know.  Take care,
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2036775_tn?1393946728
Sounds like PVC's to me too... They feel like a huge thump in your chest...Your heart skips a beat, the blood goes to your legs and with the next contraction of your heart all the blood slams back into your heart.  Sounds dangerous, and is aggrevating but they generally aren't dangerous..

They might be worse after a meal or after eating certain foods.  I would try to eliminate caffiene, and eat a low salt, low fat diet and see it that helps.  

I think you think a new doc.  The one you went to didn't take you seriously.  I hope you can find someone to listen...

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996946_tn?1411467927
You should be ok to exercise....it might cut down on your anxiety.  I totally agree that SOMEONE needs to listen to you, maybe a NEW Dr. It would be good if you could wear a 7-day Holter monitor.  Also a pulse-ox would be helpful to check the rhythm of your heartbeat and the BPM.  It will also show your oxygen level.  You can get one at the pharmacy or online for $70-80.  Good Luck....you are way too young to have to deal with this issue, but since you are having to deal with it, you might as well get to the bottom of it.  And please, please try to quit smoking...Also, even a glass of wine or mixed drink or a single beer can be a trigger.  
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Avatar_f_tn
I discovered (by accident) that my own skipped beats and tachycardia were caused by food allergies. I was monitoring my pulse one day, taking frequent measurements. Pulse was steady in the 60s for hours. Then I had a snack and pulse immediately went up to the 80s, with some skipped beats. I thought maybe this is just normal after eating, so I started experimenting, testing one food at a time.

I discovered that most foods had no effect on pulse, but some did. I eventually had a list of eight or 10 foods that caused racing pulse and skipped beats. When I eliminated them, my heart rate normalized. Coincidentally (or not), the exhaustion and chronic hives(!) I had experienced for years were also relieved.

I'm so sorry you have not gotten the help you need from doctors. But the good news is you have considerable power to help yourself. I don't know if food allergies are causing your skipped beats, but I do know that with careful monitoring you can discover what is.

You'll need to keep a written record of your pulse throughout the day, every half hour if you can manage it, noting where you are and what you're doing . And you'll need to record everything you eat and the time. And of course, record the time of each "thump". Keep your diary for several weeks, at least. Some things you'll notice right away, but other patterns will only emerge over time.

I am sure that you can get considerable relief by learning what your own triggers are (foods/activities/places,etc.) and then avoiding them.

Good luck!
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Avatar_f_tn
Responding to my own post here...

Just realized there's something easy and safe you can try right now--magnesium. Magnesium is essential for normal heart function, and because it's found in vegetables and whole grains, lots of people don't get enough. Easy thing to try.
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Avatar_f_tn
This is me.. To a T !! It *****. I am currently leaning off the side of my bed feeling like I'm having a heart attack searching these problems. I google 'heart palpitations' like once a week and look for answers. I am currently between seeing doctors, cardiologists and electrophysiologist's at South Lake hospital in Newmarket, Ontario. This is by far the best 'heart' hospital in the country. If I were to write a short story about my problem it would be 99% of exactly what you wrote about yourself. Except my palpitations are up to 15-20 per minute. Literally every 3rd to 5th beat skips. I FEEL ALL OF THEM. It feels like I'm constantly having a heart attack and I'm a ticking time bomb for death. I've seen many doctors, holter monitors ekg's and they all say "I'm fine".. But I'm in the final stage of this problem. I have another monitor set up in a week and I go back to see the electrocardiologist in 2 weeks. It used to happen once in a while. I'd get a bunch one day then they'd be gone for several months. But in June of this year the just started one day and they haven't stopped for a second. It's now December and I'm losing my mind. I am 26 years old, male, I first started having them like 6 years ago very rarely.. But from what I understand its not the 'heart' itself. It's an electrical / nerve problem. But like I said I have a few appointments coming up. I will re-post when I get my results. But for now, try not to stress.. Cause that will only make it worse. Good luck I will be in touch again
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110220_tn?1309310461
I am 56 years old and have had PVC, skipped beats since I was in my mid 20's.   I have worn a monitor a couple of times and the skipped beats were recorded and they were nothing.  I do understand the fear that is associated with them, it can be scary.  I do have anxiety attacks from time to time and my diet isn't always great, and I find that when I neglect my diet, like not drinking enough water, or am feeling anxiety, my palpitations are felt strongly.  I am living proof that they are harmless, it has been over 30 years and I don't take anything for them, no beta blockers.  I can go months and even years without having any and then I will have them for a month on and off.  Also, check your caffenine intake, that can trigger them.  Your nerves can definitely play a role.   Matter of fact, I had a few PVC lately and during my physical today, my doctor conducted a EKG and all was normal, and I haven't  had a PVC since.   I'm not saying its mental, but if we experience anxiety, it is a symptom.  Take deep breaths and make sure your eating right, drinking enough water, eat your bananas and think positive.  Your doctor says your heart is fine, beleive that and stop worrying so much.  Best wishes.
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Avatar_f_tn
What foods caused your heart skipped beats/allergies?  I get them a few minutes after finished eating, would it happen that soon after eating? Thanks
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm not sure my list would be of any value to you. It's not that particular foods caused skipped beats. Allergies cause them (at least in my case), and if you are allergic to foods it's not likely to be the same ones I'm allergic to.

To find out yours, start by taking your pulse as soon as you wake up, before sitting up in bed, for a baseline. Then take it throughout the day, but especially right before eating, so you can compare it to your pulse 15/30/60 minutes after the meal. If the heart rate goes up by 10 beats or more, or if you have skpped beats, you've found an allergy.

I discovered that allergic reactions make me very tired for the rest of the day and often the next day. So finding and eliminating those allergies has greatly increased my energy.

There's a book The Pulse Test by the doctor who discovered this method of  testing for food allergies. It's out of print, but if you look you can find it used.
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Avatar_m_tn
very interesting reading...... seems we all share the same condition. I feel its the worrying that affects us the most...... I am convinced that caffeine has a connection with this.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have the same problem, its right after I eat a meal, snack, whatever, Its starting to alarm me. I do drink coffee every morning and have an occasional soda so I would rule caffeine out. I do eat a lot of high fat foods though.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have the same problem, its right after I eat a meal, snack, whatever, Its starting to alarm me. I do drink coffee every morning and have an occasional soda so I would rule caffeine out. I do eat a lot of high fat foods though.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have the same problem, its right after I eat a meal, snack, whatever, Its starting to alarm me. I do drink coffee every morning and have an occasional soda so I would rule caffeine out. I do eat a lot of high fat foods though.
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212161_tn?1410016711
Hey I feel your pain my flutters are 3-4 in a row and many many of them, sad they can't fix them, hang in there they do get better I think
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