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Can Nasonex (steroid nasal spray) cause heart problems?
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Can Nasonex (steroid nasal spray) cause heart problems?

I've  had such a tough time with sinus headaches, allergies (watery eyes, plugged ears and tinnitus) and fatigue that I finally went to an ear-nost-throat doctor last week. He put me on Nasonex, a steroid nasal spray, to reduce the inflammation. I also hear my heartbeat in my ear at times, and he's hoping that a month on Nasonex will stop that. If not, he'll do a CT scan and other work to see what's going on.

Here's my question:  Are any of you using something like Nasonex or Flonase?  I do have a headache behind my eyes and feel tired a lot, but I had that before too.  Common side effects of Nasonex are fatigue, headaches, a lowered immune system (not good) and others too.  A few people I know who have used this for a year or more mentioned that they got palpitations, and one friend said his PVCs increased. But one can't be sure whether the PVCs increased because of the Nasonex. I already have quite a few PVCs a day and don't need more.

I'm hoping some of you have tried Nasonex (or Flonase, which is similar).   I'm not sure if I want to stay on it longterm. Since I  have a chronic, lowgrade sinus infection in one sinus above my left eye (antibiotics don't work for it), and since I have allergies now too, I need something.  My doctor says that Allegra, Claritin, Zyrtec, Sudafed, and most antihistamines can cause heart arrhythmias, so the only other thing I have is saline nasal spray, and that doesn't do it?

I've tried to remove allergens from my home, but it's difficult.  I also have an air purifier.  No luck so far.

Hoping someone has used Nasonex (or Flonase) and can give me some feedback here!

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11 Comments Post a Comment
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503607_tn?1275675179
My heart is extremely sensitive to anything.  I use Nasonex without any problems.  It's the only thing I can use without worrying about it.  That being said, Everyone is different and what is good for me may bother you.  
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503607_tn?1275675179
I also do not use it everyday, I don't need too, I use it occasionally.  
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Avatar_f_tn
Nasalcrom is an OTC nasal spray that used to be a prescription item.  It contains cromolyn sodium, a compound that stabilizes mast cells, which are prone to rupture in an allergic response, releasing irritating substances which cause a bunch of allergy symptoms.  It doesn't work immediately, but becomes effective gradually, as you can read here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cromoglicic_acid

The stuff is also available as an oral inhaler for asthma and as eye drops for itchy eyes (these are still prescription items, but generic now, I think).  I've used them all for years, since I have lots of allergies and live in an area with no winter, so plants go nuts all year round.

Cromolyn sodium is an interesting drug in that it is almost without known side effects--very unusual in the drug business.

It doesn't work for everyone, but for those for whom it is effective, it's awfully nice stuff.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks so much for your answers!   Between the sore, teary eyes and headache between and above the eyes,  the ear thing, the fatigue, and the pounding pulse (not fast, just pounding), it's difficult to keep up with my three-year-old grandson and get things ready for a full house on Christmas. Also had a day of vertigo a week ago.

I feel a little groggy/lightheaded sometimes since starting the Nasonex, but will continue taking it anyway. Kind of a mess right now.  LOL.  Just hoping the Nasonex helps with the pounding heartbeat in my ear and helps resolve some of the other issues too.  Again, thanks for your input. I feel better about taking the Nasonex.

Yarrow, I did read the link about Nasalcrom. I think I used that once, years ago.  I need a steroid spray now, though, to take down the inflammation and swelling. But I'll keep Nasalcrom in mind too.  MIght come in handy for the irritated, itchy teary eyes I often get in the spring.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am having pretty much the same problem.  I have had such severe headaches these past few months, not to mention watery right eye, cracking in my ears and can only sleep on one side because ear popping is so bad on the other side,I finally made an appointment with the ear, nose & throat doctor, who has placed me on Nasonex.  I took my first spray today and it actually helped.  It seems to be waring off now though.  Guess time will tell.    
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Avatar_n_tn
It's been awhile since we compared notes.  How are you doing now?  I just got over some kind of virus and am now having ear, cheek, jaw and between-the-eyes pain again.  If I go to a doctor, I'll probably be given an antibiotic, which is dangerous since so many antibiotics close my throat.  I've had some really close calls when I almost didn't make it to the ER in time, so antibiotics are quite risky for me.  I've tried Tylenol and saline nasal spray...helps only a little.  I don't want to use Nasonex when I have what could be a bad sinus infection, soI don't really know what to do.  I'm hoping you're doing better.

By the way, my irregular heartbeat went away after I stopped taking drugs like Nexium for daily heartburn.  I use generic Maalox tablets now for heratburn and eat carefully, because it's so wonderful not to have the heart arrhythmia anymore.  I do still get heart pounding, though. It's always something, I guess.  How are you?
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612551_tn?1247839157
I'm a generic guy and used for the last year a nasal spray Fluticasone Propionate - I think it is a generic version of one of those expensive patented sprays.  Even generic it cost over $20 for a month's supply.

I have used it twice a day for many days in a row, then not at all, then back again. I suffer from chronic congestion at night, when lying down to sleep.  This stuff is no where as affective as Afrin or other over-the-counter decongestant sprays, but they can't be used more than a few nights in a row.  So I use them for way over the limit, but switch back to the prescription spray before anything bad happens... works so far.

I have permanent atrial fibrillation, so my heart beat is irregular and prone to be too fast (I take beta and calcium channel blockers).  

I have never associated any heart behavior problems on the Fluticasone.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, Jerry... the nasal spray you're using (fluticasone propionate) is the generic form of Flonase. My ear doctor gave me a prescription to try when my Nasonex runs out (which should be soon).  It seems that since I've been on the Nasonex, (beginning of spring allergies here), my heart pounding is worse. I researched fluticasone and found that it can also increase heart pounding or palpitations in some people. So I'm not sure what to do at this point. Have you experienced any more heartbeat issues since being on the fluticasone for awhile? I have mild mitral valve problems, but I think that usually causes an arrhythmia, not just heart pounding all the time.
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Avatar_f_tn
I believe Flonase is causing my irregular heartbeats. I stopped it for 2 days and my heartbeats are regular again.
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1569985_tn?1328251082
I believe my irregular heart issues originally may have been caused by some of the nasal decongestents and allergy medications.  I no longer take them, but now use a salt water nasal spray and nose strips to breathe at night.
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612551_tn?1247839157
I see I didn't answer your question to my last May.  If  you're still tracking, I still can not associate any heart rhythm problems from nose decongestant sprays. Neither those over-the-counter or prescription.

This may be because I now suffer from permanent atrial fibrillation.  I also had mitral valve problems and underwent surgery to repair it in 2007.  This was before I tried the prescription nose decongestant.
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