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Enlarged heart and PVCs
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Enlarged heart and PVCs

Here is my story.

4 years ago now I was driving home, not a care in the world and happy as can be when I had I believe to be, my first palp. My face flushed and my entire body went cold. My first thought: My heart is giving out.
I pulled over and was delirious with fear. I was rushed later to the ER. They did EKGs and monitored me for hours. The doctor informed me that there was a sign of oxygen lacking in my blood and he wanted to test for lung clot. The test came back negative.

After all the stress and fear, I start having anxiety. This goes on for a year while still have palps, mostly once or twice a day.a close friend offers to give me an Echo. He says everything looks fine, but I have an 'athletes heart'. I decide to leave it up to that, even though I HAVE NOT BEEN VERY ACTIVE. I'm talking maybe my heart rate gets built up once or twice a week for 30min or less.

Another year goes by and things get worse. My palps are stronger and more frequent. I am woken at night because of how bad ans contantly my heart palps. I start seeing a doctor seriously. Thyroid test is fine, no diabetes, EKG fine, Holter monitor (24hr) only registers a few little "PCVs". My doctor puts me on .25 Metropolol (beta blockers) and .25 Xanax.

Two months later and it seems the betas might be helping. My palps aren't very strong and I start to relax. I tell my doctor I might be better.

A week later (now) I start getting them again, but they feel different. They are now CONSTANT. I can't lay down without them flaring non-stop. Some feel like palps, most feel like a gurgling, spasming beat. They wake me from deep sleep. I get a vibrating sensation in my left chest and pain. I feel the need to cough, but there is no mucus or blood. This is the scariest it's ever been. Even when I take xanax to remove the anxiety from the equation (and trust me, that stuff works really well for me), it keeps happening. Even when I'm a drooling zombie who doesn't care because of the xanax, they still happen. I know this can NOT be linked to anxiety because they happen at all times, anxiety or not.

The facts: I'm 22. I am 5'11. 190lbs. Breast size C. Fairly innactive, but goes for walks.
No other health issues.
What I notice causes palps to worsen: Eating a big meal, or something with a lot of bread (pizza). Caffiene. Sugar. Anxiety. Laying down, sitting. Excersize. Taking deep breaths. Gas. Changes in breathing patterns of any kind.
Around and during my period, full moons.

My questions: What should I do? What could this be? Should I get another Echo? Other tests? I'm at the end of my rope...please help me.....
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1182699_tn?1297578384
Hi there! I have had the same symptoms you are describing since I was 22. I am now 38. The same things seem to cause mine too. I have had all the tests and am convinced I am dying most of the time, but I'm still kicking...miserably though. I too feel this causes me to have anxiety and the doctors want to say the anxiety causes the heart issues..I don't buy it. Many people benefit from counseling if you can find a good one. You mentioned your doctor..is this a cardio? If you don't have one, I would definitely ask my PCP for a referral for a cardio just to get a baseline and for monitoring purposes. I get the flushed feeling like I'm going to pass out with mine as well...I think it has something to do with the BP dropping for a moment, but not sure on that. Although I do not believe that anxiety causes mine, I do believe my anxiety makes them worse. This could be happening in your case as well. Try to reduce your stress (believe me, I know, easier said than done) and hang in there. You will have days that you barely notice them if you notice them at all. I am 5'2", 100 lbs. and I also have asthma. I do take atenolol at night and xanax as needed. Keep us posted on how you're feeling.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for responding. It is a form of counseling for me to hear from others like yourself.

I have also had this flushed feeling, but not frequently enough for me to take it into account. When I do, it's if I'm hungry, so blood pressure could play a part.

I do not have health care so going to a heart doctor is horribly expensive right now, but I'm working on it. I do think I'm going to get a proper echo soon, so I'll post the results.

Thanks again for your response.
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1137980_tn?1281289046
Okay i'll weigh in on this cause i have been there done that too.....you may want to read the post from "goingcrazy" because they just posted something pretty similar and i tried to answer it the same as i would have you.  A couple of things tho...the coughing is completely normal and if you can believe it healthy for you...it has absolutely nothing at all to do with mucus or blood...it is the hearts natural way when it detects an irregularity of the heart and the electrical to attempt to re set itself which is what you want it to do...and it really is a good thing that your body is so sensitive that it senses that and attempts to correct itself.  Read the response i wrote to goingcrazy it may be helpful and the Mayo Clinics site if you google out "What causes PVC's" is super easy to read and helps you thru this a little...hope it was helpful...............
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks, Cindy, I never knew that about coughing a PVCs. That was enlightening! Makes a lot of sense for me. I will continue on to read those suggested things.

Also and update on my situation. I tested going a few days since my first post without ANY refined sugars, sodas, teas, coffee, candy and even fruit. I had NO palps and was very relaxed and my usual anxiety triggers didn't bother me and it was great! Then, to further test my theory, I tried a day eating sweets and the palps came back with a VENGENCE.

So, I'm going to test my limits and maybe have one treat early in the day once in a while, but its hard since I have a sweet tooth! So I suggest others try this aswell.

Also, I am going for one more Echo soon to make sure that my palps are benign and that my enlarged heart is not making things dangerous (MVP).

Check back soon.
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1137980_tn?1281289046
Wow that was a great post Dez..................how informative was that one?  I know that my doc set out those guidelines for me too and added a couple of other things to the list but i was never brave enough to test it....oh heck noooooo....with my luck i'd end up back with my heart rate back in the 300's and would end up undoing everything that my ablation accomplished...i am the true theory of Murphys Law and trust me if it can happen it will happen to me....congrats on this tho...its great seeing someone braver then me testing the theory with no residual effects....to me its just too scary and dangerous.......
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Avatar_f_tn
Okay, few days gone by and the theory is still holding pretty true. I did, however, still get PVCs the past two days even without sugar, though they weren't as violent.

I am also noting that my heart rate has a very hard time slowing down at night. It's not hummingbird quick but it his STRONG. What I mean is, at rest my heart beats loudly and powerfully at an elevated rate for at least an hour before it quiets down enough for me to sleep.  Beta's help a little (I only take .25mg at night), but it is still loud in my head!

I also note that lying on my side is uncomfortable (either side). I don't feel pain, but I get palps more if I lay on my side and it just feels weird. Same on my stomach.

Anyway, I believe this might relate to my heart being enlarged. When this happens to athletes, it allows their hearts to pump more blood easier and increases their stamina. For someone with PVCs, however, it can be bad news.

I am calling my doctor after this for my echo appointment. More info to come soon.
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Avatar_f_tn
Another update finally. It has been a difficult week. On Monday I went for an echo. The results have not come in yet, but the man who looked at my heart said he saw my Mitral Valve acting up and could hear a murmur in the beats. This is quite a break through! Mitral Valve Prolapse can yield more complications, however, so I am anxious for my full review.

I'll keep you posted.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am almost 100% sure what you have and this will solve all of your problems.  You most likely have chronic lyme disease with possible co-infections.  Do not get all worried now that I said that.  It is very curable and is not fatal by any means.  Chronic lyme with coinfections can cause panic/anxiety, PVCs, palps, fast/slow heart beat, irregular heart beat, weak/strong pulse and a whole array of REVERSIBLE heart issues (do not freak out they are not dangerous and are all reversible with treatment).  THis will explain the normal heart workups and the fact that no doctor understands or can give you a diagnosis and it is all coming back even with the meds.  With treatment all of your symptoms will subside forever and you will no longer have them.  Go to an LLMD not a regular doctor, and make sure you send your blood tests to IGenix labs in CA (do not use LabCorp or anything else).  Lyme disease is a huge epidemic and most of the medical community (your usual allopathic MD) does not know a thing about it, even though they say they do.  The only trustable sources are integrative LLMDs or LLDO (lyme literate medical doctors or Lyme literate osteopathic medical doctors).  Good luck
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