Im 29yo male, 5'11, 160..In overall good health I am HIV-poz, but taking meds for it and am doing very well...But for several years I have had palpitations, I have had stress tests, echos, ekgs, and also wore 48-hour monitors and all claimed that my palps were benign...Lately, when I lay on my stomach to take a nap, I can't seem to drift off because I feel my heart beating, not racing, just beating a bit too fast for laying down...But when I go to bed, I usually don't notice it (I sleep on my back at night) Could this be a heart issue, or just laying on my stomach causing my heart to beat faster? What could cause this? Like I said, I had numerous tests and none were deemed to be serious...My usual heart rate is anywhere from 78-88. Thanks for any input..
Southkyguy, definitely sorry to hear about the HIV diagnosis but glad you are doing ok with it.
I'm not a doctor or an expert, just someone with a long history of heart arrythmias (10 years now) and I have done tons of reading and other amature research over the years. If you have no other symptoms at all (such as skipped beats or really fast tachycardia) I really wouldn't worry about it much. Keep in mind that when you're laying on your stomach you are constricting your heart by forcing your stomach up into the bottom of it. If you restrict the ventricles just a little your heart is naturally going to beat faster to compensate for lower volume. That would be perfectly normal. Also, your heart rate is affected by your nervous system in at least two different ways. Sympathetic Nervous System increases heart rate while the Parasympathetic Nervous system decreases heart rate. The Parasympathetic Nervous system affects the heart through the Vagus Nerve. This is a very long nerve that runs through much of your digestive system (among many other places). It's possible that putting pressure on the stomach and intestines could affect the Vagus Nerve and cause changes in heart rate.
Either way it would be nothing to worry about and completely normal.
This is, of course, assuming there is no skipping or irregularity in your heartbeat which could mean something else. If the beats are perfectly normal, just a hair faster than usual then I wouldn't worry about it at all.
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