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Heart Pounding
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Heart Pounding

I've seen a lot of people complain about heart rhythym issues and how they have palpitations or a fast heartrate, but the only thing that I currently have wrong with my heart is that it is beating--hard. It doesn't matter if I am sitting up or laying down, my heart is constantly pounding, as if I just had the **** scared out of me. Accompanied with spiking blood pressure, fatigue (both mentally and physically), not being able to sleep well, weakened muscles...its starting to get the best of me.

I am 28 years old and the only conditions that I am aware of is a fatty liver which makes my triglycerides stay higher than normal; around 550. I've gone to the Cardiologist and have had numerous EKG's done along with a holter monitor and an echocardiogram and they're telling me its not my heart. I went to a Gastroententerologist and an EDG was performed with nothing substantial coming back. I went to a Urologist because my initial problem was a kidney stone, which I passed but continued to have the high blood pressure and lower back pain after the stone was gone. The Urologist told me that there was traces of blood in the urine but after an ultrasound and a CAT scan of the kidneys, they couldn't find anymore stones. I've also recently had issues sleeping as I always wake up tired and fatigued. Even basic activities tire me out faster than usual.

So here's a list of my symptoms that I've noticed besides the pounding heart:

-High Blood Pressure: Interestingly enough, when I am lying down, my blood pressure ranges from 130/80 to 115/60, but when standing up and walking around it can spike to around 170/95 and drop down to 130/80.

-Weak Skin: I hardly ever scar or tear skin, but recently I scratched my legs for a few seconds and the skin came right off; it even healed funny and scarred, which never happens to me. I hardly get bruises let alone being able to rip my own skin.

-Anxiety: I can become anxious very easily where it takes my body a period of time to come down and stabilize. I've never experienced anything like that before.

-Fagitue/Weakness: I'm tired all the time and can't seem to get enough energy to do the things I used to be able to do. I run for 10 minutes and my legs become weak and shaky like I'm about to collapse, but not a year ago I could run for 45 minutes and then continue with other exercises.

-Sleeping: I don't seem to sleep well. I wake up during the night at least 5-6 times a week (sometimes all in one night) and even though I'm tired, I have issues falling asleep at times. My fiance says she hears me snoring sometimes and I have woken myself up to a pounding heartbeat and had to concentrate on my breathing to calm it down. I sometimes wake up with headaches.

-Lower Back: I sometimes get this pain in my lower back, which I assumed was from my kidneys, but those are higher up on the back.

-Left Leg and Groin Area: I sometimes get sharp pains in my left leg if something is pressing into my quad at an odd angle. Sometimes I just get randomly shooting sensations through my leg and my groin. It never happens to my right leg though.

Based on my own research, I've come to three conclusions: I either have sleep apnea (I match most of the symptoms), some adrenal gland issue (Cushings disease matches pretty well), or some other unknown cause that I can't seem to locate. If anyone has ever had anything like this, please let me know. I don't want to do any permanent damage to my heart.

Also noteworthy, it seems that my heart beats harder after I eat or drink something.
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Avatar_n_tn
Sleep apnea or an adrenal issue were the two things I thought of while reading your post. The only other thing I can think of is a possible nutritional deficiency, as I do believe that certain vitamin or mineral deficiencies can cause this problem. You might want to check with a doctor who can test for that sort of thing.

If it helps any, you're not alone! I woke up a few weeks ago with this exact problem. My heart was POUNDING as though someone had poured adrenaline into the left side of my body, but my blood pressure and pulse were not particularly high. The doctor thought it was anxiety, but this problem went on for a solid week or two, and was so bad that I couldn't even lay on my left side because it was so distracting.

I had all the heart tests done while I was having this issue, and none of them turned up anything. The problem eventually went away on its own after a couple weeks, but then I had the opposite issue. I was fatigued, no energy, BP and pulse lower than normal. That also went away, and now my BP and pulse are normal, but I'm having more heart palps than usual.

So what causes this? I have no clue. I'm getting some nutritional testing next week, and also want to talk to my doc about adrenal issues. Whatever it is, it's absolutely maddening.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hey thanks for the reply. I wish my problem only lasted a few weeks; I've been off and on sick since November 2008. I'm only 28 so I hope I'll bounce back and recover but each month makes it harder and harder to deal with whatever is going on. Plus the Atenelol the doc has me on is killing my stomach...heh. My Cardiologist told me not to exercise so I can't even do that anymore for my blood pressure. I'll have to look into the malnutrition angle. Thanks for the advice.
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Avatar_m_tn
----UPDATE---- 4/15/10

So I went to an Endocrinologist and he says my adrenal and thyroid gland are fine. I've also been for a few sleep studies with no signs of sleep apnea. My cardiologist gave me a stress test and from the nominal jump in BP and readings from the EKG, he can't see anything wrong with my heart.

So I am currently taking 50mg of Atenonol(beta blocker), 25mg of HCTZ(thiazide diuretic), and 145mg Tricor (for lowering triglycerides). I also take 1300mg of Fish Oil and 1200mg of Flax Seed Oil. The Atenolol seems to help my heart calm down and not beat so hard or so quickly as sometimes I feel like my body is reacting to some sort of anxiety that I do not feel emotionally.

And still, my symptoms persist. My BP still spikes, but seems to be okay when I'm lying in bed. I've lost about 15 pounds which has seemingly made my pounding heart feel like its pounding even harder. Before, I think I couldn't feel my heart as much because I was fat and things were pushing against my heart but now, since I've lost a decent amount of weight, my heart will sometimes wake me up when I'm trying to go to sleep with the pounding.

Anybody else have any ideas? Maybe there's something wrong with my blood? Perhaps my blood is too thick due to Hypercoagulation and my heart is just forced to pump harder? My general practitioner seems to be tapped out as he says there's no other test that he knows of that he could give me. My cardiologist seems to be running out of ideas as well. My quality of life currently ***** and I know its only going to get worse as I get older. The only thing that helped in the past was numbing the pounding heart by taking 1-2mg of Xanax, which is something I don't ever want to do again.

If anyone has any ideas of what could possibly be wrong, please let me know. I am willing to take any test required to figure out what is wrong with me. Even as I write this email, my eyesight flickers slightly everytime my heart beats because its beating so friggin' hard. Its annoying as hell.
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967168_tn?1343732745
just a thought, have you gotten your test results to look it all over? I've had a couple of things missed that were pretty relevant to a dx I got  last year, most of the time if you send in a written letter they send them to you, but some drs charge a nominal fee

this may not even be - but some of your symptoms remind me of what I've read with autonomic nervous system dysfunction - bp spikes, pounding hb, sleep problems, pain

could be something else entirely unrelated to your heart too to do with nerves? have they checked for that?

could be as simple as anxiety and stress causing the symptoms too; which explains some of your symptoms
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Avatar_m_tn
I haven't looked at my own test results besides the blood tests. I guess I could look over the results but I'm not sure what I'm going to pick out myself.

That's funny you mention the nerves because I think my next visit is going to see a Neurologist, or even quite possibly, a Chriopractor. The two persistent symptoms I've had from this whole experience is the high BP and the back pain. If you Google high BP and back pain, Google gives you something about an aortic aneurysm, which I'm pretty sure I don't have. Maybe there's a crucial nerve pinch that is causing all of this? Aren't nerve pinches like looking for a needle in a haystack though?

My wife thinks I'm crazy but I know there's something wrong with my body and I need to find out what it is or it will drive me to stress. Currently I'm not a stressed person; in fact, I'm pretty calm most of the time. My body feels like its reacting to stress sometimes, but emotionally I'm not stressed at all. I just want to classify my symptoms with something so I can get to the part where I work on making it better.
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Avatar_f_tn
ive suffered from anxiety and was put on propanolol 80mg 1x day,the were really good at settling my heart down sometimes id check if it were still beating cuz i couldnt feel it but did not help with the anxiety as they only stop adrenalin/fast heart rate, these can be used for fast heart rate or high blood pressure
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Avatar_m_tn
Well, just to chronicle the next chapter of my doctor visits, I'm currently going to a Chriopractor. I told him about pinched nerves and he told me that was a load. He's been cracking my back and making me do certain exercises, but I don't see any sort of benefit to this back-cracking. I always assumed that Chriopractors did more than simply twist you around; I thought there was a method to the madness. Perhaps its the doctor...I guess I'll never know.

Anyway, next on the list: Neurologist and then an experimental test using ultrasounds and the arteries; essentially they fire sound waves into the arteries and are able to 3D map your arteries to see if anything is wrong with them. The test costs around $1,500 but at this point, I'm willing to pay whatever I need to so I can fix whatever is ailing me before it causes permanent damage and I figure if there's something weird going on with my heart and blood pressure, the arteries are a good place to start.

Keep your fingers crossed.
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Avatar_m_tn
I had a little of the same thing.  At first I thought I had lyme disease because of all the symptoms.  And, as the same with everyone, after a slew of tests the doctors stopped just short of calling me a hypochondriac.  

Anyways I've found that when I laid off of certain foods the symptoms lessened.  If I don't eat any carbohydrates from wheat, excessive nitrates, or soy I am fine.  I have loads of trouble digesting carbs and a carbohydrate intolerance can cause a ton of odd symptoms.  Once laying off the carbs you can start adding whole wheat carbs, but slowly.  

Also taking vitamin D supplements and Magnesium helped as well.  I also take kelp supplements but do not recommend this because it can throw you into a thyroid storm if you have a very active thyroid.  As well as regulating thyroid function kelp also helps to eliminate gas bubbles.    

If you are still experiencing the problem I guess it is something to try.  It helped me out a lot.  
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1140055_tn?1264059851
Just a thought... Have you looked into Celiac Disease/gluten intolerance? You may or may not be experiencing digestive issues, as those are often not present, but many people with mysterious problems that elude diagnosis, yet know there's something not right turn out to have Celiac. It's a pretty tricky disease as it can present itself in any number of ways in terms of symptoms. Neurological problems, fatty liver and fatigue would be on that list. The pounding heart, BP and sleep problems would be related to anxiety over the feeling that something is definitely wrong that elude diagnosis. I would read up on it, visit some message boards to read what others are going through and if it seems to sound familiar, ask your doctor for the antibody blood test.
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