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Months of no PVCs, then all of a sudden they are back!!
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by JamesAA, Jan 10, 2012
I went about 1 year with very limited PVCs (the occasional one here or there).  Now all of a sudden, they are back again.  And the worst part is I can tell when they are about to it.  Something just doesn't feel right and sure enough, they come.  I can't put my finger on it.  According to my EP and Cardio I'm fine and they are considered benign.  What irks me is when I asked my cardio about times when they are almost non existent and he says that I'm probably having as many just not feeling it.  He's dead wrong.  I can feel each and every one, and I was able to prove this while being hooked up to an EKG.  He (my cardio) also says "cut back on caffeine, blah blah."  I don't drink caffeine and I have done nothing different right now than 1 week ago yet they are back, and when they are back they come in numbers.  So wtf is going on???  The funny thing is in "good times" (PVC free period) I can drink coffee or do all the things that are supposed to trigger PVCs, and yet I get none.  Yet in bad times I avoid all known causes to PVCs and I will get them anyway.  For the record I take daily vitamins including Mg (250mg), Omega 3, try  to drink 20 ounce of V8 a day (high in potassium), am not on meds.  My routine is the same throughout the year and yet some months I'm fine, other times I'm plagued w/PVCs.  I just want to know what the F is going on/causing them and also to know one thing....is this REALLY "normal," or I should say benign??????

Thanks,
James
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Member Comments (15)
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by RNRita, Jan 10, 2012
HI there.  You sound just like me...and probably a lot of us.  I will go many months feeling like I'm never getting them again, except for the occasional one or very short-lived runs that I can live with easily. Then, out of nowhere, they are back with a vengeance.  I've been doing this for over 25 years and haven't figured it out yet, and I am no dummy.  One thing I see that you do NOT take is Calcium in the AM.  That is responsible for muscular activity so once I added that, things got better again.  

I drink about 3-4 cups of coffee every day with no effect.  Stress is my main trigger and since it generally doesn't trigger them immediately, sometimes I have to think hard to figure out what stressed me...but I can usually come up with something.

I'm just saying that every time this happens to me, I think, "This time is different.  This time doesn't feel right,"  I also know that when I start that way of thinking, they get worse.  If they start up and I say, "They will go away shortly (even if it takes a few days), they let up sooner.  Sometimes, though, they just like to hang out.

Like I said, I'm 54 and this has been my life since I was 19 or so....
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by JamesAA, Jan 10, 2012
Extremely comforting and helpful Rita!!!  Thank you so very much for sharing this with me.  It means a lot and I sincerely appreciate it.   Continued good luck to you w/your battle against these darn things.  :)
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by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
Hey James, I am 21 and right on my 21st birthday I started experiencing these and they are awfully annoying and scary. I've been to 2 doctors multiple times, a cardiologist, and the ER. They all say I am fine and that it's a normal side effect to having anxiety. I'd like to say that if it weren't for my heart rhythm scaring the *&%^ out of me, I would have such severe anxiety. But you know that's just how it works. I take a multivitamin (1 a day vitacraves) and I'd like to know what all do you take to help you? Someone told me magnesium and calcium. I am on prozac for anti anxiety but it makes me so dang tired all the time, which contributes to the pvc's. If you have any advice please let me know! Thanks, Mandy.
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by JamesAA, Jan 10, 2012
Hi Mandy.  Yeah they (PVCs) suck and they make my anxiety WAY higher when I'm having "bad PVC" days.  I've read a lot about these things and it's really hard to figure out what's up.  Too much magnesium can cause PVCs, too little magnesium can cause PVCs....very confusing/hard to know what to do, BUT from what I gather as long as you eat a fairly normal diet and are not taking any meds that are diuretics then our electrolyte levels should be normal--electrolytes being magnesium, calcium, potassium, sodium, etc. And as for your anti anxiety meds...I'm pretty sure SSRI's like prozac are not diuretics, so it shouldn't be causing an electrolyte imbalance.  The only reason I bring up electrolytes is because they are key to heart rhythms.   It's very possible anxiety or added stress in your life is the cause of the PVCs.  I feel that in my case this is possible though I also suspect there is something else going on, but it's pretty hard for Dr's to tell exactly why healthy/people with normal hearts get these.  I've even read that endurance athletes (such as myself) may go through times of PVCs as the heart adjusts and actually gets "bigger" over time due to the benefits of exercise.  So I've tried all the supplements (calcium, magnesium, etc, etc) and in my experience it didn't do much--either I'm having a PVC free period, which could last for weeks or months, or I'm having a time where I can't get rid of them...and the supplements, whether I take them or not, do not seem to change that one bit.  Confusing I know. LOL  Did that help at all though?  Feel free to ask more questions..seriously.  That's what we're here for.  :)
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by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
Wow, that is so confusing! I wish there was just an answer for all of this. It's so crazy just sitting around waiting for it to come or not to come. Funny you mention electrolytes and stuff like that because ever since I experienced my first attack I've lost my appetite. If I don't feel good I just won't eat. And I'm becoming full on smaller meals and losing weight when I'm already petite to begin with. Normally 100-112 and right now I'm 104. The attacks have been at their worst this week and I last ate yesterday afternoon. I've had a few sips of water today but I'm really nauseous. So, I am probably somewhere near dehydration which is triggering my irregular heart rhythm which triggers my anxiety which steals my appetite! It's a never-ending process and its exhausting :( my sister thinks I should go to the er. My doctor said stop taking the prozac. And I'm seeing a cardiologist on Thursday. About me feeling dehydrated, since I don't have food and only a small amount of water in me I feel weak and tired I don't even want to get up now. Not to mention the chest pain due to the weakness. Any contributions to this?? Thanks for all of your help! It really makes a difference :)
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by JamesAA, Jan 10, 2012
Oh make sure to stay hydrated and don't starve yourself.  There's no question that dehydration will make the PVCs act up.  Unfortunately for me and many of us just being hydrated won't make them go away (I wish it worked that way) but definitely being dehydration will make them worse.  
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by camsmommy727, Jan 10, 2012
I wish that I didn't feel so sick so I could eat. I am starving. I've been sipping on water as much as I can to keep myself hydrated. I hope this passes soon so I'm at a better state of mind for dealing with the PVCs. And I only pray that I will be able to sleep tonight! I've been up since 5am when my panic started and I'm still not even vaguely tired. My doctor asked that I stop taking the Prozac. I am planning on taking one of my 0.25mg of Xanax to help me rest and be panic free, do you happen to know if you are able to mix those 2 drugs? I last took the Prozac yesterday at 10pm. I think I will call my pharmacy if they are still open.
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by JamesAA, Jan 11, 2012
Well I assure you that better days are ahead...this will pass.  You can take Xanax with prozac but let me caution you about Xanax (as your Dr. should have, but if he didn't you should have a talk with him/her).  Xanax works, BUT it's HIGHLY addictive and controversial even in the medical community.  You should only use it sparingly, i.e. if you are afraid of flying it's ok to take one on a flight, given that you probably do not fly everyday.   If you are a very disciplined person and don't lean on Xanax in stressful times, then take it, but with caution.  I know a TON of people who have become addicted to it and there lives are worse off because of it.  IMO the BEST way to deal with anxieties/panic disorder is through cognitive therapy, which is drug/meds free.  Mother nature is a funny thing and it seems every time you take a pill to relieve something there is going to be a consequence/price to pay.  So just be careful with Xanax or any other meds in the benzo family (valium, ativan, kloponpin, etc).  Again, talk to your Dr. about this and I'm sure he/she will say the same thing...or at least they should.  I know things are tough right now but if you start taking Xanax daily, while you will have relief in the short run, things will only be harder later...much harder in fact.  You can get over many if not all of your anxieties through non-med therapy.  Does your medical coverage/hospital have some sort of group therapy program for people with anxiety?
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by camsmommy727, Jan 12, 2012
I keep thinking that, but it's just so hard right now! I haven't taken any of the Xanax. I stopped the Prozac and just feel tired and groggy. I finally received a call back from my doctor and she wants me to come in to discuss further options. I, as well, do not want to take anything that is going to become habit forming. I do know that Xanax is one of the worst and I will only take it in need of emergency. I've only taken about 2 since I've had them in October. I would like to start some type of therapy to deal with this also. I just don't know how to go about that. I can talk to my doctor about that also. I would MUCH rather figure this out and get through this the drug free way but I am not getting any support from my boyfriend. He thinks I am crazy and it's driving him crazy :( it pays a toll on my anxiety as well.