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Need Strength

My PVC and PAC's have been rough for about a month now. The latest is as soon as I sit down to eat, drive my truck, or lay down to sleep, they kick up, and don't stop. I feel best when exercising, or moving. 2 nights ago, I went to dinner with my wife, and they were so bad, it ruined the whole evening. Tonight I'm not going to dinner with my wife and son, because I don't want to deal with the agony of sitting at a restaurant with my heart doing cartwheels. Can the mind cause this much trouble? I'm 52 year old male, and healthy. I've had these a long time. I just don't know why they are kicking up at rest. They are controlling my life again. Any words of wisdom? Thanks, Mark
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1616038_tn?1315957703
I have the exact same issues. My PVCs are episodic, and can be every few beats for hours at a time...they come out of nowhere, morning, noon or night...it is hard to ignore....However, I have resigned myself to the fact that no matter how hard I try to eliminate potential triggers, I will likely have this for the rest of my life. My only advice would be to do your best to ignore the PVCs. As hard as it may be, you have to accept that PVCs are harmless in the absence of heart disease, or structural problems. I am convinced that some of us are just wired a little differently. Have you had a full cardiac assessment? Holter monitor, stress test, echo, ECG etc? If so, you have to listen to your doctor, and trust that they are benign. Skipping a dinner with family to sit and stress about it will only fuel the fire. The busier you are, the better. My PVCs have really intensified over the last few months, and I can sympathize with your anxiety. Just remember there are many of us with the same problem, and all have received the same diagnosis from our doctors. Stay calm, and try not to let the PVCs stop you from enjoying your life. Good luck.
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Yes I have had all the usual tests, and have been told they are benign. I'm letting them get the best of me. You have convinced me to go to dinner after all. I will let you know how it goes. Thanks for the advice. Mark
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Avatar_f_tn
If you suffer from irregular heartbeats, then once you have been told, assured, retold, and had it demonstrated that your arrhythmias are benign, there are just about two options:

One is to let the fear of those benign beats take over your life, denying you the activities and pleasures that make your time on earth worthwhile.

The other is to get help for the symptom that does matter--the paralyzing fear.  

For some people, self-help--as offered in Claire Weekes' terrific little book, "Hope and Help for your Nerves"--can be somewhat effective.  She talks about the causes of anxiety and panic and irregular heartbeats, and offers simple exercises for dealing with this kind of fear, and maybe forestalling some episodes.

Having myself dealt with this problem for many years now, I recommend a faster route:  seeing a good shrink who is familiar with anxiety and panic.  Medications such as certain antidepressants can be enormously helpful in letting the 'alarm system cool off,' as my shrink puts it.  No one medication works for everyone, so several trials may be necessary, but believe me, you can get your life back again with the help of a skilled professional in the field.

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Avatar_f_tn
I am having the same as you...this weekend has been horrible. I too have had them for YEARS..and have had so many tests...a year ago I had the full workup--even a cardiac nuclear stress test..i have the palps off and on..they get bad...for a week or so..then they go away...no way can I tell what brings them on..well, I know stress does...but... they are REALLY bad today..my gosh, I bet i have 5-10 a minute sometimes....and i admit, ive allowed them to ruin my weekend. Yep. I do admit...i hate when they get the best of me, but its Sunday night, and they have been my focal point since early Saturday morning...IHATE it....but I sit here now..and they are thumping and bumping...and I am totally miserable. Sorry I cant offer advice...Im as miserable as anybody.
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967168_tn?1343732745
I know what you're feeling, I went so many years being told nothing was wrong, I lived my life really like nothing was wrong, never knowing something changed in my heart that turned dangerous. I envy those days and so glad I didn't let what I was feeling in my chest bother me for the most part.

It's funny when I think about it, once I went to the dr in 2009 and the dr told me I had roughly 50,000 pvcs and VT runs, I felt vindicated! like I wanted to take my results to my past doctors and show them and say HA! I knew there was something wrong but I was angry also, had a doctor listened to me years previous I may not have the complications I do now, but that can't be changed and I can't dwell on it.

Don't let these dreaded things ruin your life or take over; it can be very easy to do believe me...I've lived in fear of dying for almost 2 years...physically not being able to even walk due to damage from complications of surgery and meds, having a diagnosis of malignant arrhythmia's, yet I don't know what's caused it or know if the next thing I'm going to do or not do will stop my heart again....I decided to get off the merry go round.

I asked my dr for help, getting pain meds and being on beta blockers is a difficult decision for me because I don't like to take any meds; I'm afraid what they'll do to my system. Meds typically make me feel weak, tired and sleepy, but I feel like I'm finally starting to gain back the old me - fighting what might be a never ending battle of health issues that I am tired of dealing with.

Each day I get up with a new goal in mind; something that I can challenge myself with to do to make me healthier physically and mentally...if it means I have to take meds or ask for help, then so be it.  

Take one moment at a time and let each step move you forward =)
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1137980_tn?1281289046
Hey Mark i am a little traditional in my way of thinking but had some major issues w. PVC's a couple of years ago and i don't think in this day of medical science that anyone has to go thru this if there is something out there to take the edge off.  I vote of a low dose of beta blocker that may help if you talk to your doc and tell them how much this is effecting your life....we have all done the mental evaluations and trying to power thru them but for myself at the end of the day i had an ablation done a little over four years ago but not primarily for the PVC's but atrial fib.  PVC's were one of the issues that i had and the doc put me on a low dose beta blocker to block the adrenaline from starting up the PVC's and it worked for me.  I am just tossing in my two cents worth...benign PVC's are all fine and dandy however not when you stand at the living room window and watch your family drive off without you to dinner.  I would call your doc just to get some ideas of what he/she may toss out at you...i know this is no way to live my friend.
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I concur with Cindy here.  Sometimes just a very low dose of a beta blocker can make a big difference.  I didn't do to great on atenolol but my doctor gave me another beta blocker, bystolic, that really helped a lot.  It couldn't hurt to ask.
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Avatar_f_tn
Yes I have atenelol to take. It seemed to work well at first, but lately it does not seem to do much good. I also hate to take a medicine that controls my heartrate. When I get off the drug, my heart goes crazy for awhile, with the missed beats. Right now, I'm not taking anything. Dinner last nite went pretty well. It was a Mexican place. After dinner, it went through a series of hard PVC's for awhile. Then seemed to settle down. As one of you said, it seems that everything, and nothing can cause these. I know there must be a switch somewhere that turns them off. The challenge is finding the switch! Mark
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159619_tn?1318997813
I'm a 53 year old male that have the same problem. I get them worse when I transition to standing, sitting, walking basically anything that starts to elevate my heart rate. They completely go away with exercise and stay away for a couple hours of relief. I understand the comment about going out, there's nothing worse than being in a crowd expected to be sociable when your heart is doing back flips in your chest.

I recently went through 6 months of real bad PVC's. Doc said they were normal and not to worry, but you know how well that works. Then a few weeks ago, they just stopped again. Wish I knew why, I would share it with the world.

Hang in there, better times will come.

Jon
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