I've read several posts over the last few days. I've suffered from PVC's ever since I weaned my first of two children, and, like many of you, I have changed my diet, wracked my brain for triggers, taken beta blockers and generally learned to live with it. Of course there are times when the PVC's get bad that I run through the whole cycle again, including going to the Cardiologist to ask if they're SURE everything is okay.
My reason for posting today is that I've noticed many posts where vasovagal syncope is listed as a syndrome that ranks with IST etc. It has made me think. When I was 17, I was diagnosed with Vasovagal syndrome...I was one of the first tested on a tilt table, and when I passed out after only 11 minutes, my heart rate dropped to 11 beats per minute!! The doc put me on Norpace for awhile, but I stopped after less than a year, because I read the side effects and figured passing out was mild compared to the possible harm done by the meds.
The Vasovagal issues seem to have subsided with time, age and pregnancy, but the PVC's remain. I wonder if the Vasovagal issues, caused by an upset in the autonomic nervous system, and the PVC's are connected. Maybe my problem is my brain...not my heart!! Hey...maybe it is all in my head!!!
Does anyone know if there's a connection? Or does anyone have any interesting information or research they've heard of??
It seems funny to me that so much research went in to testing people who faint (as I said I was part of the study) , but are otherwise normal and healthy, but so little is done regarding the PVC's and prevention or treatments that will improve long term quality of life.
I was "clocked" at upwards of 1500 in a day at one time, though I have to say I didn't notice all of those. There are times when I get them for hours at a time and just have to push through, and other times when I might go weeks without noticing anything. Then for some reason they slam into me and I'll have several weeks when I'm not sure if I will ever be "normal" again. I've had 4 episodes of SVT over the years, which scare me more than ANYTHING, because it feels like my heart simply isn't working and I'll just die right there. I guess the biggest thing is how it makes you focus so much on your heart beat that you don't pay close attention to the things around you that matter (kids playing, husband talking, life in general).
Yesterday was a bad day. After posting I went to pick up my Dad from day surgery and had a vasovagal response....passed out right there in recovery. That's never fun, because I have to explain to the nurses that "really, I'm fine and YES I can drive him home, just give me 10 minutes to recover." Then I had what I call rebound PVC's all afternoon.
I had about that when I was pregnant. Clocked at 1786 on an average day. I feel them all so I am able to predict the holter results quite accurately before I get them. Mine are all good at the moment though in the low dozens rather than thousands. Never had SVT though. That sounds horrible. Well I do have a fast fluttery rhythm very occasionally but I think it's short bursts of nsvt and it only lasts a few seconds. Hope you have some relief soon.
The syncope is a vasovagal response which I started to experience long before I had ever even heard of PVC's. I've been on the tilt table, and had a "significant" (if you can call 3 doctors rushing to the table to "push the atripine" significant) reaction after 11 minutes. I went through a whole battery of tests then...there was no sign of arhythmia then.
I'm just curious if anyone has a link like that. I have often wondered if the two issues are related, or if the vasovagal somehow triggered the PVC's. I've also wondered if the meds they put me on (Norpace) may have caused the later appearance of PVC's. Norpace has some nasty side effects, and if I had realized that at the time, I would not have taken it. I've always wondered whether or not I brought this on myself just because I didn't want to faint once or twice a year....because otherwise I was completely healthy.
My daughter (17 years) had her first syncope experience a year or so ago - after going to the doctor thet recommended we go straight to the hospital if there was another event so it could be monitored. We did this and she had her first ECG where they found she had / was experiencing very frequent PVC's. At this time she was feeling fine as the syncope symptoms are shortlived but though this we found she had PVC's all the time. She has had many tests which have all come back fine excpet she too had a reaction on the tilt test after 14 minutes. We have seen a cardiologist as well as a cardio electro physician and the end diagnosis was benign PVC's (though alot of them) and Vasovagal syncope. She has not been on any drugs to supress the PVC's as the cardiologist was reluctant to try these as the side affects can be unpleasant and as she does not feel the PVC's most of the time. The whole ordeal has been alarming for us as she is a healthy teenager with no previous problems with her health and the pre syncope and syncope has been reallly frightening for her as you do worry about the two things being related and it is something that we have little control over.....
We were really interested to hear about you and the related syptoms and conditions.
Hi there "neighbor." Interesting that the situation seems so mirrored to mine isn't it? I will say that the good news for your daughter is that, once you know what it is, at least the syncope is "dealable." It's when you don't know if you're having a stroke, or an epileptic seizure that things are really scary. Once I was "diagnosed" correctly, the main course of action was to keep my blood pressure up. So, unlike 90% of Americans today, I was put on a HIGH salt diet :-). When I'm 60 I'll be sorry for that I'm sure.
As for the PVC's, they scared the stuffin' out of me when they showed up. I had no idea what those palpitations were, and I was certain that my heart would just hiccup a few too many times and kill me right off. But, after much testing, I was again diagnosed with a "benign" condition. So, over time, I've learned to live with both.
I will say that pregnancy was wonderful for me. I did not suffer from syncope OR PVC's during pregnancy and all was right with the world. And the doctors were not concerned one bit about my ability to carry a child. So, I did it twice. And I have two beautiful babies (now 6 and 3) in my life that were worth every minute :-).
I still faint every once in awhile. And, apparently it is still just as scary for those around me as it was the very first time. But I've learned to avoid ambulances when it happens...sometimes to the chagrin of those around me. And the PVC's, unlike your daughter's unfelt ones, plague me at times. But again, I've learned to live with them most of the time.
There are times when it is all a bit overwhelming. In the summer, when others are goofing around with their family, my blood pressure drops (due to enlarged vessels for heat reduction) and my PVC's go nuts and I feel really awful. That's a bummer. But all in all, I know I'm mostly "normal" and I can live a long and healthy life with my beautiful babies and husband. So...the prognosis is GOOD for your little girl.
Feel free to click on my link (blue dolfnlvr) and send a message if you are interested in more information.
...and others here as well. Finding this discussion has provided some comfort to me. I started feeling PVC's a few months ago and more recently started having episodes of I guess what's called pre syncope as I do not pass out...at least not yet. I am a 47 yr old male in decent shape. I was told 10 years ago that I get these PVC's but never felt them until recently. I have to say that I have been getting a bit frightened by these recent episodes as they seem to be getting more and more frequent. The doctors keep talking about anxiety and panic attacks but I am having a hard time accepting that. I swear when it happens I feel like I am coming dangerously close to being 'unplugged'. I have been wearing an event monitor the last few days and after I had a few bad episodes of PVC's accompanied by pre syncope I called my cardiologist and asked him (insisted) that he get his hands on the read out and call me back. He did and he said he saw PVC's but nothing that alarmed him. he didn't know why I was getting 'light headed' when this would happen. I guess i feel better since he didn't instruct me to get to the emergency room or anything like that. I am sure the fact that a very good friend recently died a sudden death from a heart arythmia he didn't even know he had has been causing me more anxiety than I might have otherwise. Anyone feel that I should be pushing the doctors harder or maybe getting a second opinion?
The pre-syncope would concern me as well. Let me tell you, I may seem a bit more cavalier then the average PVC/Syncope sufferer, but it has not always been so. There are so many things that can be associated with these symptoms. That you went from benign, unnoticed PVC's to palpitations that cause weakness and dizziness is a concern. I would support a second opinion. While you may (and hopefully will) find the results to be the same...it never hurts to double check.
I have POTS and PVCs, I guess this is common. I fainted 45 minutes into my test, but was considered positive at 10 minutes because of radical heart rate/blood pressure fluctuations. My PVCs were diagnosed from an EKG. My daughter has PVCs too, and passed out after less than 5 minutes on tilt table from Vasovagal.
I say keep pushing the docs or get a 2nd opinion. Presyncope is nothing to take lightly. My doctors were very concerned when I reported my syncopal episodes combined with palpitations. I'm sorry you lost your friend to Sudden Cardiac Death. According to the Cleveland Clinic, SCD is the leading cause of "natural" death in the U.S.
I've often wondered about various cardiovascular problems originating in the brain myself. I have some sort of centrally caused neurological pain syndrome for years. Also had centrally caused sleep apnea (breath holding) and hyper reflexes etc. Finally, I contracted PVC's that got worse and worse, then sick sinus syndrome. All the CNS symptoms make me suspicious that the PVC's and SSS originated in the CNS, or the same thing that caused the central symptoms also caused the PVC's and SSS.
I think heart docs are in love with their instruments. To be sure, the instruments are wonderful, but I think of them as 1-dimensional. PVC's for example register in a certain ways, but how is the actual heart muscle reacting to the electrical signals? Sometimes PVC's make me feel weak, sometimes not, That tells me the heart monitor doesn't tell you everything that's going on with the heart itself.
thanks for your input. I had all my records from my local hospital and current cardiologist sent over to St Francis Hospital's Arythmia Dept and have an appointment for this Friday. I intend to be as sure as i can that I am ok. Best of health to all of you.
Went to the EP guy at a local well noted Arythmia Center and after hearing all my doctors to this point tell me that everything looks normal and to just tale a xanax I fully expected to hear this guy reiterate the same. That was not the case and now I am freaking out. He said that my EKG was sugestive of Brugada Syndrome aka Sudden Unexpected death Syndrome. I am scheduled for an EP test four days from now. He gave me the option of riding it out in the emergency room til then but said I had a 99.95% chance of being fine if I went home and came back four days from now for the test....Now here is the strange part... He claimed that my cardiologist called him and asked him to come in on his day off to see me and that he concurred with my cardiologist's observations that my EKG was suggestive of Brugada. After I left his office I of course called my cardiologist to ask why he has been telling me that my EKG's looked normal ...he said that they do and that he never called the EP guy about me he called him about another patient. So....I called back the EP guy who afte some dancing around said that he basically only said that to "cover" my cardiologist. I guess intimating that my cardiologist should have picked this up. He said that my indications were the light headed episodes , a tilt table test that showed nothing, and an EKG that he insisted was suggestive of Brugada. He also said that what I did have on my side that spoke against Brugada was the fact that during the time so far that I have been wearing an event monitor and when I recorded symptoms my cardiologist was seeing anything alarming ...just some pvc's but i don't think he, The EP guy, actually looked at the cardio read outs...I think he was just going on what i told him. I went straight to my cardilogists office gathered up all my EKG's and event monitor reports and went to my GP to sort this out...the one or two things that I saw on my event monitor reports were a few episodes of ST one leading to PSVT for 12 seconds and also a reported event of Bradycardia (55BPM). So needless to say I'm scared shootless and am wondering if I should have chosen to ride out the next few days in the ER waiting for this EP test. If it proves positive for Brugada they said they will implant a Defribilator. I'm a mess!!!
Anxiousl to hear what your docs figure out. Your situation sounds exactly like mine. I talked a friend into getting me in to see an EP doctor. He had me wear an event monitor for 3 months. I had several of these near syncope episodes during this time. I called his office to ask them to look at the tapes and his nurse told me twice, "nothing more than single PVC's". So now they are looking at me like I am having panic attacks. I hope they are right, but am not sure yet.
Well I'm back from the hospital after having every test known to man...including, of course, an EP study which included administering a drug to invoke brugada symptoms and I am very relieved that they were not able to. At this point I am going to choose to feel confident that there is nothing seriously wrong with my heart (or head for that matter as they did an MRI of that as well) and look towards Lexapro for relief from my symptoms.
Bob, my advice is be proactive and...trust your doctors. Best of health to you.
I was told I have PVC but the doctors just blew it off like its not a big deal, Im pregnant with my third child and when im pregnant is when they feel really bad my heart skips every 2 beats sometimes but usually its every eight beats or so, and some times i feel like im having a heart attack, chest pain that shoots up the side of my neck, If anyone has any advise for me or knows something i dont please let me know,
Glad to read your good news. I'm curious, did the EP study completely rule out Brugada or any other arrhythmic disorders? For your sake I hope so. I only wish my EP study had been unsuccessful at inducing arrhythmias. I do have an ICD. It's not my first choice of appliances to own (I could own a really nice car, I mean really really nice) for the price of this device, but then again my HMO wouldn't pay for a car. However, it's not such a bad piece of equipment. Anways, congratulations!
my 23 yr old daughter was dx this past weekend with neurocardiogenic syndrome, and is having same issues as all of you, great article if you google that word,by a neuro institute in ohio....f.y.i. now she needs to keep salt with her at all times and ingest loads of fluids, there are meds they want to try her on as well, cant keep her b/p up......like 80/27 when standing
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