Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
Teen with SVT, Arrhythmias, & other symptoms
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Questions in this forum are answered by pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons and anesthesiologists from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. This forum is for questions and support about pediatric heart problems, symptoms and topics such as heart murmurs, palpitations, fainting, chest pain, congenital heart defects (including management and intervention), fetal cardiology, adult congenital cardiology, arrhythmias and pre-participation athletic screening.

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Teen with SVT, Arrhythmias, & other symptoms

My 17 yr old son has been having episodes of chest pain with palpitations, fast beating, dizzyness, shortness of breath. It seems to be bad ever since he had a severe case of mono in April this year. Since then, every time he sleeps his blood pressure drops too low, then when he gets up he gets instantly dizzy with headache on top of head (lasting a few minutes) then blood pressure gets too high after getting up every time. He has been having alot of episodes of chest pain with palpitations (pain in center of chest and radiates slightly to the left), with dizzyness, also his heart beats very fast at times for no reason with just walking around or even while sitting. His dr. had him get EKG it showes sinus arrhythmia and SVT, and then holter monitor for 48 hrs showed heartbeat going from 40 bpm to 180 bpm for no reason, also showes other arrhythmias. The doctor didn't go over results of the holter with us, but he told us some things found on it, and said he needs to see a pediatric cardiologist ASAP, he said something is going on. We are very worried and are waiting for insurance to approve cardiologist, that might take weeks. We are very worried if any of this could cause sudden cardiac arrest with those arrhythmias, chest pain, dizzyness, SVTs, low and high bpm, and sudden changes in blood pressure with change in position. I am so worried I can't sleep much since I found all this out. Heart problems run in my family, I have alot of rhythm problems and on toprol myself. My son is not on any medications. I would really appreciate a reply as to if this could be urgent or very serious. Thank you so much for reading this.
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773637_tn?1327450515
Dear Angelize,

Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) is an abnormal fast heart rhythm that can be a nuisance, although it is typically not life threatening AS LONG AS there is a structurally normal heart and it doesn't last long.  SVT is very treatable with either medications or with radiofrequency ablation, in which the source of the SVT is located and eliminated in a special cardiac catheterization procedure.

However, your son's symptoms sound like more than just that.  I cannot say for sure without evaluating him, but he may have postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS).  It often occurs after a mono-like illness, and can cause dizziness, headaches, chest pain, palpitations, heat or cold intolerance, insomnia, severe fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and some other findings.  I recommend the following 2 sites to read more:  www.dinet.org and www.dynakids.org.  If you think that his symptoms are consistent with POTS, you may want to be seen by a cardiologist or other provider who is familiar with this and can treat this.
2 Comments
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383138_tn?1314171373
Thank you so much for your reply with the helpful information & websites. I will certainly check into that right away.
We are trying to get the cardiologist appointment set up, it is just taking so long to get approval from insurance.
I really appreciate your reply and I am very grateful for the information you provided.
Thank you so much for your services on this wonderful website.
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Jeffrey R Boris, M.D.Blank
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
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The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Philadelphia, PA
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