Depression/Mental Health Forum
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Avatar universal

Anxiety, pulse, and beta-blockers?

I'm a 23 year-old male and a little over two years ago--Dec. 1997--I went into a major depression.  This depression was caused by some shocking information that was revealed to me, consequently resulting in great anxiety as well.  From late December 1997 to well into January, I remember that while my body was at rest, my pulse was in the high 120's.  This high heart rate persisted for at least a month without much variation (10 to 15 bpm lower at times).  Though my pulse did gradually come to a lower resting rate, it has not fallen below 100 bpm in over two years now.  

Before my depression/anxiety started, my resting pulse had always been in the 70's.  Is continual rapid heart beat a usual sympton of an anxiety disorder.  During my waking hours I always feel nervous and uneasy and I usually can't put my finger on a cause.  Is it possible that some chemical or hormone imbalance occurred as a result of my heightened and persistent anxiety beginning in Dec. 1997?  If so, would a beta-blocker possibly help slow my pulse and reduce some of my anxiety?

My current psychiatrist is aware that my problem with high pulse began well before I started taking antidepressants.  In fact, I didn't begin taking any medication until December of 1998, one year after the onset of my depression/anxiety.  My psychiatrist  has suggested I get this problem checked out by a specialist and I plan to do so once I get health insurance.  

I'm really just curious as to your opinion on a chronic anxiety problem being iniatiated by an intense depressive episode and if you think beta-blockers or some other type of medication may be helpful.

Thank you for your time,
1 Responses
Avatar universal
Dear Matt

Anxiety can result from several reasons.The following are some of the peripheral manifestations of anxiety- diarrhea,increased heart rate, palpitations,high blood pressure, urinary frequency, tingling in the extremities, upset stomach etc.Medical conditions such as heart problems, thyroid problems can result in increased heart rate. It is difficult to precisely say whether your increased heart rate is from the anxiety or  any underlying medical conditions.Iwould agree with your psychiatrist that you need to get a complete evaluation from a medical doctor before considering   beta-blockers. Beta blockers does help in reducing the heart rate and in relieving performance anxiety.At present there are several medications that are available in the market which are proven to be safe and effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders.I hope this information is helpful to you.
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