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Is Sudden Cardiac Arrest rare?

I worry all the time that it will happen to me. I read stories about it happening to seemingly healthy young adults for no reason and now constantly feel anxious that Im next.
Im a 30 year old female. I havent smoked for 3 years. I try to exercise at least 4-5 times a week. Im a tiny bit overweight due to the antidepressants that Ive been on. As far as I know there is no history of heart disease in my family. I had an ECG about a month ago due to a racing heart (cause was dehydration) and it came back normal. Ive also had blood tests done to detect heart disease which were also normal. My blood pressure is "perfect" according to the doctor and my cholesterol is normal. I know this looks fine on paper but some things that I have read are about young adults who are fitter and healthier than me with no prior symptoms.
My only heart related issue is that every now and then I feel a tiny small thud in my chest. Its never paired with any other symptoms like nausea, shortness of breath or lightheadedness. Just a small thud every now and then. Sometimes I can feel them multiple times a day and other times I can go for weeks without noticing it. I can barely sleep at night for fear that I will suffer a sudden cardiac arrest in my sleep and die. Any help would be appreciated
3 Responses
Avatar universal
Sudden cardiac arrest is very rare.

Considering that you are young and that your heart has been thoroughly checked out, your risk is essentially zilch.

The 'thuds' you feel are very likely premature ventricular contractions, small, early beats that everyone gets--but which only hypersensitive people really feel.

You sound as though you flirting with a pretty serious case of 'cardiac neurosis,' which you can google.

At this point, you have two choices:

1. Let your enjoyment of life be paralyzed by a fear with virtually no basis in reality.

2.  See a therapist or shrink to learn how to minimize your fear--and get back to a normal life.
do you know how rare it actually is?
Numbers very slightly.  The largest comparative study (42,000 subjects) was completed in Italy in 2006.  They found that the death rate in young *non-competitive athletes* (which you are) was 0.9 in 100,000 per year.  That means that fewer than one non-competitive person among 100,000 experienced sudden cardiac death per year.  Here's a graphic to help with the concept:


It would make more sense to focus your worries on cancer or injury.  They are far more likely to happen.
Avatar universal
Its rare, happens to people with heart abronmaloties. In my case its weird, Ive had every possible heart test come back negative. MRI, echocardiogram, stress echocardiogram, stress tests, EP study, and countless blood work and xrays. Still a holter monitor caught an episode of ventricular tachycardia. With seemingly no cause. Ive been terrified and paranoid all of my life about having heart problems. Since im a hypochondriac, it sucked really bad. Now that they actually caught something, im terrified and dont even leave my bed. Im only 23, no family history of cardiac problems or sudden death or anything. Have done sports all of my life, except this last year cause i stopped from the fear of dropping dead. I dont understand how i got the ventricular tachycardia. Instead of one skipped beat, or pvc, it was 22 in a row. Which is crazy. Im terrified.
Avatar universal
Hi there.
If I were you I would read ana re read the post above from
All thats in it is exactly correct.
Its time to live life and chill!
Do as Achillea says, its the right advice
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