Heart Disease Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Multiple Bigeminys

I have been getting runs of bigeminys lasting up to an hour all day long. They will start with a hard skip and continue. I do get a break in between, but lasting no more than half an hour. This has been going on for a month.  My cardiologist wants to put me on tambacor, .50mg twice a day.  I'm a little afraid to go on that pill. What is your opinion of tambacor?  I take atenolol now, .50mg a day ( cut in half twice a day.) Also I take avapro 150mg daily. Also I take synthroid .112mg.  Atenolol does nothing for me but slow my heart down.  I have been plagued with heart skips for 20 years.  Been through every test possible, and tried everything possible.  Nothing works.  I know I can't continue this way. It is leaving me paralyzed with fear.  Any suggestions?  Do you think I could wean myself off of the atenolol?  I have been taking it for many years.  Ablation is out, too many horror stories about that.  Do you think the slow heart beat (56 to 62) could be a culprit? I just want my life back, I'm so depressed.  Thanks for listening.  Barbara
21 Responses
Avatar universal

Thanks for the post.

Q:"What is your opinion of tambacor?"

We frequently use flecainide (tambecor) for a variety of conditions.  It is a useful medicine when used correctly.

Q:"Any suggestions?"

Once a person gets to the point of "I know I can't continue this way. It is leaving me paralyzed with fear.", it is past time to seek help.  Many possible therapies exist, including medicines, learning coping skills, and ablation procedures.  You have to decide which bothers you more: the therapies or the palpitations.

Q:"Do you think I could wean myself off of the atenolol?"

You need to talk to your doctor about this possibility.

Q:"Do you think the slow heart beat (56 to 62) could be a culprit?"

It could be, but unlikely.

Q:" Ablation is out, too many horror stories about that"

The stories that you read on the internet tend to be extreme.  Many people benefit greatly from ablation.  It's at least worth discussing with your doctor.

Best of luck.
Avatar universal
As someone who has had a similar experience there is no easy solution.  I can remember times where I would have a PAC every other beat for hours, then it would quit, and then it would go active again.  This lasted for quite some time.  However it did eventually subside.  I thought I would go crazy.

It sounds like you are very stressed.  I would suggest going to a psychiatrist.  I know for me I took anti-anxiety meds to start out with, and then I took some bio-feedback to help get me relaxed.  I was very stressed out by the PAC's like yourself.  Eventually they subsided to a tolerable rate. It sounds like your body is in a fight-flight mode.

Antiarrythmics may help, but not necessarily.  Atenolol did not do much for me.  In fact sometimes slowing the heart too much may increase PAC's.

I did eventually get an ablation for AFIB, which the PAC's developed into.  I'm doing much better, not perfect.  I still get some PAC's but not nearly as many.   I haven't had AFIB for some time.  It could come back at any time, but at least it would probably be treatable with meds or I could try another ablation. I can actually sleep at night which is a wonderful feeling.

I would listen to your cardiologist, but I would also deal with the mental side of it as well.  It will be interesting to see what the doc says.
Avatar universal
I know how everyone feels...I have had PVC's since I was 20...with occasional bigeminy. I am 48 and still flip-flopping away. I hate it and coping is hard. I appreciate the coping tips very much. I previously posted at this site under the username heartdancer but had to re-register because the email address I registered with changed and I forgot my password and there was no way for them to email it to me. Hank it is great to see you posting again and feel free to email anytime...the email address you have for me is still correct...Hope all is well with you....flip-flop
Avatar universal
I forgot to say that I also take 5 mg of Norvasc for labile hypertension.

Avatar universal
I suffer from ventricular bigeminy myself.  Which drives me insane as hell.  I took tambocore it seemed like a miracle for about 2 months and then it didnt help  at all.  I do smoke which I know I need to stop.  So I dont know if my smoking eliminated the tambocore from my system faster or what.  I also tried an ablation but because I dont stay in bigem for days on end they couldnt find the spot causing the bigem.  However if they thought they could find it I would do it all over again.  Because Bigeminy really sucks and makes life hell.
Avatar universal
Hi know just how you feel and I posted a very similar question see archives on 3/22/04 {Gaspipe}. I bet you will get the same answers. I was on atenotol far years and when it no longer conrolled the PVCs went to flecainide {Tambacor}which stopped the Pvcs cold. Iam now off Tambacor and back to atenolol and back to PVCs. The decision you will likely need to make is if you can mentally tolerate the skips if not Tambacor will need to be considered. At present my solution is stay active and don,t sit there and take your pulse all day or you'll go crazy. Ive had the skips for 20 years and know how you feel.Keep your chin up stay active drink your Gatorade and don't look back. Iam with you
Avatar universal
I am 68 years old. I had ablation to eliminate afib nine weeks and two days ago and haven't had any afib since the procedure. I suffered with severe pvc's for thirty-five to forty years along with afib and separately as well.  I still am plagued with pvc's and some bigeminy throughout each day. Lots of bigeminy the past two days.  I noticed Pluto takes cozaar along with atenolol, 25 mgs four times daily.
I also take atenolol, 25 mgs twice daily. I notice that cozaar (what dosage?), and this dosage of atenolol has helped control your pvc's quite effectively.  Pluto what dosage(s) of atenolol were you taking and how often daily when it made your pvc's worse?  Also, does atenolol cause you to be fatigued?  It causes me lots of fatigue.  It doesn't slow my heartrate below 70 bpm as I have a twin-lead pacemaker.

I also am still taking 100 mgs of flecainide (Tambacor) as I was taking before my ablation and also 10 mgs of coumadin daily.
These PVC's are terrible. They prevent me from doing anything and going anywhere because many times I go somewhere and have to have help because they get so bad. I know exactly how Barbara feels as these things drive me up a wall.

The Dr. that did my ablation expects the pvc's to subside as my heart heals and he has told me to allow three to six months for my heart to heal and see what happens.  That does nothing as far as adjusting to the problem now.  I have been wearing a 30 day event monitor and all the tracings are not in the doctors hands yet.


Avatar universal
That would be a great discovery if Cozaar turned out to have an anti-arrhythmic effect. I'm curious to know if it was the magnesium, the Atenolol or the cozaar or all of these combined or just a coincidence. My cardiologist started me on Magnesium Oxide 400mg after my A-Fib episode two and a half years ago. I haven't had A-Fib since that time. However, my magnesium was a little low at the time of my A-Fib episode.  Glad your doing well.

Avatar universal
Forgive my ignorance...but what is bigeminy?  Hello to all...this is a great and helpful forum!
Avatar universal
Hi Hank... Im new here.. really have benefited from your insight. Pvc's whether frequent or infrequent can be very disturbing. I know this isnt the right thread but i viewed with interest your views on nsvt.. of which im sure ive had a few bouts. With at least one of them a three beat run coming during heavy excersize. Anyway, in your view could a slightly weak heart, brought about by stress, heavy exercize and border hypertension along with a little too much to drink bring on pvc's all of a sudden? I had echos done, and ekg, and holter and a topnotch cardio said my heart was fine, with the echo report all showing normal with an ef of 60% In other words could it be between benign and something else? I know your not a doc but i do value your opinion. thank you
Avatar universal
Pluto, in your above post addressed to me you described the kind of pvc's I have had in the past and am still having after my PVI in March. In fact I have them everyday. Sometimes I have to grab something or someone before 'hitting the floor'. Sometimes I have lighter ones and just just know I've had a pvc.  When they are in secession, one right after the other without any good beats in between them is rotten.  There's no way I can function.  It's 'down time' and there's nothing that can be done until I start having a good beat or two in between pvc's.  Then I also have some bigeminy as well.

You and another couple of persons are the only ones I can relate to that have these kind of pvc's.  I am reluctant to go anywhere by myself because they are so bad sometimes that I have to have some help.  I can't even walk very far, like a half mile, occassionally one mile, and not everyday.  It depends how furious the pvc's are.  Sometimes I go for days without being able to 'take a walk' and I get weak from sitting and laying around so much.

The EP that did my ablation in March for afib claims the pvc's will subside after my heart heals.  It's been over nine weeks since the ablation and I'm still having as many or more severe pvc's.

Oh well,   blah blah blah,  same old song, same old ver huh?

I wish there were some majic pill,.......

Avatar universal
I might also mention the EP that did my ablation said I had a lot of fibrous tissue in my heart.  Then after all the heart tests I have had performed, the cardiologists and EP's say there's nothing wrong with my heart, no underlying heart problems.

Kind of weird huh?

Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Is a low-fat diet really that heart healthy after all? James D. Nicolantonio, PharmD, urges us to reconsider decades-long dietary guidelines.
Can depression and anxiety cause heart disease? Get the facts in this Missouri Medicine report.
Fish oil, folic acid, vitamin C. Find out if these supplements are heart-healthy or overhyped.
Learn what happens before, during and after a heart attack occurs.
What are the pros and cons of taking fish oil for heart health? Find out in this article from Missouri Medicine.
How to lower your heart attack risk.