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Avatar universal

Will these heart palpitations that were triggered by cocaine use go away? Please help.

First, let me give you a bit of background information. I am a 21 year old male and I have been using cocaine for about 1 year. I would consider my use as recreational. Over the past year there would be months where I would not even touch the drug. Then, months when I was using, I would do about 6 lines on just one day of the week and wouldnt touch it for at least another week. However, this month, I have used once a week for 4 weeks. This is where my problem has started....

Last wednesday after being out almost all night using cocaine and drinking alcohol, I came home and began coming off of the drug. The next day, at about 5 pm, my heart rate shot up without warning to 120 beats per minute. Needless to say, I was freaked out but decided to wait it out and eventually it went down to 80 beats per minute.

However, every once in a while, I will think about it and it can cause the heart to go back up to the 120 beats per minute. I decided to go to the emergency room where they gave me a EKG and did some blood and urine work. They said the EKG showed an abnormal rhythm with my heart. The blood and urine work actually showed up negative for cocaine and everything else just 4 days after having used.

I left the emergency room with a diagnosis from the ER doctor. He said I have heart palpitations. They also told me that the effects of the cocaine could still be effecting my system even though blood and urine showed up negative for cocaine. It has been about 6 days since I used cocaine. I feel like I have swallowed a bunch of diet pills. I feel drained.

I am hoping that my heart palpitations will eventually stop. If not, I will be getting referred to a specialist to have an echogram done on my heart.

Please, if anybody has any insight on this matter, please help. Will my heart palpiations stop? Will the effects eventually leave my system? Did I just get a bad batch of cocaine? I'm desperate for help.

72 Responses
Avatar universal
Do not worry, it just making things worst. You stopped, that is the main thing. You are only 21. Be happy it happened to you now and not later in your life when your heart muscle could have got a damaged. If you need an ultrasound, fine it won’t harm you; at least you will even know more about your heart. It is a fun experience! Good luck and congratulation to you: on not using more cocaine! Good for you! Spend that money on nice things for yourself, you would waste on the thing.:)  
You will be OK! Let us know!
370280 tn?1198659481
I have a similar experience that might help you. I'm 36 yof, and still feel the affects of drug abuse from my teens. I was on cocaine/crack for a year and then went on a 3-day binge when I had a sudden onset of severe palpitation that dropped me to my knees. I was 17 and I thought I was going to die. Scared to death, I went to the ER, they did all the tests and told me to quit using or I'll die, that he had seen people in autopsies from my drug of choice and explained the obvious damage to the internal organs.  I never touched drugs again. The doctor said he thought I had experienced palpitations or even a minor heart attack, but they weren't too concerned as I recall, like the attitude was "Dumb teenager, you'll live."

The first year after I quit I started having severe anxiety attacks which included palpitations, albiet minor compared to that night, hallucinations started in a few years later and breathing troubles. They come and go throughout the years, but it's a part of my bad choices and I realize that the only power I have is to make good choices for my future. You are being given a chance to live and hopefully have a good life with minimal damage if you stop now. Good luck and take this wake up call as your get of jail free card. You might not get another.
61536 tn?1340701763
Hi there.  Palpitations can be scary, even for those of us who are told they're perfectly benign.  My worry about you is that cocaine does stress your heart out.  I'm glad you'll be having the echo, and I hope everything is okay.

As to whether or not they'll stop, the very nature of palpitations seems to be their unpredictability.  Cocaine will not help matters.  Your heart is giving you a warning, hopefully before any irreversible damage, and I hope you'll use this chance to stop using.  Sometimes people just need that scary wake up call.  Sadly, some don't get it in time.  Please, use yours wisely.

Best wishes to you.
Avatar universal
I don't see anywhere that he said he had quit using forever, unfortunately.  Once they get addicted, it is almost impossible to stop permanently.  You don't have to use every day to be addicted, I understand.  To the OP, people have been known to DIE with only one use.  I think you can get a rapid rate and constricted coronaries and can lead to massive heart attack and death.  And I am not kidding.
Avatar universal
Maggie , I am a mind reader. Haven’t you realized yet? ;)

You did quit, right xstalkrx ? I have a fate in you!
370280 tn?1198659481
You said it is almost impossible to stop permanently? I used for a year from age 16 to 17 and never touched it again, that was 20 years ago. You do have to change a great deal of your life like your friends, your life habits and why you started in the first place, so I'm not saying what you say is entirly wrong. It's not an easy process, but I find your sweeping "once an addict always an addict" type statement discouraging for someone who is newly realizing his own mortality.
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