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Avatar universal

tachycardia (newly diagnosed)

Almost two weeks ago I woke up in the middle of the night with my heart racing at 120 bpm.  My heart rate stayed at this level until I went to the doctor at about 10:00 the next morning.  My doctor prescribed Toprol and it finally brought my heart rate down.  Now I have also visited with a cardiologist who says he suspects that I have inappropriate sinus tachycardia.  I am going to have my thyroid checked, but I was wondering if this is the way people usually find out they have tachycardia?  I felt great until that moment in the middle of the night and now I am looking at taking medicine for the rest of my life.  Are there any other possibilities?  Is there a chance that I won't have to take medication forever?

Thanks,

Shelley
13 Responses
Avatar universal
Dear shelley,

There are many causes of tachycardia (fast heart beat).  They can roughly be divided into those coming from the top chambers (supraventricular tachycardias or SVTs) and those coming from the bottom chambers (ventricular tachycardias or VT).  Inappropriate sinus tachycardia (IST) is a type of SVT.  The diagnosis can only be made after "appropriate" causes of fast heart beats such as elevated thyroid have been excluded.  IST is more common in young women and sometimes requires medical therapy.  Beta-blockers are the most common drug used. Drug therapy is not necessarily life-long.  In very severe cases a procedure known as an ablation may be used to 'modify' the sinus node.

Tachycardias usually have an 'index' case where the person first notices it.  These are often at night because the individual is more aware of their heart-beat at this time.
Avatar universal
My problems started the exact same way. One day in 1993 my heart one day in the morning started racing just like yours, for no reason. From that day it did the same thing everyday, especially in the a.m. I lived with it for a couple of years with out ever seeing a doctor. Then I started feeling like a flutter or an extra beat or something. It's like you feel it but then it's gone. Then the next thing I felt which scared the hek out of me, was a slight flutter then my heart beats slow, then I cough or do something with a quick motion, and it goes from a slow rate to a fast rate, then back to normal. I still didnt see a doctor, then one day in Feb. 1998 my heart this day raced all day, and never slowed down, like it usually does. That night I went to the E.R. and had a cardiogram and told it was inappropiate sinus tachcardia, also they did blood work to check my thyroid. Finally saw a cardiologist, and had echo cardiogram, and different monitors, and told my heart is fine, but still have all these symptons. He put me on Toprol, my dosage is now 100mg. a day. This stuff has helped so much. I still have these symptons, but at a much less severity. But I'm like yourself am wondering if I have to be on this for the rest of my life? Or is there a procedure that can cure my arrythmias. As long as the Toprol does help to a point, I know it's not a cure, and it wont hurt me to be on it for a long period of time, then I don't mine staying on the med. I was 33 when all this started in 1993. Also I noticed around that time of the month symptons can come about more.
Avatar universal
I forgot to say that I am 34 years old, and the time of month does seem to make a difference to me, too.  I didn't ask about long term effects of the Toprol.  I am taking 50mg right now and it is working so far.  Is it dangerous to take a beta blocker for a long time?

Shelley
Avatar universal
This sounds like what I am going through, I have been rushed to the hospital 2 times with a rapid heart beat, my blood pressure is around 175/118, heart rate is 130 and I have a tightness in my chest. This will wake me out of a dead sleep or will happen when I am very relaxed and still. I can always tell when it is going to happen my palms will feel damp. Mine usualy last anywhere from 1 to 10 mins. I have seen several doctors and had a angiogram done and no one can give me an answer. They have me on Toprol 50mg XL also. It helped for a couple weeks but now it back to the same ole thing. When this happens to others, does it typicaly raise your blood pressure? Is there any other info you can give me as far as other symtoms or treatmeant. I have an appointment with a third cardiologist next week to see what he thinks.
Avatar universal
I too suffered from inappropriate sinus tach.  My rate averaged 120 - 150 24 hrs. a day.  Eventually it was suggested that I have an ablation of my sinus node.  Now I have a pacemaker and several more serious arrythmias with much more heavy duty antiarrythmic medications.  All I can say is if your doctors do not think your in danger of anything bad, try to stick with the beta-blockers.  The other alternative is far less appealing.
Avatar universal
I have the same thing happening to me, and my dr. thinks it is all being caused by stress.  I suffer from panic attacks, and for awhile, they occurred like clockwork between 7-8 pm and lasted for several hrs.

Kristy
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