Beta blockers slow down the electrical conduction (I believe) in the heart causing a lower heart rate and blood pressure. Thus BB are normally prescribed for people with high HR and/or BP, but not for emotional issues. In fact BB can make one physically tired and this I think would then to make one more depressed if that is where they were headed without the BB.
I do not see a direct connection between heart rhythm problems/symptoms and the emotional (as I read your post) difficulties.
You may get some help by posting on the Personality Disorder Community.
It sounds like your daughter may be Bi-Polar. What you are describing is not heart related. Usually mental issues due to heart disease are in cognitive areas. For example, my daughter had a very severe form of cardiomyopathy, diagnosed at the age of 6yrs. At the age of 4 she had a photographic memory, it was incredible. At 6 she took 150 math question test in which she made 3 mistakes. This test was in addition, subtraction mutiplication, division and basic algebra. Two of the three mistakes she made, she made due to the 'signs' associated with the problem; a 'times' sign she added instead of multiplying, a division sign she subtracted instead of dividing (both of those answers would have been correct had they actually been the sign she was thinking it was) The third problem, no one could figure out what she was doing. Two years later, she was failing math! She was having a hard time remembering things. After her heart transplant, she told me her mind was coming back, she actually knew the difference. When she was 10, she had an occipital stroke and had a group of test done. Her IQ had dropped 20 points when she was tested. A few years ago they retested her and her IQ level is now at genius; it's gone back up. The reason for all of that is because of a lack of blood flow to the brain; before she didn't have it, now she does. What you are describing isn't heart related, your daughter is having behavioural problems and should probably be seeing someone to help her through her issues. One of my best friends is going through, almost a carbon copy, the same things you are describing, her daughter doesn't have heart disease, she's Bi-Polar.
Thanks for your comments and ideas. What I didn't say, and maybe should have, is that she gets jittery with the heart rate when it's higher and it beats at around 120 beats per minute when she's resting. She finds she can't concentrate and looks pale sometimes. I'm concerned that this can't be just mood swings. The doctor gave her beta blockers for the heart, as I understand it, but my daughter doesn't seem to know whether he prescribed them because he thinks the higher heart rate is due to anxiety or because he thinks there is a genuine problem with the rhythm. He has done a brief ECG but that's all. Should this be investigated further? I don't feel the doctor is concerned enough about this to refer her to a specialist. I know my daughter though and I can see the dramatic changes in energy and behaviour which seem to happen very suddenly. As I understand it, bi-polar swings are not usually so frequent and so sudden.
was it Inderal (generic name Propranolol)?
Inderal, has been shown to be very effective in the treatment of performance "anxiety" Some performers and musicians use it to reduce the autonomic nervous system arousal BUT other bb's on a regular basis can cause depression.
check out the heart disease expert forums and mental health expert forums for Inderal/Propranolol
bah...typo...the word other should not be in here - it should say but, bb's on a regular basis can cause depression
Thanks, I have heard of Propanalol and I'm not sure which one she's taking. I know it is sometimes prescribed for anxiety but the heart rate problem seems to be there a lot of the time unless she's taking medication. It races when she doesn't seem anxious so I'm not at all convinced it's anything to do with anxiety, more that any anxiety is a result of feeling jittery because her heart is going faster.
I have a friend who's son has had behaviour issues in the past like what you are describing your daughter is having. He'd say he didn't remember things he'd done and that he'd felt wierd, like being in a bubble or on the outside looking in at what he was doing. All his childhood he was considered a troubled child, put on all kinds of meds and counseling and then, when he was around 20 or so, he all of a sudden started having grand mal seizures. He is now 26 and they can't control the seizures and no one really knows what is causing them. They are saying that it's epilepsy but it really doesn't fit the normal types of epilepsy according to his doctors. What you described on your daughter sounds the same as he acted when he was a teenager. I hope you find an answer.