So, I went of beta blockers (25 mg metoprolol) one and a half month ago, because I didn't have any fear of heart disease anymore. Big mistake. Three days later, the PACs came back with a vengeance. After some time, I visited my cardiologist and he did an echo (completely normal) and an EKG (also textbook normal). He told me to restart Metoprolol and increase the dose to 50 mg/day, which I did. It didn't have any immediate effect, but two-three days later, the PACs were more or less gone (back to just a few daily). So far, so good.
The problem is, I've gained 20 kgs as a side effect of my anti-anxiety meds, which I'm now fighting very hard to get rid of. A couple of weeks later I decided to start a low carb diet, to lose some more weight before summer season.
I don't really know what happened, but three days later I had a major flare up of PACs. The first day I had maybe 50 of them. Next day 500. The third day, I was going away for the weekend, to my cabin, along with my girlfriend, far from doctors (which made me anxious because I had so much palpitations). I swear, on the way there I had at least 1000 PACs during three hours, some of them in trigeminy and bigeminy. I had no symptoms except for the palpitations and anxiety. On the way there, I stopped at an emergency room, and had an EKG done (which was normal, they observed my EKG for about 15 minutes, I think I had one PAC or so). But the rest of the day, I felt like I was losing my mind. I had thousands of PACs, the only time they went away was when I was jogging (which the doctor encouraged me to do). The PACs appeared non-stop, and worsened with positional changes (like standing, sitting, walking). When going to sleep, they went away.
Next day, I was doing some (fairly heavy) gardening and I felt no PACs. Later that afternoon they came back, but far less than the day before. Next day after that, I only felt a few PACs and for 4 days now, they have stayed away, more or less.
I should mention that I immediately stopped my low carb diet when the PACs were at the worst. I also tried to take some rapidly acting beta blockers (propranolol) which had always been effective in the past. It didn't help.
I keep having this nagging fear that my PACs will return, because 1) I have no idea what really triggered them, and 2) beta blockers did not help. Or rather than fear of PACs (I'm fairly skilled in cardiology so deep down I know they are not dangerous) it's more the fear of fear of PACs, if that made any sense. It's causing so much anxiety, I almost fear losing my mind. I fear that I will never get rid of them, that they will just turn up out of nothing, I fear it will compromise my life quality, fear it will getting me depressed (which never has happened), fear that I will lose my interest in living (which has never happened), etc.
Beta blockers have always been helpful in the past. Why didn't they work this time?
Could the low-carb (and ketosis) trigger PACs? I think my potassium was fine (even though the ER EKG did reveal a slightly longer QT than usual, 415 msec vs 380 which I normally have)
How do you cope with premature beats and the uncertainty they represent?