Ok, I am at the end of my rope. I've only posted a couple of times, but now I really need some help from the good people of this board. I have HAD ENOUGH of pvcs ruining my life! A little background - 54, chubby, female, generally sane and happy. Have had pvcs for 17 years, on and off with a few bouts of prolonged suffering. Hospitalized 12 years ago to start on rhythmol (which worked beautifully, but doctor took me off of because he was afraid of it). Tried Verapmil - worked for a few years, now on Metroprolol - sometimes 25 mg per day, sometimes I sneak in an extra half. Sometimes take Kolonopin (I have ailing parents, and a teenage son, a daughter studying abroad, and family members that constantly need financial support). I have a wonderful supportive hubby who I feel sorry for because I am always pvc sick if you know what I mean. Highest daily number is 17K. Pvc free off and on over the years. Had normal stress echo a few weeks ago. Have always had normal tests - ekg, stress, echo, chest x-ray, etc. After a bad bout in July 09, I have been plagued by bigeminy and trigeminy for 18 or so days out of each month since September. I was seeing an EP for the last ten years, who was helpful, but always waiting with the ablation knife, and was not good at helping me manage pvcs. I haven't been emotionally ready for an ablation, but I have been told that my pvcs are unifocal and easily accessible. I decided after much thought to "down grade" to a regular cardiologist, someone locally (my EP was in a major medical school affiliated hospital, difficult to get on the phone, had to wait months for appts, etc.). My new cardiologist is a sweetheart, who also suffers from pvcs and is easy to reach, wonderful staff, and is interested in helping me manage these damn things. I have an appt. with a very, very recommended EP at a major hospital in Boston next month - he is one of the best. I want to get an opinion on an ablation. I didn't fully trust my old EP or the hospital - saw it as a little po-dunk - Boston is an hour and half away. It was a big step for me to switch my care around. I had been with this EP for a long time, but he had me scheduled for an ablation - if I could lose 20 pounds in 1 and half months time! Plus he didn't suggest a new holter monitor (I hadn't had one for over 18 mos) before the surgery. I would have thought he would want to check the location of the source before he did the ablation. I just had to make a new plan, and so far I am happy I did. I also switched my primary doctor because she told my to just live with the pvcs, ablations are horrible, people who get them are crazy, she has patients that have burning chest pain for the rest of their lives from ablations, etc. etc. I now have a sane sensible primary who takes things slow, weighs options, and when the time comes, will help me figure out how to proceed. Sorry this is a lot of information. OK fast forward to the present - I am ready to jump out of my skin. My biggest complaint is that my pvcs have gotten worse in frequency and duration. Also, years ago they would be reduced with exercise, now they INCREASE with exercise, and sometimes I can be pvc free and they kick in after exercise and last for days, weeks - and I can get into bigeminy so easily. So I have stopped exercising - which gives me great joy and has been a big part of my life and helps me maintain my weight - which could be better. I have always seen myself as physically active, but now I don't work out. I'm even afraid to go for a nightly walk with my husband. I went to Europe for 10 days, walked everywhere - was with my husband and daughter - happy, happy, happy - hardly any pvcs. Came home last week and boom, there they are again!!!! I know it could be adrenaline/stress, I have cut out all the triggers - no caffeine, chocolate, weekly martini - three great loves of mine!!! But none of it works. As a matter of fact I had cafe au lait and cafe con leche (double yum) - full caffeine in Europe and it didn't bother me!!!! I guess I am asking for assurance, friendship, commiseration, words of wisdom, opinions, anything to help. I see my cardiologist on Thursday and he wants to talk to me about clean eating (he has a nutritionist on sight) - he offers this because a lot of his cardiac patients who have had heart attacks are seriously overweight - he thinks it might help me even though I am not seriously overweight, or have had a heart attack. I hope I don't sound whiney and I don't sound snobby because I travelled to Europe, etc. I had to see my daughter after so long and my hubby and I share with whoever needs a helping hand if we can. (I just read what I wrote and I thought it sounded "uppity"). I am just an average person trying to have a better life without pvcs. Help before I jump in front of oncoming traffic (just kidding)!
Call me Debbie