Aa
A
A
A
Close
Heart Rhythm Community
12.1k Members
Avatar universal

Ways to cope or deal with PSVT

Hello!

I am 20 years old. I was diagnosed with PSVT back when I was 17 but I had only had 3 episodes back then. It didn't occur for a few years until recently in October when I had my episode but it had lasted longer this time around. It lasted for 10 mins and it started to occur more frequently and became worse. My doctor put me on atenerol and metoprolol but these medications made me feel very weak and tired and my anxiety was very bad at night that I would wake up every hour because I was scared and I would sweat. He finally put me on a medication that I can tolerate which is propranolol. It was working good but my anxiety was still the same. I constantly feared I would die and what I would black out or pass out during my attacks. Idk why i keep worrying or getting scared. My EKG's and X-rays come out normal every time I have to go to the ER cause of my PSVT episodes. It seems to help me when I hear the stories of others that experience the same as me and ways that they cope with it. Last night I had my first episode at night every since I was on propranolol. I'm currently still waiting for my referral to see my cardiologist. If anyone can help me and tell me ways that I can cope with it and can reduce the episodes and any triggers that will be greatly appreciated! If anyone has any questions I will gladly answer them.
Thank you!
4 Responses
Avatar universal
First, you aren't going to die.  SVT is very scary, but it isn't fatal.  I have had it periodically since I was in my 20s, I am 60 now and I'm still here.  Stress is one of the main triggers, so try to calm down if you can.  Take deep breaths and try to relax your muscles when you are lying there at night.  It will help relax you.  Keep busy during the day with things that keep your mind on something other than how your heart is beating.    I sometimes can stop an episode before it really gets going by holding my breath and bearing down real hard like I'm trying to go to the bathroom.  That works well for a lot of people.Hang in there until you can get to the cardiologist. You will not die.  
1423357 tn?1511089042
There are a couple of things you can try to convert them to normal rhythm.
1) Valsalva.  Sit on a step so your knees are brought up towards your chest.  Take a shallow breath and bear down.  Tense you stomach muscles keeping the force up high rather than down towards your bowels.  Hold it for no longer than a few seconds.  It's the initial rise in pressure that causes the conversion, not the duration that you hold you breath.  Relax.  If you still feel it, repeat.

2) Head stands.  Don't ask me why, but several people here report great success with head stands again a wall.

3) Ice water face plant.  Use a large bowl filled with ice water.  Insert just your face, not your entire head.


I had the AVRT type of SVT all of my life, from 6 to 60, 54 years.  I learned after the first episode how to convert them, and never had to go to the ER; literally hundreds and hundreds of episodes.  I had the self sustaining variety that would not spontaneously convert on their own, but would run on for hours if left to do so.

Many find that as they age, episodes become more frequent.  Mine had become as many as 3 to 5 times per month.  If you get several episodes a month, I'd look into an electrophysiology procedure. I had one 4 years ago, and it eliminated them for good.
1464004 tn?1384139333
I've been dealing with the same for many years now and all I have to say is I agree with the other posters. First, it will not kill you. Second, if it gets really bad and they become very frequent you can look into an ablation..
Avatar universal
I have had 8 episodes of SVT/Afib/Aflutter since 2006. I was converted at the hospital on the first 6, with a Cardizem injection the first 2 times with immediate conversion, then a Cardizem drip the next 4 times taking about 12 hours each. The last 2 converted at home in about an hour with a 600mg dose of propafenone (pill in the pocket). I tries Valsalva and ice water to no avail, mine are sustained and do not convert without chemical intervention. I consider them to be an inconvenience and certainly not life threatening unless allowed to continue for days (weeks?,months?). An ablation may be in my future if they become too frequent.
Have an Answer?
Top Arrhythmias Answerers
1807132 tn?1318747197
Chicago, IL
1423357 tn?1511089042
Central, MA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Are there grounds to recommend coffee consumption? Recent studies perk interest.
Salt in food can hurt your heart.
Get answers to your top questions about this common — but scary — symptom
How to know when chest pain may be a sign of something else
A list of national and international resources and hotlines to help connect you to needed health and medical services.
Here’s how your baby’s growing in your body each week.