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Avatar universal

autoimmune disorder and tachycardia. My new theory

So, all you experts and fellow rhythm sufferers....I have a new theory and wanted to bounce it off of you all before I try it with the doctor who will probably look at me like I have 2 heads.  
11 years ago I had a bout of a rheumatic fever like thingy.  (didn't technically diagnose that since heart or face rash wasn't involved.  But it was a post strep major flair up of arthritis, daily complex migraines, really horrible).  Anyway, I had so many blood tests etc. with all doctors telling me that my migraines (complete with the aura, light sensitivity and vomiting) weren't related to the migratory arthritis that invaded my 31 year old healthy body.  Of course, I only had ever had one migraine at 12 and not a single one until this.  But they weren't related.  Yeah right.  At least the neurologist said that they must be but that they just didn't know why.  So, after finally calling one morning when I couldn't put one pound of weight on my feet due to the arthritis flair, they put me on a dose pack of steroids.  4 hours later I was out shopping!  ( I had to. I was getting remarried in a week).  Haven't had arthritis nor a migraine since.  hmmm.   So, last year I had a hysterectomy (left ovaries) and that is when all the heart stuff started.  Hormone levels are fine so don't think that's necessarily it.  We have tried 1 ablation that was unsuccessful and a whole host of drugs.  I was on norpace most recently and it didn't work and caused ridiculous muscle fatigue, so... so much for that one.  My PCP (whom I had to see about the muscle thing since doctors apparently think all things are unrelated) decided to really think about all of this.  During the ablation, they sedated the heck out of me and couldn't induce the arrhythmia.  Since I am tachy all day, every day, that was odd and I just thought the sedation did it. My mother (the old school RN) said that maybe they should sedate you.  So, now my new med this week is Xanax.  LOL  Other than a headache, the heart issues remain, unfortunately (but on xanax, who cares!  LOL).  PCP was talking about a steroid for the muscle weakness until he read in the fine print that norpace can cause some muscle issues.  That got me thinking that maybe, just maybe this whole thing is a flair up of some sort of autoimmune disorder.  I have always had some odd symtoms like an arm that goes numb, numbness in my knee here and there, and some other stuff.  I have had tests for MS more than once.  I don't think it's that but maybe some other type.  I feel like the surgery was a major assault on my body and just sort of turned on the switch to have my body attack me.  Perhaps doing a week of steroids might help.  

So, (sorry this is so long) if I bring this up, are they just going to increase my xanax and confirm I am just crazy?  I am so frustrated at this point that I am ready to just live with it.  The problem is the dizzyness and syncope that accompany it makes it a little difficult.  But in a weird way, I am totally used to it.  I can talk through a heavy dizzy spell even.  So, first of all, thanks for reading this far.  Virtual brownies to you.  :)  Secondly, thoughts?  
6 Responses
Avatar universal
You are not crazy, there is an autoimmune disease out there that could be a possibility for you.  Look into sarcoidosis, I have the cardiac version.  It can attack any body part, it mostly is a lung disease but not everyone has that.  I have no lung involvement.  I am also taking prednisone to try and rid my heart of granulomas from the disease.  It is not easy finding doctors that know much about this disease, esp if you don't have the lung version.  I also don't know if you could possibly have lupus, that is another autoimmune disease, not sure how if presents with the heart, but definitely sarcoid will cause rhythm problems, I currently have an AICD and take a host of heart meds for this condition.  I believe the only real way of determining if you have this is with a heart biopsy which is invasive.  Good luck in your quest of a DX, it can be hell to get one.

263988 tn?1281957896
You're definitely not crazy.

I've been doing my own research into the common links between Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease which I have, and Perimyocardits with Pericardial Effusion and A Fib, which I also have. I found several links already and am looking for more.

My suggestion is to do some research on the web using the words:


I found one excellent article in Rheumatology, the Oxford Journals entitled "Cardiac arrhythmias and conduction disturbances in autoimmune rheumatice diseases." Then I would print off the articles and information you find and bring it with you to your doctor's office.
189238 tn?1208730919
Definatley on the right track through everything that hubby Stu has gone through the cardiologists, docs and natropath have said that there must have been a trigger for what has happened to his heart. He suffered rheumatic fever as a child with no damage to the heart detected at the time lol 30 year ago though, has had a virus 10 years ago that made him very, very sick for almost 2 months and Hep A about 25 years ago  as well. When we were searching for answers we were told that he is probably suffering from some auto immune disease but who knows. More questions than answers. He was struggling with dizziness although has been doing the breath holding thing and mediatation to help as well as regular rest times and absolutly zero stress where possible.
61536 tn?1340701763
Many autoimmune conditions involve heart palpitations.  Has anyone suggested *ducks* Fibromyalgia?  That's basically what they diagnose when someone has symptoms as you're describing and they cannot find a cause.  They said I have it.  I continue looking for a cause though.  My problems came after a severe acute Cytomegalovirus infection (think mono) back in 2001.  I've never felt right since.  Viruses can trigger autoimmune processes in the body.  Sounds like this happened to you.

My father and I both suffer from autoimmune conditions and migraine.  I think a lot of the autoimmune process is still not well-understood.  I keep looking forward to advancements.  My personal hypothesis on "fibromyalgia" is that there is a cluter of yet to be identified autoimmune processes that somewhat resemble each other, and since they're yet unnamed, they call them Fibromyalgia.  So I believe people are sick, and the symptoms are very real, but I don't necessarily think Fibro is a thing by itself.

Okay enough rambling ;)
Avatar universal
I have had really weird symptoms since I had a three-level lower lumbar spinal fusion. I get dizzy and have chronic fatigue. I also have fibromyalgia and diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the spine. I work in the medical field doing cardiovascular ultrasounds. I was ...am always getting or feeling sick. My hands go numb at night and are also inflamed when I wake up. I have been having palpitations and episodes of tachycardia. I saw a cardiologist and he said was probably hormone induced and I may have an extra spit in AV node which is a part of the electrical conduction of your heart. BUT... I forgot to tell him that I went to an IFD doctor because of always feeling so sick and fatigued, she found many IG factors missing in my blood work and diagnosed me with a CID. Congenital immune deficiency disease. I also stated having severe migraine attacks about 12 years ago. When I was young-21, I was in the hospital and diagnosed with coronary artery spasms. I just quit drinking caffeine and stopped taking nasal decongestants and I was fine and health until 12 yrs. ago when I started having all of the aforementioned problems. My joints often ache also. I think it may be attributed to having CIDD. It took over 14 doctors to test for CIDD. I never new I had it until last fall. The doctor wants me to get immunoglobulins infused into my blood. I wonder if that would help all of the other strange symptoms or if they are linked. I go see her next week; so I will keep you posted. Any feed back ...PLEASE! Thank you! Good luck!
Avatar universal
Hi, there,

I think your theory is valid.  I don't have an autoimmune disorder ... yet.  I have a neurological disorder, and the smooth muscle in my intestine is affected.  Hence, in the last 8 weeks, I've had 3 viruses.  I started to become tachycardic as i was recovering from the 2nd virus and segwaying into the 3rd, which happened to be the flu.  I thought the tachycardia was related to my neuromuscular disorder, but none of my normal remedies would work.  The pain in my ears, nose, throat prompted me to go first to my primary, who because she didn't see evidence of a 2ndary bacterial infection, sent me on my way even though my membranes felt as if someone had used sandpaper on them.  I went home exhausted from the virus' effect around 4:30 PM and woke at midnight in great pain, my face, ears, throat vibrating with pain.  Next dayI saw and otolaryngologist, who prescribed a steroid called methylprednisolone.  I took it and the tachycardia stopped, the intense pain called, hyperalgesia, didn't go away, but quieted.  I was glad the good doctor also prescribed 5 mg of oxycodone for that.  Seems after 3 viruses my immune system's responses, which didn't really exist with my GI issues, was ramped up out of proportion.  I'm so used to fever being the only immune response, that it never occurred to me that tachycardia, heightened pain, anorexia were are also immune responses related to the viral and not the bacterial.  Check out http://endo.endojournals.org/content/152/6/2400.full.  

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