I have been battling for months and I just want an answer and to be normal again!
Since January this year I have had a rapid heart rate (all the time, about 90 bpm) and usually every day I have an episode where it increaes to about 110-120bpm.
I aslo have feelings of being short of breath or not being able to get enough air. Sometimes this happens with or without the sudden increase in heart rate.
Occassionally I have palpitations for about 10 seconds.
Occassionally my arms/hands feel weak and shakey.
After a few weeks of it starting I went to my doctor, she said try cutting down caffeine. I personally didn't think it was anything to do with caffeine but I gave it a try. Stuck to it 100%. No difference.
I didn't get round to going back cos I started a new job and at the time it didn't worry me too much
In May/June my mum noticed I looked thin. I hadn't weighed myself in a long time, so I don't know if the weight loss was sudden or gradual. I weighed myself then, and was 7stone 2. I am 5ft 2 and normally weight 7 and a half stone. I have a naturally slim figure so it was a normal weight (many people said 7 and a half was too thin but my doctor said it wasn't for my build, height, etc).
So I'd lost 5 pounds and it was showing. Didn't really do much at the time as in mid June I went on holiday for 2 weeks. Looked thinner when I got back, weighed myself again, was 6 stone 13!!!
Eventually went to the doctor about it and they said it sounded like hyperthyroidism, which is what I thought (one of my cats has it and she had the same symptoms!). Had blood test for it, results came back fine, bang in the middle. So then had more blood tests done: full blood count, ESR, electrolytes, creatinine and urea, liver function, kidney etc etc.
All came back fine, although my potassium levels showed as being slightly low, but she didn't tell me the numbers so I dont know how low...but obviously it's not dangerously low because that would be a medical emergency!
Also had an ECG but all it showed was that my heart rate was too fast, so gotta keep a diary of when it speeds up, if there's any cause, and depending on results I may have to have a 24hr or 7 day ECG.
It isn't any medication or anything. I did experience a pretty horrible event (and to me personally it was quite traumatic as it involved a phobia I have) but that was at the end of February, and the increased heart rate/shortness of breath started in January, 100% certain, got it written in my diary and everything. So it isn't anxiety/panic related. It hasn't changed at all since the traumatic event actually.
I have heard that anxiety etc can cause eating issues and decreased appetite, which would obviously lead to weight loss, but my appetite didn't change at all this year and nor has my eating habits.
I have noticed that what seems to trigger these episodes where my heart races is when I get excited, nervous, etc. But only slightly. It will be the silliest, slightest little happy/excited thought and it will set it off. I never used to be like this.
Again, I am constantly being told it's the affect of caffeine or stimulants...but I have been off caffeine for months with no change, and my blood pressure isn't high. And drinking caffeine doesn't affect it either.
And you know I said the heart rate/shortness of breath issues started in January? Well they seemed to start on the day/day after (can't quite remember) I fainted on the tube in London? Could this mean anything?
Does anyone know what could be causing all of this?
What could cause your heart rate to "over-react" to emotions/feelings? Or is it adrenalin or my fight or flight response being triggered too easily? Does such a thing exist?
Also would an increased heart rate affect metabolism? Could that be why I lost weight?
I know low potassium can affect heart rhythms, but could it affect metabolism/the ability to put on weight/the ability to take in calories?
And why, please someone answer this cos my doctor never does...why did it start since fainting? It seems too much of a coincidence!
Thank you for reading and for it being such a long question! Help is greatly appreciated! =)