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Thread: skipped heartbeats

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19goog75

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/3/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 3, 2007 6:41 AM   in response to: fabianoristow in response to: fabianoristow
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I recently lost 18 kgs to improve my health & thought losing weight would help with my skipping beats. But since my weight loss, whenever i exercise (just walking!) my heart goes crazy with multiple missed beats, I feel like i'm not getting enough air, & slightly dizzy. this happens everytime i exercise. So I panic try to calm myself down & everythings fine again. I still have a fair bit of weight to lose & this is worrying me, cuz i need to exercise to lose the weight! I'm 31, female & am on low dosage beta blockers.

Pamelaelise

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/3/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 3, 2007 1:31 PM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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Hi,
I have been having two kinds of skipping hearts beats, (it showed up on my test) and it scares me. I take med's... but i will be sitting and it feels life my heart hits my chest right in the middle, two years ago I woke up in the middle of the night and I was choking and I couldn't take a breath, the next time I saw my heart Dr he said my ekg had changed little, I get that feeling in my chest a lot and I don't like it.

Pamelaelise

RhondaMarie65

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/4/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 4, 2007 9:51 PM   in response to: Pamelaelise in response to: Pamelaelise
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I am a 59-year-old female, who is under a great deal of stress at the moment, but I have had the same symptoms most of you mention since I was 29! Until today, when the missed beats (extras) are coming every 5-10 beats, I have had this under control for many years. It was the sudden onset of severe missed beats today that brought me here.

I have read every post here, and want to share my experience. I think it may help some of you in ways that have not yet been mentioned.

Let me start by saying that I have been the same route as most of you, with stress tests, EKG's, Echos, wearing the Holter monitor for 24-hours, wearing the King-of-Hearts monitor for two weeks and phoning in the episodes, ER visits, etc. Like most of you, I was told everything from PMV (prolapsed mitral valve) which I am sure I do NOT have, to "it is all in your head" and everything in between.

Like most of you, I know it is real--you can take your pulse and feel the pause; you can feel the thud in your chest when the heat beats harder to regulate each time; you can sense the change in rhythm and breathing.

Also like many of you, I was also subject to panic attacks, always related to not being able to breathe. I am happy to say I pretty much have them under control, and through watching caffeine intake, not smoking or drinking, and trying to not overeat, I have lessened the heart episodes greatly. I can go weeks sometimes with just one or two little "blips" now and then. Even though on days like today, I can still be scared silly (Is this the real thing this time????), I tend to think it is not going to kill me since I have lived with it in varying degrees for 30 years!

EVERY doctor and specialist I saw all told me what I had was non-life threatening. Yes, we all agree that is easy for them to say, but for most of us, I think they are right. You should always ease your own concerns though, with a second or third opinion or going to the ER if really in doubt. Even those of us with nothing "serious" wrong can end up having a heart attack eventually.

I was "fortunate" (if indeed I can use that term), in that a close friend (she is also a nurse) started having the same thing with the same "nothing seriously wrong" diagnosis shortly after me, so we compared notes over the years. About the only difference between us was that I was put on Inderal at age 30 and she would get so worried over her erratic heartbeat that she would pass out!! (I got light-headed from hyperventilating since there is a fine line between that and deep breathing, but never passed out.)

The real breakthrough came for both of us after she finally went to a psychiatrist with her medical chart in hand and said "I need to be on something to decrease the anxiety," and after reading her history, gave her this VERY wise advice. He said "The next time you get the feeling that your heart is missing beats, instead of running home from the grocery store in fear that you will pass out there, or that you are having a heart attack, or even that you might be having a panic attack too . . . BRING IT ON!!" He told her to just stop still and say to herself "Okay, do your worst! Really screw up heart! Really make me wonder if I am dying! Make me pass out again!" He told her that will usually halt EVERY panic attack instantly and will often stop the missed/erratic heartbeats. He was right! Worked for her, worked for me!

I also must say that after ten years, I weaned myself off the Inderal without telling my GP as it was my opinion that it was making the paroxysmal tachycardia worse! I have had fewer and less severe episodes since then, so I guess I was right! Inderal and some other beta-blockers can actually make it worse--read the insert that comes with the prescription!

Now I want to tell you a few things that I have found out in the past 30 years of comparing notes with others with like symptoms. Some have not been mentioned before. Triggers include: laying on your left side; wearing something too tight around the waist or chest; eating foods which can cause gas, or acid reflux (including decaf coffees which still have acid!); eating too close to bedtime; overeating; caffeine (including in chocolate); alcohol; rocking in a chair or glider (the rhythm of the movement seems to disrupt the normal heart rhythm); doing something too quickly; a lot of bending or even squatting; sitting for long periods of inactivity (trips, etc.); and working fast and furiously.

Interestingly, most of us do not even have the palpitations and irregularities when doing this heavy, fast work, but rather when we then sit to relax after!! This is something that baffles most of us because we have all heard of the person keeling over dead while shoveling snow! But, WE had nothing when working hard and then five minutes after we sit down *WHAM* it starts skipping beats! No wonder we are confused!

I can tell you that there have been times I was doing things years ago, like making my daughter's bed, when it was so bad I was afraid I would pass out and I simply would say "Go ahead, let me pass out! In fact, let me die right here." Many times, it would pass just then, like my mind did have a fair amount of control over it, even though it WAS a physiological, not psychological problem!! Trust me, it is all related to some degree.

Over time, you will get to know what triggers your episodes, if they are of the "benign" type, as we all pray we have been correctly diagnosed! Once you know that, you can alter your lifestyle to help keep you fairly free of the problem.

One last thing (sorry for the length of this): One of the cardiologists told me that when I have the more noticeable ones, I can do the following: Cough three times. If that does not help, make a fist and strike yourself in the chest once or twice. You do not have to do this hard, just enough to jolt your heart into a normal rhythm again--certainly do not cause pain. This is the one that almost always works for me! But, if that does not work, and you feel that the heartbeat is so erratic or fast that you might pass out, grab a bowl of cold water, throw a handful of ice in it, and plunge your face into it! Silly as it sounds, the "shock" of this will stop your heart for a second (as it would do to anyone doing that!) and that the heart will usually convert back to a normal rhythm once it starts again.

Now, keep in mind that these things work unless it is caused by acid indigestion. In that case, you must relieve the indigestion to make it stop and usually a mouthful of Gaviscon foam (the ER says to chew up four all at once--talk about "foaming at the mouth!") will do the trick.

In the case of going to bed feeling fine and waking up with the irregular heartbeat, sometimes the ONLY thing that will stop mine is to sit up in bed real fast, or jump out of bed fast. Again, it is the change in movement which gives the heart a jar to let it then reestablish a normal rhythm.

In closing, I again reiterate what many have said . . . "When in doubt--get thee to a doctor" but if you are pretty much convinced that it is "nothing life threatening," use these guidelines and helps to get you through.

Good luck to everyone of you, and a special prayer for the man who is dealing with the stress of his wife's metastatic cancer.

Let's all think positive thoughts and hope we die at age 110 from nothing to do with our hearts. And between now and then??? Well to quote someone named Betty Smith . . . Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first time or last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory.

God bless!

--Rhonda

Valerie50

Posts: 2
Registered: 5/7/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 7, 2007 11:28 PM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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I have had skipped beats since I was 24. I also had panic attacks daily. I haven't had a panic attack in years-I've been on the verge of one but somehow didn't let them escalate. I was so happy -I was doing things I hadn't done in years. Then about 10 yrs ago, I started with the skips that come every 5, 10 20 beats. Scared me to death. The Dr. told me that sometimes its from the stomach and stress. He put me on Prilosec and it stopped. I also take Klonopin for anxiety. My husband died suddenly last May of a heart attack-and he never had one symptom. Now that May 30th is so near, I'm more of a wreck than ever. I miss him so much. I'm 50 now and have 5 children. We were married 30 years. At times I've wished I would die except my youngest child is 6. So I made it through the first year and today was a horror. I started with the skipped beats again. About every 20 beats. I haven't had the constant skips since thelast bout years ago. I can't take it-I have enough stress in my life. BUT- I felt so much better after finding this thread. I may even be able to sleep tonight. My drs. have always said I had PMV, but the dr. I have now thinks its all stress. I just had a physical last week and had a nuclear stress test last Aug. All was fine. My heart even did one skip during my ekg last week and the dr didnt even mention it. I didn't either since I'm used to a few skips a day. But now this again!!!! Its so frightening even when they say it won't hurt us. I'mso scared I will leave my 6 yr old parentless. Maybe its the stress of the anniversay of his death since it doesn't feel like a year--I just don't know. All I do know is that Ican't go through this again. especially without him--he used to calm me down. I'm sorry for going on and on but since I've started typing, its actually gotten better. Anyway- I'm so glad I found this. I won't feel so alone.

Valerie50

Posts: 2
Registered: 5/7/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 7, 2007 11:31 PM   in response to: RhondaMarie65 in response to: RhondaMarie65
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Rhonda--sounds like we are in the same boat today--hoping our day tomorrow is better!

Sharon12065

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/11/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 11, 2007 1:57 PM   in response to: RhondaMarie65 in response to: RhondaMarie65
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Rhonda,

Wow, you really hit the nail on the head. I've had heart palpitations for over 15 years and some days are far worse than other days. I often wonder why or what brings on the skipped heartbeats. I am normally a nervous person with a lot of stress so one day doesn't seem any different to me than others but for reasons I cannot explain, one day my heart is giving me trouble and the next day it's fine. I've eliminated ALL caffeine out of my diet, try to manage my stress better, don't push myself too much, etc. but I'll still have attacks from time to time. Some days the heart skips all day long and I can't get them to let up. It literally ruins my day. You had mentioned some reasons as to what might bring the skipped beats on and I too have noticed that whenever I bend over, rock in my glider, start moving around after sitting for a long period of time, etc. that this will bring on the episodes of my heart skipping. It always worries me and I've had tests done that all show nothing is wrong but it's annoying and frustrating to experinece nonetheless. Thank you for your thoughts, information and tips....it made me feel so much better.

janie87

Posts: 5
Registered: 3/21/06
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 13, 2007 7:54 PM   in response to: KrisL in response to: KrisL
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i have suffered from the internal shaking--it is basically having a sort of panic attack in which instead of shaking where someone can tell, you have a shaking feeling almost like you are chilled but it doesnt show--it is the strangest feeling

angeleyesm

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/14/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 14, 2007 7:08 AM   in response to: ljogg in response to: ljogg
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I just started that supplement over 2 weeks ago and just started some having pvcs that are not normal to me . They seem to be like 2 or 3 in a row and I feel them in my stomache . I was diagnoised with pvcs and do not get them too often . I started to think it was that supplement also .

reccabec

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/16/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 16, 2007 7:07 PM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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Wow...and I thought no one else in the world knew how I felt...it is nice to hear I am not crazy...I am 34 and these episodes make me crazy...they have gotten worse in the last 2 years...but my life is a bit on the stressful side...

reeddb

Posts: 1
Registered: 5/17/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: May 17, 2007 11:24 AM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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I have had these for 20 years and I have not noticed anyone here saying to stay away from MSG. It is in everyhthing. I can eat a good dose of MSG in something and exactly 22 hours later, like clockwork, my heart palpitates like crazy. Sausage sets it off even quicker. Hot chocolate has a substance called sodium casienate and in 20 minutes of drinking it my heart goes crazy. Swiss Miss is the only brand that so far that doesn't have it. Autolyzed yeast is another thing to watch out for. I have learned over the years by my own experience about these flavor enhancers but no-one in the medical field will tell You unless You bring it up, and then they are like, "Yeah that's probably it, stay away from it" Why they don't look into this I don't know, I guess there isn't much of research done into it. Do a little test on your own and see if it helps. I hope it does. It's made a lot of my PVC runs stop.

Damian22

Posts: 1
Registered: 6/10/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: Jun 11, 2007 12:18 AM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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Hi, I am a 26 yr. old male and have experienced dropped heartbeats for a little over a year and a half now. When I first started getting them it worried me. Made a few visits to the emergency ward. Kept thinking there was something wrong with my heart. They did every test imagineable and always came back with a " nothing is wrong with you reply" Naturally the more i worried about it the worse it got. About 2 months into it I started suffering from depression too. Then my doctor put me on a ceratonin reuptake medication ( Lexapro) for 6 months. By the time I had finished my medication I had no dropped or skipped beats. But after going off the medication symptoms returned. I stay away from caffeine, foods hi in sugar and drink plenty of water but still get symptoms. I believe there is nothing physically wrong with my heart. I strongly believe its more to do with the brain and stress. Because the brain controls the nervous sytem which controls your heart beat. Ever since I was little I was a worrier. I always worried about minor things like showing up to work or events in time. Worrying about money and relationships etc. I think it's more to do with who we are and how we react to everyday problems. Because everyone is different.Some people can handle stress more than others. Having a therapist can help altho they can be expensive. Eating the right foods and drinking plenty of water, staying away from the bad foods and excercising is not a guaranteed cure for most but It all helps. I put It all down to lifestyle and the rat race we live in. Being positive and controling your thoughts, doing plenty of research and talking about it helps too, oh and take all your holidays every year from work. Put some "me" time aside for yourself, get a professional massues too. Your body is telling you your worrying too much.

blueydsalr

Posts: 1
Registered: 6/11/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: Jun 11, 2007 4:52 PM   in response to: Damian22 in response to: Damian22
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I am 43 yro male. Ive had palpitations since I was 10 years old. My heart would go from a normal 80-90 beats up to appr. 180. I was still extremely active (4 sports \ year thru high school and 2 yrs college.). I learned to make it stop by lying on my back and pulling my knees to my chest. (Have learned other techniques since.)Most always went away in a few seconds. And I could get up and run like nothing ever happened. As I got older late 30s early 40s, they began lasting longer, sometimes 15 - 20 min. Last year I had 2 episodes that lasted almost 2 hours. On the third episode, my sister raced me to emergency room where I was given "ideno cart shot?" after 4hours of 180 bpm.They immediately diagnosed me with SVT (Supra Ventricular Tachycarda. Between 33 and 37 yro I had been to dozens of doctors who could never diagnose this, other than to say "must be stress, take an anti anxiety med etc,". Which I flatly refused.
I was recommended to a brilliant cardiologist. Dr. Beourganelli - Cardiology Consultants - Sacred Heart Hospital - Pensacola.He performed a cardo "ablasion ?". (Simple procedure, costly$, minimally invasive = two small holes for cath at groin area, 45 min. in surgery room,. stay overnight for observation, left next morning. It has been 1 1/2 years ago and I have not had one SVT event. I do however, still have the premature / skipped heartbeats on rare occasion. They can cause some anxiety. I have tried to just relax, get plenty of rest, eat smaller meals (as large meals seem to aggravate symptoms), very little caffeine, some beer - wine (actually makes me feel better) - (not a recommendation for anyone else). I have read that the feeling of the heartbeat disrhythmia can sometimes be confused with and caused by acid reflux - esophogal disease - gastridis - indegestion, and intensified by those with enlarged heart. I hope some of this helps. I know the aggravation of these symptoms. I think the previous posts that referenced -"relax, it hasn't stopped you yet" has some merit. I know it's tough, but it does help me. Good Luck And Best Wishes for Perfect Health to All. Tg

mattexon

Posts: 4
Registered: 6/13/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: Jun 13, 2007 10:59 AM   in response to: Malibu07 in response to: Malibu07
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It always happens to me in the pm but what do ya know, it's actually happening right now. I haven't even had breakfast yet. Yesterday I downed a bunch of chocolate and about 1-2 hours later it hit me pretty good. It lasted for about 2 hours until I got on the couch on my side and it all disappeared. Have you ever tried that?

aviator74

Posts: 3
Registered: 6/14/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: Jun 14, 2007 1:56 AM   in response to: janie87 in response to: janie87
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Dear 37 y/o woman - this also happens to me - I am a 33 y/o male and every so often my heart seems to skip a beat and it takes my breath away. I went to a leading Dr. and had a doppler, CT scan etc. but they found nothing wrong and told me that it was normal - could be lack of sleep and stress induced - not anything to worry about. However - it makes me nervous whenever it happens and I have not been given a satisfactory explanation of why this happens to me.

aviator74

Posts: 3
Registered: 6/14/07
Re: skipped heartbeats
Posted: Jun 14, 2007 2:09 AM   in response to: michfig in response to: michfig
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I agree completely with you about how scary this feeling is - I drove myself to the emergency room on two occassions because I thought I was going to have a heart attack - the extra beats come out of nowhere and are very unsettling. I was told after hundreds of dollars in tests that there is nothing wrong with me. I am trying to do some relaxation meditation exercises and cut back caffeine to one cup of coffee.

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