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UserID: carled Type: CurePVCs Joined: Mar 02 2011
Thread Started: Mar 02 2011 Last Post: Apr 04 2012 Last Post By: PVCMan
Origin: General Topics Total Posts: 5

Another sufferer!

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Posted Mar 02 2011#1 of 5
carledUser Since: Mar 2011Posts: 1Hi all. 44 y.o. Male, generally healthy & fit, but I also suffer from what I think are PVCs. It's a feeling of a skipped beat in the chest accompanied by a strange almost breathless sensation and an uncomfortable feeling in the throat.

I was aware of these occurring very infrequently (once or twice a month) for a few years, then all of a sudden a few months ago it's gone mad. No great changes in lifestyle or diet, no huge stress (ok, a bit more anxiety due to work situation, but nothing major) but all of a sudden I was getting this several times a day and, as of last night, it was happening almost constantly.

As I lay in bed last night I was getting a PVC every 3rd to 7th beat of my heart. This is often accompanied by a strange sensation of dizziness or detachedness in my head - a sudden vertigo if you like. I think I then get anxious about it and it makes it all worse and then I'm in a vicious circle. The PVCs I'm experiencing as of last night are not quite like the ones from before. I used to get the "pause.... THUD!" type and I still get those occasionally, but as of last night they are much softer fluttery feelings but almost constant.

I couldn't sleep last night until about 3am - was just lying there uncomfortably worrying about the latest development. I was intending to go back to the doctor today to ask for a holter monitor to check them out, but as of this morning they stopped again and I haven't been aware of any all day. All of a sudden a few minutes ago, they've started up again! I'm now not looking forward to going to bed again as I know I'll be lying there with the horrible skipped beat sensation. I think this is making me tired and this is making the problem worse.

I've had blood tests and a brief ECG - all totally normal. Resting pulse rate is 56, blood pressure 120/80 - all textbook. I hate not having any control over this and I look forward to trying out some suggestions on here. Have just eaten a banana in hope... :-)
Posted Dec 30 2011#2 of 5
AmandaSchUser Since: Dec 2011Posts: 2I just discovered this website and you may now know a lot more about your condition since you posted 7 months ago. But, just to pass on some info that I've discovered over the past year with my PVCs. Also, I am a 3rd year nursing student with an interest in cardiology, so I've done some research on PVCs. The fluttery feeling you describe is consistent with PVCs. When I'm having them continuously, like 7 to 20 per minute (it varies), I tend to feel more fluttery. When I'm having them less often, 5 to 10 per minute, I tend to feel the thud. But there's really no rhyme or reason to it. The feeling can vary. Also, I've heard a lot of people tend to feel them more at night when they are in bed. I think it's really just because all of a sudden you find yourself with no distractions and it's just more easily detected. It's very possible that you are having PVCs even when you don't feel them. If I take my pulse randomly when I'm feeling fine, 50% of the time I'll detect a skipped beat within a minute.

I consistently have PVCs. I typically have 1 or 2 per minute. Then I have random bouts where I'll have up to 20 PVCs per minute. These bouts have decreased as I've taken more time out of my day to spend on hobbies, praying, exercising, etc... actions that help me reduce my stress. I've also noticed that having a lot of sugar at one time (3 cookies, a big slice of cake or pie, ice cream or a soda) can bring them on more frequently. There are different triggers for different people. My doctor recommended keeping a food and activity diary to help figure out what my triggers are. I've narrowed it down to sugar and stress, but there may be others.

The feeling your having in your throat sounds like a symptom of anxiety. In panic attacks, a constricted feeling in the throat is a very common symptom. I used to have panic attacks after feeling my PVCs come on strong before I knew what they really were. After learning more about my condition, the panic attacks went away. It's amazing what knowledge can do to help you cope with a condition. Breathlessness, dizziness and fatigue can be symptoms of both PVCs and panic attacks. If I have a lot of PVCs in short period of time, I can become fatigued and sometimes dizzy.

To help with the anxiety, which increases your heart rate causing sinus tachycardia, there are several steps you can take. Some sound elementary and some seem silly, but here they are. Take a cold shower, splash water on your face, place a wet cold washcloth on your nec/face/etc., stand in front of the refrigerator/freezer with the door open, take a walk outside if it's cold. This helps by constricting your blood vessels, which will slow down your heart rate. Avoid heat because heat is a vasodilator, which increases your heart rate. Cold = calm. If you are near a restroom, sit on the toilet and stimulate a bowel movement. This exercise is called a valsalva maneuver. It brings down the heart rate quickly. If you aren't near a rest room. Sit down on a chair and simulate a bowel movement (as long as you don't have to actually go) and try to relax. Repeat the valsalva maneuver several times with intermittent rest periods of 30 seconds or so. If you heart rate is over 100 and you aren't able to bring it down with these techniques, you should go to the ED.

You most likely will not experience SVT (supraventricular tachycardia), but it is a possibility that you could experience SVT if you have PVCs. Don't let this scare you, because it's not likely, but you should be educated so that you know what to look for. SVT is a tachycardic heart rhythm that can develop in people who have PVCs. It cannot be controlled or regulated by your activity, as sinus tachycardia can be with the techniques described above. SVT is a dangerous heart rhythm that may require electrocardioversion therapy (defibrilation). SVT can go away on it's own, but it may not. If it does not go away on it's own, it can cause cardiac arrest.

I met a great cardiologist while doing rounds for clinical. I learned more from him in 20 minutes than I had with 2 other cardiologist (including an electrocardiologist) over a one-year period. The other doctors didn't know about my medical background, so I think they tried to tell me as little as possible. I didn't realize the linke between SVT and PVCs until running into my new cardiologist during my clinical. He's great, amazing and has me feeling better than ever. The other cardiologists had me go through a series of trials on medications that were all wrong for me and actually probably made my situation worse. Now I'm medication free (which PVCs don't require medication) and I have way less bouts than before.

If your PVCs become sever and you aren't able to keep them under control through diet, exercise, stress reduction, or medication, etc. and you feel like you just can't live with it, then you may want to talk to your cardiologist about catheter ablation. It's common for correcting atrial fibrillation, but is sometimes used stop PVCs. First you'll have a cath procedure done to find out where the electrical misfires are coming from and to find out if the cath ablation is advisable. If the Dr. feels you are a good candidate, then you can proceed. The cath ablation is typically an outpatient or same day procedure. It's 100% elective for PVCs since PVCs are considered benign.

I hope this information helps.
Posted Jan 15 2012#3 of 5
PVCManUser Since: Oct 2009Posts: 228Hi AmandaSch,

Many thanks for joining our site. It is really good to see someone contributing that has such knowledge.
Thanks for all the information above, none of these things I have ever tried but it just goes to show that there are so many different techniques sufferes can put to the test to see what works for them.

Phil

Posted Apr 02 2012#4 of 5
gnb1961User Since: Apr 2012Posts: 1I am so glad i saw some of your postings...i too have been tentatively diagnosed with pvbs and am going for echo and holter tomorrow, but of course, sitting here later in the evening, i have pretty much stopped the irregularities...i am sure and hope they are back for the tests tomorrow...but would like to get them checked out and finally figure out if anything is behind them. Waiting for blood test results to see if my thyroid and magnesium levels are low, or just chalk it up to peri-menopause....
thank you for all you information and experiences. Will keep you updated
gnb
Posted Apr 04 2012#5 of 5
PVCManUser Since: Oct 2009Posts: 228Good luck gnb1961. Hope all goes well and keep us posted.

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