PVC's and how to control them

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bandit28804
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 3/9/2006 8:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Just wanted to see if anyone here might know a bit more about this. I have been having PVC's and they are driving me crazy. I haven't actually gone to the doctor about them, but am planning on doing so very soon. Just don't have the money at the moment to make the appt. 
 
These things started up out of nowhere about a two months ago.  At first I thought it was a mucle spasm and then one day I was feeling my pulse and noticed that it felt like it stopped during the feeling I was having.  Well i stupidly made the mistake of listening to my heartbeat and I actually heard it stop during the event.  Well I have since been told that your heart doesn't stop it just skips a beat.  Well to me a skip and stopping are pretty much the same thing.  The heart doesn't do anything for at least a second.
 
Anyway I am wondering if anyone has any suggestions on how to control or make these things less annoying.  Ever since I heard my heart stop. I have been overly paranoid.  I already have OCD, and Anxiety/Panic Attacks. Someone there suggested I post here about this, because I might get more help.  I have noticed that since I heard this happening I am a lot more anxious about it and it seems to be happening more.
 
All day yesterday I was convinced that I was going to die from a heart attack or something.  The more I worried about it the more my chest felt heavy and the more I had the PVC's.  It also seems that they are the worst at night when I actually lay down for bed. I don't know if it's because I am thinking about them more or it's because of something else.  Anyway I guess that is all I have to ask.  I just had one because I am talking about it, but all day long while I am working nothing will happen.
 
Well thanks for taking the time to read and hopefully I might get some suggestions. 

Hopes
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 297
   Posted 3/9/2006 9:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi! They sound like premature heart beats. They are commonly called pac's or pvc's. PAC means it is the upper chamber contracting too soon. PVC means it is the lower chamber contracting too soon. They are NOT stopped or skipped beats. They are EXTRA beats in between the normal rhythm beats. You dont feel the extra beat but normally the next regular beat. That is when the heart has a bit more blood in it that it is pumping out so you might feel the thud or little pound. Actually it can be a little butterfly flicker or a big bunny thump! ( :-)   That's what I call mine.)
 
You cannot tell the difference between a PAC and a PVC although some people say they can. You can only tell the difference by being on an EKG. Just about everybody gets them but not everyone feels or notices them. (Oh why do I have to be one of the lucky ones who notices??? sad )
 
The reason they might 'feel' different from time to time depends on when the EXTRA beat occurs in relation to the next regular beat. If it is close the the next regular beat you would probably only feel a little flicker or thump. If it is close to the first regular beat and farther from the Next Regular beat, your heart will fill up with more blood and you will feel a real THUD when it contract to release the blood into your system. STILL BENIGN in a structurally normal heart.
 
 
You are right to get your doctor to check it out. They need to be sure that is all it is. They are completely benign in a structurally normal heart BUT they can make you freak out!!! I have had them for over 5 years. WORRY and ANXIETY will make them occur more often. You need to try to ignore them or try to relax about them or they will probably increase. I learned biofeedback to help me deal with mine. I have good days and bad days. Sometimes I feel none! (YEAH ME!) Sometimes I feel them every third beat for 10-12 hours straight! mad They are still benign!
 
Some people take medicine to reduce the feel of them but the medicine will not reduce the number of them that you get. For some the medicine does not work and even makes them feel more of them. Go Figure!?! Only a doctor can help you decide about that stuff.
 
Good Luck And LOL!

els
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Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 4031
   Posted 3/9/2006 9:15 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi bandit,  I am glad you took the advice and came to visit us here on the cardio forum. 

I agree with Hopes that you do need to see a doctor about this.  It is good though that you are able to get some feedback from someone who is actually going through the same thing that you do.


~elisha
 


Sarita
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2486
   Posted 3/9/2006 2:42 PM (GMT -6)   
Bandit, Hopes is right that PVCs are usually nothing to worry about, but they do certainly have the ability to drive you up the freakin' wall.  I've had them for 12 years; they came on during my adolescence.  I'll usually feel several throughout the day.  But one night during college I was having such a difficult time with them - they were happening every 5-10 seconds for several hours - that I called the on-call cardiologist for some advice.  He told me to get up and run around the block as fast as I could.  I did that and immediately those darned things stopped.  Now when I get a run of them like that, I'll get up for a quick brisk run and that usually does the trick.  Otherwise, having some beta-blockers on hand could be helpful. 

bandit28804
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 3/9/2006 9:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Well I wanted to add that today I was moving furniture from one office to a new one. We were moving our office's at work. So anyway all day long I didn't have one event at all. Until I got home and started to relax. Is there any possibility that these things can be set off by eating certain foods? Also I am wondering if there might be any relation to toxic allergies. The reason I ask this is because I am currently staying in a basement apartment. This is the first time that I have lived in a basement.

I have horrible allergies to start with, and one thing I have noticed since I moved here is that I had a lot of new weird things going on. So I am wondering if there is a chance that these PVC's or whatever might have been caused by my allergies to mold/mildew? I read that they can be triggered by lack of oxygen. I am a smoker and someone also told me that smoking the same room you sleep in is bad for them. I am trying to quit smoking but haven't been very successful at it. I mean with this going on my nerves have been so tense which makes me want to smoke more.

Alright well just wanted to fill in some more info. I want to go to a doctor but I really can't afford it right now. I need to get some money before I go to pay the doctor however much it's gonna cost me for them to do all that stuff they do.

bandit28804
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 3/10/2006 9:24 AM (GMT -6)   
well thought I would add a bit more. I found today that I am very very much aware of these things at night when I lay down. Unfortunately now I am even more paranoid about all of this because I read something on the internet that laying down increases heart problems. Said something to the degree of heart palpitations and heart arryhthmias that occur when laying down dramatically increase the chances of sudden cardiac death. =0(.

So now I am really paranoid because this is when I notice this the most is at night. The more I worry about them laying there the more they occur. Last night I timed them and I was having up to 2 a min. I had 3 at one time, and I had two in a row at one point. I am really starting to get scared about this, and the more scared I get the less likely I will go see a doctor.

I know that is strange but I am almost scared of going and him saying umm yea you gonna die sorry bud. Or say we are going to have to do some major surgery or something like that. Drugs I can deal with but I dont' want to have heart surgery or anything like that. I shouldn't even have to be worried about this kind of stuff yet. I just turned 30 in December and this is not the way I imagined living my life at 30. I figured this would be the kind of thing that I would worry about in my late 40's or early 50's.

I know that I smoke but I am trying to quit. I don't drink. I drink lots of caffiene, and I am trying to cut down on that too. I exercise daily and none of this happens after excercise. It actually seems to occur more at rest then anything else. I am a little over-weight, my bp is 130/90 and my bpm was about 80 the last time I was at the doctor which was like less then a month ago. I would like to think that I have a normal heart. Ok well I know I am ranting and this should probably be on the anxiety forum and not this one because I am definately panicking here. Hope to hear back from someone.

onewaypockets
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 3/11/2006 1:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Have any of you tried magnesium supplements for PVC's? It helped mine, I used to get them daily, now very very rarely.

I take 500mg daily of magnesium citrate (NOW brand)

If you Google the words "PVC's and Magnesium" you will see many references.

Onewaypockets

bandit28804
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 3/11/2006 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm taking 2mg of Magnesium a night when I take my Centrum Daily. Is that enough or would I need more then that? I have tried just about everything I can think of except for quitting caffiene and smoking that seems to be a bit harder then everything else.

Aldo
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 289
   Posted 3/11/2006 7:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Bandit :)

You have admitted to two main causes of benign irregular heartbeats; cafeine and nicotine....Another is the evil weed for some people....I had them around your age long before I had heart disease. They happened when I lay down after a hard days work. I also smoked and drank coffee. They just went away after about 2 years. I had them last night but I am in the process of adjusting a heart medicine, a beta blocker, so I didn't really let them bother me, after I satisfied myself that there was a reason for them. I have also had 6 cardiac catheterizations and they do carry some risk in causing arrhythmias, I have read. This is another reason that tells me "hey buddy, you earned these", ha ha ha. When you have enough of them, you learn that worry is like a drowning person that fights being saved. It only makes things worse.

Boy, you got some very good advice from those above! I need to get back on my wonderful MAGNESIUM! I havent been out of the hospital long and have not taken any supplements per doc's orders. My restriction is over and I plan to restart the magnesium SOON! It works wonders for me. I'm sure glad that Onewaypockets reminded me.

Hope, you have a way of making PAC's and PVC's understandable for me :) I am very impressed with your knowledge of the functioning of the heart. You must be a professional, or you majored in Pac's and Pvc's, lol.

Beta Blockers, in the right dosage, are a very potent medicine. They are a potent medice in any dosage. If you start taking them on a regular basis and stop abruptly, it can kill you. Use under a doc's supervision only.

RJ

Hopes
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 297
   Posted 3/11/2006 9:49 AM (GMT -6)   
 Aldo, I just majored in PAC's and PVC's trying to cope with them myself. :-) I am no professional. If I were, I would go around wearing a heart monitor all the time because MY HEART BEHAVES when it is being monitored. tongue It must be afraid of something.
 
Bandit, read all the posts on PVC's or ectopic beats (premature heart beats like PVC's and PAC's). It will make you feel better!! Some people have recorded over 20,000+ a day on a holter and all the cardiologists still stay that it is benign if your heart is structurally normal. Many of these people will take beta blockers not because the extra beats are dangerous but because the extra beats drive them crazy. (YEAH, I UNDERSTAND! 20 can drive ME crazy. ONE GOOD THUD can drive ME crazy!)  My cardiologist recorded mine averaging at every 7th beat. That was after 2 hours of them and they had settled down considerably. I was hardly noticing them at that point. He said when they were really going to town earlier I was probably having them every other beat. However they are still benign! He is a great guy who actually experiences these himself daily. He says he does not take medicine because he knows what they are and knows it will not harm him. He is so kind because then he tells me "Oh yeah, anyone would be bothered by this many." He doesn't blow me off or make me feel like a nuisance.
 
Bandit, it is common to feel them more at night when you are quiet. It does not mean you are at risk of sudden death!!! Just a month ago mine went wild for three nights in a row. Why? I have no idea! I would feel practically none during the day. Then just as I sat down at night to watch a little TV or go to bed, they would come on with a vengance. ???? Go figure. I just tried to ignore them. I did feel my pulse and they were occuring every 2nd or 3rd beat mostly. Hard to sleep well but I did manage some those three nights. When I got up in the morning they would not be noticable once again.(If I would get up at night and get busy, I would not feel them.) ????? After 3 nights it just stopped and everything was back to normal.
 
That is another reason I personally am resistant to beta blockers. They seem to come in cycles for me and I don't want to take a medication I do not really need.Then, of course, there is that little anxiety issue with me and meds. It had been a year since I had experienced an episode of premature heart beats as bad as those three nights. So I figure in approximately a year I can expect another BAD round. ???? My doctor did just tell me I could go on Toprol XL just when the things are riled up like that and I may take him up on that!!
 
 

Post Edited By Moderator (els) : 5/22/2006 9:04:12 AM (GMT-6)


SarahP
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1185
   Posted 3/11/2006 12:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Bandit, I too experience some type of heart issue. They haven't officially named them PVC's, but only b/c they havent caught them on a monitor. I've worn a holter twice, and neither time did any show up.. gotta love your body;).
I went to the doctor and had all the tests done, and let me tell you I was SCARED... laid there on the table getting an echo done and was shaking so bad my teeth were chattering. Every test I had, I was afraid of what they would find, but after every one I felt a lot better, b/c they were all normal.
I do feel them more at night, my doc told me that the heart changes rhythym when we relax, so that could be why. It's almost like a reset. I've also read that they occur more at a slower heart rate, than a higher one, which could explain why at night/rest they are felt more. Not sure how true that is, but does make sense.
So far, I've spent a little over a year with this, and these days, barely feel any. I kept being told over and over and over to ignore them. So I graducally , with help of zoloft and klonopin, did start ignoring them and that made a big difference.
I also smoke, not very much these days.. on my way to quitting. And drink caffeine.. but I try hard to not drink any after 4pm. That way, when I am at rest, teh caffiene is no longer in my system.
My doc told me that no one has a perfectly "normal" heartbeat all the time. Most people just don't feel it. In fact, my mother has blood pressure problems and was in the ER and was dropping PVC's every third heartbeat on the monitor, she never felt them and the docs really weren't concerened. Her potassium was a little low and the nurse said that could cause them and gave her some. Told her to eat bananas.
I used to get really strange sensations with the PVC's. I would flush hot or cold, get really dizzy, and my heart rate would skyrocket. That of course scared me so badly that I kept making it worse. Now, none of that happens. So it obviously was me panicking, and not my body doing something.
Do you have any health departments in your area? They usually see you on a sliding scale depending on income, and could do an exam and maybe an EKG and set your mind at ease a little.
Hope you feel better soon!!
Sarah
I'm not procrastinating----I'm still doing yesterday!!!! 
I have no medical training, any medical opinions expressed in my posts are just that....opinions.


erskinej
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 3/12/2006 10:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Bandit,

This is a fairly frequent problem, and one I have posted on in the past. You might want to do a search here for pvcs and see what turns up.

prissy56
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/18/2006 10:19 AM (GMT -6)   

I am new here.  Recently, I have had episodes of PVC'S every day.  I went to the emergency room and me blood work and EKG was all normal.  Sent me home.  Then a week later the PVC's came back and lasted 10 1/2 hours.  Went back to the emergency room and the EKG did show premature beats and occasional skip beats.  The Dr. said these can be normal but did recommend a holter.  So I got that on and ha-ha it showed absolutely nothing.  My Dr. has an echocardiagram scheduled for next week, but so far he doesn't show anything abnormal.  I do run low in magnesium, but I do take supplements daily.  I have noticed that when my irritable bowel flares up these episodes come back.  Does anyone else experience this?  I am about at my wits end with these.  The Dr. did put me on some Ativan to calm me down when these episodes happen, but I wait if fear for the next episode to come back.

I would appreciate anyone's input!!! yeah


x*x*xJox*x*x*x*x
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/20/2006 2:51 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi ya every1 I'm new to this forum.  I'v been suffering with anxiety for the last four years and recently I seem to be getting lots of palpitations.  They scare me so much!  It feels like my heart skips a beat then beats really quick.  Sometimes Its just like a flutter in my chest and other times its a harder thump.  They seem to happen in patterns.  Sometimes I dont have them in days and then I will have them loads.  Even if I just have one or two I start to worry about them.  They really frustrate me.  Sometimes when I lie down in bed I can just feel my heart beating and it feels like its irregular.  I havent been to the doctors about them becuase I have been told that people with anxiety do get palpitations and the last time I went with my anxiety they didnt seem to pleased with me because I decided not to take the anti depressants they gave me after reading the instructions which scared me to death! Im worried that it could be something else and I feel like they are taking over my life as I am constanlty obsessing over them.  I have quit smoking and I dont really have much caffeine.  They do seem to happen really bad though for a couple of days after going out drinking (alcopops).  Does anyone know if these palpitations are dangerous? And do you think its best to have them checked out? My docs did give me before a 5 minute ecg in the surgery but i read on the net that this wouldnt find anythin wrong if i did have somethin wrong with my heart.

DREAMGIRL
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 600
   Posted 3/20/2006 3:30 PM (GMT -6)   
:-)  Hi new member,  anxiety huh   i am no stranger to that, so i want to tell you that it can cause alot of problems for you.  i have always been anti drugs until i had heart issues and i just spent the last year or so worrying about if i was gonna live or die, lots of anxiety their.  i fought and still fight taking an antidpreesant, but at some point it dawns on you that people sometimes need some help, so i started prozac and had a few side effects nothing major start on a low dose 5mg then in a week or so jump to 10mg,  i swear it made alot of difference in my anxiety level. i am not presently on prozac, i need to try another and will shortly. i know people who have been on antidpressant for years, they are fine and living happier than without.

els
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 4031
   Posted 3/21/2006 10:26 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi jox,  Welcome to healing well forum.  We are glad to have you.

When it dawns on you that you do have something wrong with your heart it is a major stressor.  I too have made some life changes like quitting smoking (last june) and trying to get more rest, etc.  I do believe that there can and is a certain amount of anxiety that can be expected.  The most important thing we all can do is get treated and stick with it.  I know it is easier said than done.  I myself as my cath is looming closer and closer and my anxiety and chest pains increase have found that I just wish for a cigarette....no matter how sick it will make me feel. 

I also take an antidepressant as I believe it is important to take care of the mind as well as the heart.

Take care and keep posting we would like to hear more from you....


~elisha
 


prissy56
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/21/2006 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi jox: I know what you are going through. Just when I think the extra beats are going to go away-they come right back. I have IBS, and I know this has something to do with it all. Right after I eat, I experience the PVC's more and more. I hate taking too many of the anxiety medicine that I have because all I do is sleep. I go for an echocardiogram tomorrow, so we will see what happens after that. I wish you luck and please hang in there.

Dandreia
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/21/2006 12:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi ... We must see PVC by two sides: Bad if associated with heart disease … Benign if they occur in good heart. So its always needed to go to doctor, to make a examination,blood and urine analysis,ECG, stress ECG and ecocardiograme. Living with PVC very symptomatic can require medication, such as soft tranquilizers, betabloquers and new life styles like exercise, YOGA, stop smoking and coffee and tea and chocolate or other stimulants , and as frequent the pvc are associated with the digestion see if there is any gastroesofhagic refluxus. Learn to live with pvc.

els
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 4031
   Posted 3/21/2006 5:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Prissy,  Good luck on your echo tomorrow...let us know how it goes... :-)
~elisha
 


x*x*xJox*x*x*x*x
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/23/2006 1:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you to you all for replying to my post.  Iv got to go to the docs next week about somethin els, so i think I am going to mention it to them.  Thats probably the best thing I can do in the meantime.  The one fing that puts me off medication is the fact that I mite get addicted, and I juts think well iv got to learn to control my anxiety without them at some point. My anxiety isnt as bad as what it has been in previous months and thats when I seem to notice the palpitations more.  I always seem to have different symptoms which worry me, its so weird!! One minute it can be chest pains the next, pain in my leg, the next palpitations!  Does anyone know if its ok to do more energetic exercise (Im scared to do anything that makes my heart beat fast for some reason)? Or will that make my palpitations worse?  How long have you all been suffering with the PVC'S for?

David_
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 3/25/2006 11:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I have been having the exact same problem for the last six months. I quit smoking three years ago and I don't drink much caffeine (anymore anyway) and I've almost completely obliterated salt from my diet. I too experience them more often than not after eating. Good luck with your appointment.

nydoc
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 7/7/2008 12:02 PM (GMT -6)   
19. Do not use the forum to give professional medical advice. If you are a medical professional, please remember the forums and chat are for patient support and not to be used for distributing professional medical advice and/or using the forum to represent your professional services.
 

Post Edited By Moderator (els) : 7/9/2008 2:29:35 PM (GMT-6)


artwork
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/13/2009 2:00 PM (GMT -6)   
I found this thread and find it very enlightening. I have been dealing with PVCs for years, but in the last year or so they have got much worse. It all started the day that I realized that that feeling that I have had was in fact a PVC. I have felt them for years, but did not know what they were. The day I figured it out all hell broke loose. I now get them most days and have to deal with the anxiety that comes with them. I have been dealing with panic attacks and general anxiety disorder for a few years prior to the PVCs starting. I am pretty young don't drink or smoke and really limit the amount of caffeine I take in on a daily basis. Here are a few keys for me:

Keep my mind occupied - This is really the big thing that helps me deal with all of my anxiety. For me I like to really get engaged in a hobby that I can really focus on. This really heps me, but does not cure anything.

Drink a lot of water - Peronsally I have noticed that when I get dehydrated my symptoms get worse.

Talk to someone - I meet with a professional to talk about dealing with my anxiety and all of the symptoms that come along with it.

PVCs for me are just the newest in a line of past issues. Before my PVCs it was racing heart and general anxiety, and before that was stomach issues. Everything began to shift was from stomach related issues after my brother had a heart attack. Then everything shifted over to heart symptoms. I have fears that I am gonna be next and this continues to drive my symptoms. I spend every day telling myself that I am fine and that I have nothing to worry about, but that simply does not work. Staying busy really helps me to feel as normal as possible.

It is easy to read that these symptoms are nothing that can hurt you but honestly they are horrible. I guess the key is that we are not alone. I have enjoyed reading about each persons experiences and hope that my personal views can help someone else. This is by no means medical advice...just my humble opinion. Make sure you get checked out by a professional to ensure your symptoms are in fact PVCs.

good luck!

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 10/13/2009 6:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello and welcome to HealingWell. You have tagged on to a old thread. If you would like to start a new thread of your own so the members are sure to see your post please feel comfortable doing so by clicking on new topic at the top of the page and posting your comments in a new thread that will have you listed as the author.



PVCs are very common and do have many causes and treatments.



Again welcome to HW.



Kitt

Paddy 1
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 2/9/2010 7:44 PM (GMT -6)   
I was just glancing over an older post, and I get a kick out some of the folks describing that they feel terminal if they experiance a couple of pvc's an hour. ....Don't want to appear insenitive, but take a long deep breath, release slowly, and move on, ...your okay.
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