I am so happy to have found this forum. I feel like I don't know what to do.
I am a super active 37 year old male. about
a year and a half ago I started getting pvcs while exercising (running, rock climbing, surfing). They started to get increasingly worse. They seemed to come on while I began exercising and would fade away as my heart found its rhythm. I thought this might have had something to do with the fact that I had returned from Nepal where I trekked and climbing to 20,000 feet and spent months at a time at high elevation. Prior to this, I was rangering and living at high altitudes in the Sierras.
So when I came back down to sea level and started running a couple of times a week and hitting the rock climbing gym - the pvcs showed up. I could hike 20+ miles a day and climb El Capitan before this without one skip. Ugh.
So 8 months ago I went and saw a cardiologist. He did a stress echo and found that I did get a lot of pvcs and even runs of nsvt. He said that my plumbing was fantastic but my electrical could use some work. He said I could do an ablation, but the skips were just a nuisance and that I could try and ignore them.
So I tried. I now take magnesium, coq10 etc. But about
a month ago they got worse. I had two episodes, one after running and one after surfing - a week later - where my heart couldn't find its rhythm for an hour or a little more. Both of these episodes induced a panic attack and sent me to the ER. So scary.
So today I visited another cardiologist (I moved to SoCal and found a new one locally). He looked at my old stress echo and listened to my stories and suggested a cath ablation. Just like that. Not once have I been given the option to take beta blockers. Why is this? Honestly, poking around in my heart doesn't sound great - but I would really like to fix this issue. At the moment, I am so scared to exercise that I have completely fallen out of shape. And I'm anxious to all hell - walking up a hill is giving me skipped beats.
So Anxiety plays a role for sure. I do get anxiety when I run, surf, climb etc. I can't help but wonder if adrenaline and anxiety is to blame and some anti anxiety meds might help? I actually asked my cardio this and he said no this isn't anxiety, you have an arrhythmia etc. But one month ago (when I ended up in the ER due to an hour of skips after running) I switched jobs and moved south. And I was anxious about
it and I went for a run and had a panic attack. That made me even more anxious and it's been terrible ever since. I can't help but feel like there is a connection.
Also I believe that there is a connection in fitness level. I am way less fit then I was 6 months ago and even less so than I was 1.5 years ago. The more I fall out of shape - the more skips I get when I run or walk up steep stairs etc.
Couldn't I see a shrink, get anxiety meds and slowly get myself back into shape? Or is it all really just that the electrical system in my heart broke 1.5 years ago - out of the blue - and no one knows why?
It's just all so confusing.
It is impeding my happiness and my life so I need to do something. Any advice from anyone with exercise induced NSVT with a structurally sound heart? If so, do you think it could be caused from anxiety? Have you noticed less skips the fitter you get?
Thanks so much for any help.
Post Edited (AnxiousAboutAblating) : 4/10/2014 1:25:34 AM (GMT-6)