Posted 10/17/2006 6:30 AM (GMT -7)
Hi all. I've never posted on this forum; I usually post on the arthritis and lupus forums, but I'm sure you guys can answer this question more so than some of the other forums. When is tachycardia a problem that needs to be checked out by a doctor. Over the last few years, I've had episodes of very rapid heartbeats, temperature spikes, and dyspnea leading to light-headedness. It doesn't happen often, but when it does it's pretty scary. The first time it happened was a couple of years ago. I was outside walking in the heat and humidity. I suddenly got so weak, dizzy, with the heart palpitations etc... that I had sit down in the middle of a pedestrian foot bridge. I was waiting for someone to come by, but no one did. After about 15 minutes, I was able to get up and walk back to my car, but remained shaky for several hours afterwards. It happened again last night--I was cooking dinner and all of a sudden got heart palpitations, a temperature spike, and short of breath. I happened to be standing over a pot of boiling water--I was directly breathing in the steam and humidity. I mention this because I believe humidity is a trigger. I get very short of breath in humidity, and I'm currently consulting a pulmonologist for possible lung disease. One of the problems that resulted in a referral to a pulmonologist was an abnormal chest x-ray that showed bilateral peribronchial cuffing. Peribronchial cuffing is often associated with heart problems, although it's also implicated in lung problems. I'm wondering if I should go visit my primary about this issue sooner rather than later. I see my pulmonologist in a couple of weeks, but I'm certain I could get an appointment right away with my primary if there was need. I should also mention that I do wake up in the middle of the night with these heart palpitations occassionally.
I've hesitated to tell anyone about these episodes, including my husband, because they can also be related to anxiety. If they are anxiety-related, I wouldn't medicate anyway. They're also relatively infrequent. It's just that in the context of my lung issues, I'm wondering if it's significant. I've never had an EKG, so I don't know if I have any heart issues (although chest x-ray and hrct scan show a normal size heart). What do you think?
Current dx: Rheumatoid Arthritis
Suspected dx: UCTD/Early Lupus
Current Meds: Enbrel, Plaquenil, Aciphex, Ultracet, Zyrtec, Allavert-D, Zantac, Tylenol PM
Past Meds: Relafen, Vioxx, Mobic, Voltaren, Sulfasalazine, Entocort, Prednisone, Humira, Reglan