Cardio says I have MVP, Echo says No - Please help!

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*Bella*
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   Posted 2/23/2007 11:28 AM (GMT -7)   
I just got back from my Cardiologists appointment, where he said my blood work looked fine and my Echo looked fine, but he believes that I have Mital Valve Prolapse.

I am more confused than ever! I said “Can’t I just have beign PVC’s?” and he said “No, why would you have benign PVC’s?” I just don’t know what to believe now.

I asked him about drinking on Toprol and he said plenty of people take it and “imbibe”, but he thinks alcohol can cause the palpitations that I’ve been having. I drink a maximum of 2x per week (just on weekends), and have seen no more or less PVC’s with alcohol. I drank way more at 21 and never had any problems.

So, long story short he thinks drinking on it is fine. What do you think?

What should I do now? I’m 24 and I just want my normal life back. I don’t want to be on Toprol for the rest of my life and I don’t like being told I have a condition that doesn’t show up in any tests.

In the time that I’ve been reading this board, I’ve seen many people talk about “benign PVC’s” in a structurally normal heart, but apparently my Cardiologist doesn’t believe in benign PVC’s.

What are your opinions of his diagnosis. I am very confused and scared.
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els
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Date Joined Oct 2005
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   Posted 2/23/2007 12:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Bella, what I would do in your situation is get a second opinion.  If your still questioning your cardiologist's diagnosis & plan of treatment for you then it is essential that you do seek out another cardiologist who would review all your tests, symptoms, and do a full physicial of you and hopefully be able to give you some peace of mind with this.

Elisha
Co~Mod: Depression
Moderator: Heart & Cardiovascular Disease
http://www.healingwell.com/donate


*Bella*
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Date Joined Jan 2007
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   Posted 2/23/2007 1:53 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Elisha,

Thanks for responding. The thing is, he made it seem like there was no other possibility. I am supposed to pick up a Holter Monitor on Monday, but I don't know what that's going to do. I don't understand how people always talk about benign PVC's and he's saying they don't exist.

Sarita
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Date Joined Mar 2005
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   Posted 2/23/2007 4:13 PM (GMT -7)   

Your echo would have picked up any mitral valve problems if you had any.  Can you get a copy of the echo report?  That way you'd be able to see if the radiologist saw any prolapse.  If not, every cardiologist I've seen said that you can have PVCs with a structurally normal heart.  They are a pain in the arse, I know - have you ever tried exercising really hard for about 15 minutes when you get a run of PVCs?  That often works to eliminate them.  You probably won't be on Toprol forever - many cardiologists only recommend taking them when you're actually having many palpitations, not necessarily every day.

Also, have you ever had your thyroid checked?


*Bella*
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Date Joined Jan 2007
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   Posted 2/23/2007 5:10 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sarita,

I had my Thyroid checked, and they said everything was normal. I don't have copies of my tests or anything, but my family doctor said my levels are fine.

I have had 3 Echos and none saw MVP, but he said that Echos don't show everything, they may not show the Mitral Valves when I'm having PVC's. I have no clue what that has to do with it though. I thought you either have it or you don't.

I just couldn't believe my Cardiologist today. When he said that there was no such thing as benign PVC's and why would I have them, I was so suprised. I've read everywhere that PVC's are benign in a structurally normal heart, but he was CONVINCED there was MVP, even when I told him that the Tech who did my Echo showed me my Mitral Valves on the monitor and said they were "perfect". I was on 25mg of Toprol, but he upped it to 50mg, which I really don't want to take. He said take half in the morning and half at night. I let him know that he really scared me, but he didn't seem concerned about that. I asked him if my heart is structurally normal and he said "your heart is structurally ok, you have a rhythm problem"

I'm not too familiar with arrythmias, is there anything I should watch out for, like A Fib (my grandmother has this) or V Tach?

Summer39
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 2/25/2007 1:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Bella,
    First off, you may have to accept the fact that you may never have your "normal" life back the way you had it when you were 21, but does that mean your life is over???  No!!!  When I first was diagnosed with MVP, the echos that I had did not pick it up for quite some time.  I was told it could be due to a number of reasons.  How hydrated I was, how significant the prolapse is....etc.  It did however eventually show up on echo, but not for some months later.  I used to drink a lot when I was in my early 20's and had no problem with it at the time, but since I started having problems with my heart....I noticed that any time I have even 1 drink I notice an increase in palpitations.  I had to accept the fact that my drinking days are over.  It wasn't a big deal.  It was better to not drink than to drink and then feel like crap because of it.  I to take Toprol.  I'm on 100-150mg a day depending on my palpitations and if I'm having increased chest pain.  I have been on the Toprol now for approx 3 yrs.  It has helped my basic symtoms alot.  I went through alot of trial and error with other meds before trying this one and having some success.  I still on special occasions might indulge myself in a drink or 2, but it is very rare and it depends on how my body is feeling at the time.  I don't know if I will have to be on the Toprol for the rest of my life or not, but if that is what it takes to keep some of the symptoms manageable, then I am willing to do it.  I do agree with the other posts that if you feel that uncomfortable with your cardiologist's diagnosis than you should seek out a 2nd opinion.  I wish you luck.
                     Summer39

*Bella*
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Date Joined Jan 2007
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   Posted 2/25/2007 2:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Summer,

When the MVP didn't show up on your Echos, what made your Cardiologist diagnose you with it? I'm just curious, because my Cardio says that even though it didn't show up on my Echos, I have the symtpoms of it.

I didn't mean for my post to sound like my life has to be exactly the same as it was when I was 21, so I'm sorry if it came off that way. I just want to be able to go out, have fun, spend time with my friends and family and enjoy life. I come from a big Italian family and we do like our wine, so I feel a bit left out when I'm not able to partake. But, if I truly can't, then I'll have to learn to live with it.

I went out last night for dinner (drank root beer), and had palps throughout dinner. I went out wth friends after and had a few alcoholic drinks, and had no palps for the rest of the night, so I think my palps may be brought on by something else. I have no idea what, though.

My feeling is, if I have MVP, i'm fine with that. I just don't want to be misdiagnosed with something I don't have, and I don't want them to miss something that I may have.

Summer39
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 2/25/2007 3:21 PM (GMT -7)   
It was due to all the symptoms that I was suffering from that he went ahead and diagnosed me with it even though at the time it wasn't showing up on the echoes. The echoes just confirmed his diagnosis quite sometime later when it finally did show up. I'm sorry if I implied through my earlier post that you were complaining about life not being the way you were used to it being.....I understand completely about wanting to have somewhat of a "normal" life. My life has changed drastically compared to what it used to be after my diagnosis of my fibromyalgia and the mvp. It seems like everything pretty well has to revolve around what kind of symptoms I'm having that particular day as to whether or not I feel up to doing something or not. As far as the palpitations go....I know that from my personal experiences with them....I know they can be very irregular and sometimes without any visible type of pattern. I can have them one day and I try to examine the whole day and see if there is anything that I can find that stands out different than another day when it is virtually the same and yet I have no palpitations. Does that make sense? I've just tried to learn not to let it rule my thoughts even though it can be very hard. Especially right now for me since I have this recordable implant that I constantly feel and am having to adjust to. I'm hoping that it will provide my cardio with more info that will help him with my treatment.
Good luck and hang in there...you're not alone,
Summer39

*Bella*
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Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 1254
   Posted 2/25/2007 5:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Summer,

I can definitely identify with having them one day and not the next and doing nothing differently. I have tried to see what brings them on, but I can't come up with anything. I don't know that I can even say stress, because I feel stress AFTER they start.

What do you have the recordable implant for? Is that because of the MVP? I'm sorry for asking so many questions, I've only ever heard of a pacemaker (which my grandmother has). Is it something like that?

Summer39
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 2/26/2007 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Bella,
  I have a medtronic loop recorder that is placed just under the skin, that I will wear for an undetermined length of time, to see if they can catch any irregularities that they haven't been able to catch wearing a 24hr holter monitor or the holter monitor that I've worn before for 30 days, several different times.  The other monitors you have to push a button when you feel like you might be having an episode, but with this, it automatically is set to record on its own up to 3x when it detects something irregular and then I can manually record 4 events that I notice.  I then have to go in 1x monthly to download the info so it can continue to monitor things and be ready to catch anything that might show up.  My cardiologist feels very strongly that this will help him to treat my condition more effectively.  It was done on an outpatient basis, but it is usually done only after all the other tests have been exhausted first.  As far as it goes about stress, I know for me, I don't always feel stressed when I'm having palpitations, so I don't believe stress is a consistent trigger for them.  I don't know what triggers them and I've come to the conclusion that I might never know.  I mean, even if this recorder gives the cardiologist answers to help him improve my treatment, that doesn't necessarily mean that it will cause the palpitations to go away.  It may be something I just have to learn to cope with.  The best advice I can give you is to do lots of research....educating yourself goes along way towards making sure you are getting adequate treatment, ask lots of questions, but don't panic or stress over every little thing that pops up.  I know it is hard, but you can literally drive yourself crazy over analyzing things.  If you don't feel you are getting the answers you are looking for from your current dr....you need to seek out a second opinion.  That in itself would probably give you some peace of mind.  Keep talking to people on this forum.  There are alot of them and they are more than willing to listen and be there for you. 
                                Summer39

*Bella*
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Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 1254
   Posted 2/26/2007 10:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, I have my Holter on, and as luck would have it, I haven't had 1 single PVC all day. I keep saying that I'm going to get them the minute this shuts off. All I wanted was for the Cardiologist to catch the PVC's on the monitor. I literally get them every day, so I just don't get it.

Was it a total waste? I don't know what these things catch when you don't press the button, or don't feel any PVC's.

Sarita
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2486
   Posted 2/27/2007 3:34 AM (GMT -7)   

The Holter will pick up any PVCs whether you feel them or not; you might be having PVCs that don't necessarily make you feel symptomatic.  They will review the entire 24-hour period, not only the times you press the button.  The reason they have you press the button is to see whether the moment you feel something matches some sort of rhythmic abnormality.

Have you tried cutting out all forms of caffeine and alcohol for at least a week?  If you haven't done so, I'd give it a serious try; even if you don't think either effects your PVCs, you might realize differently after going a few days without.  The fact you haven't had any for the past day (that you've felt, anyway) is a great sign, though!

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