Atrial fibrillation, yawning!

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Hey all

Recently being diagnosed with paroxysmal fast atrial fibrillation. My heart goes irregular and fast for a few hours (180bpm) then reverts back to normal sinus rhythm. I'm only 29, so it's kind of hard to accept as I always perceived this to be an older persons condition. Especially since I do fitness and sports 5 days a week!

Can I just check I'm not going mad... My atrial fibrillation is triggered when I yawn. The doctors almost laughed at me when I told them, but when I yawn apparently I stimulate a vagus nerve which is putting me into AFib. Apparently I will require an ablation to fix my 'over excitable heart'.

Does anyone else have yawning as a trigger?

Thanks guys

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    Perhaps better to find a way of satisfying the vagus nerve rather than going for an invasive treatment I would say.
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  • Posted

    The vagus nerve stimulates digestion and heart beat and sometimes the messages get mixed up. My triggers are indigestion when my stomach feels bloated and stress or if I get overtired.
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    • Posted

      I'm on amlopodine for hypertension.

      My attacks have almost always come at night while asleep. Typically they last 7 or 8 hours. As well as the probiotics I take a Magnesium supplement.

      The probiotics seems to have sorted out my digestive problems and coincidently no afib perhaps because vagus nerve ok?

      There's quite of online regarding vagus nerve triggering afib.

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    • Posted

      Hi, thanks for all the info here. I too was diagnosed with afib a couple of years ago and I’m trying to put my finger on what starts it off. I’m pretty co Gide this that when I get an IBS attack, it seems to encourage afib. I’m now looking again at the vagus nerve, which I’d heard about before, I think from my acupuncturist a few years ago. It’s very interesting that there may be a link here. Do many doctors recognise this I wonder?  I’d like to understand more. What probiotics do you take please?  Many thanks again for sharing this.
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    • Posted

      Thanks Sarah. Just read your email and that you too mention the vagus nerve. I’m sure there is a connection here between IBS and afib. I’m searching the web.  I also notice that stress is my worst enemy as this too can trigger afib. Thank you again for your experience x
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    • Posted

      Hi Reginald i know its a few years since this post, but am in a similar position. My afib generally comes on in my sleep (4-7am) but will come on by yawning too. Did you get any more information on this type of vagal afib? Not many take me seriously when i mention it. i have gone into afib from yawning, stretching or coughing.

      its not a fast pace but still that irregular rhythm.

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  • Posted

    I have the vagal-type of AFIB and I have gone into AFIB by taking a deep breath (so similar to yawning), burping, drinking water too quickly, of as the result of heartburn/acid reflux.
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  • Posted

    Hi Gerald, How is your afib now?

    i know its a few years since this post, but am in a similar position. I am relatively fit and still exercise but have this vagal afib.

    Most of my afib attacks comes on in my sleep (4-7am) but i also get several from yawning too. Sometimes stretching or coughing has done it too. Did you discover any tips, im trying to link digestion and this vagal afib but cant pinpoint it yet. My attacks are not a fast pace but still that irregular rhythm.

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