Ectopic beats - am I just crazy or should I be concerned?

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Hi all,

I've been having heart flutters/skipped heart beats for the last 2 years since my fibromyalgia first came. They started happening only here and there but have now become more frequent. And when I say frequent, I mean multiple times a day for days. So far this week, it's been happening for 4 days.

Last week, I had an echocardiogram. The week before, I wore a 24 hour holter (which I had no palps as I was wearing it). I even had to go to the ER about a month ago because they were so strong, I thought I was dying. They did blood work, EKG, & chest x-ray which was normal. Over the last 2 years, I have probably had 15 EKGs, 2 echos, two 24 hour holters, 5 chest x-rays, and a nuclear stress test. All normal.

I also get this electrical shock feeling in my body due to neuropathy (so I was told) and when it happens, it makes my heart skip with it. It's like an electrical zap feeling that makes my body jolt. It's been happening since my Fibro first came as well and I am terrified it has messed up the electrical system of my heart. Also, I have adult asthma that came with my Fibro and I have been having trouble breathing which is one reason they did the recent echo & holter because they keep telling me my lungs sound clear.

I know this may sound irrational but I am terrified my heart is just going to skip and stop and I'm going to die from cardiac sudden death.

How do I know whether I should be concerned or if I'm just crazy??

Medical background: Ménière's disease (inner ear disease), Fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, polycystic ovarian syndrome, & GERD.

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  • Posted

    Hello sory to hear you experience these awful things. I'm 17 and only had a few tests and they (cardio) basically said I have paroxysm af but ectopics and symptoms are just "in your head" which seems stupid, so on route for a second opinion.

    Your heart wont skip and stop so don't worry or think that it will.

    I'm not saying it's in your head but once you feel it its a never ending cycle of anxiety.

    Please try and stay calm.

    Are you on beta blocks of calcium channel medication? If not you may want to speak to a doctor regarding future coping mechanisms.

    Hope this helps

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    • Posted

      Omgosh thank you so much for replying!

      Yes, the anxiety is never ending over these! When I don't have them, I'm scared I'm going to.

      I'm on new asthma medicine and it's been making my anxiety out of this world so that's making my reactions to the palps worse. It's not my med causing them because I've been having them way before this but I know the steroid in this medicine isn't helping me stay calm either.

      That's good to know my heart won't just stop - so scary!! A couple times, I've had palps so hard before that I almost fainted (everything started going black & my body went limp) so I get scared that it's just going to randomly stop.

      And then I worry cause it's like if you aren't having it while you're having testing done, can they still catch what's wrong?

      It just turns you into an irrational being lol

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    • Posted

      Like Derek said below, if there's nothing major structurally then you probably won't instantly die(touch wood). Yeah it's so scary! But you just need to relax when you get them and try and avoid them, so find the triggers? My triggers were/are exercise (strenuous) caffeine and other stuff.  It seems a lot like anxiety  and be re-assured that tests came back normal. Anxiety causes a lot of those symptoms and makes you think it's something else. Like I said mines half AFib half anxiety. 

      I'm not sure if they will put you on medication. Do you get episodes or constant brady/tachycardia? I went to my doctor first and instantly put me on bisoprolol because of my age etc and now moved onto a more powerful medication for it. I was put on bisoprolol primarily for tachycardia constantly over 100 but not dangerously high. And now moved onto another for AFib. If it's constantly bothering then you may want to just speak to your doctor about it - they might suggest other stratedgies like CBT or meds.

       

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    • Posted

      I don't drink caffeine. I don't smoke. And I don't drink alcohol.

      I have no triggers other than sitting there and it happening. Sometimes it happens when I am active.

      My heart beat since 18 years of age has been 90-120. Sometimes when I get anxious, it goes to the 130s.

      I cannot control anxiety, I can only manage it. Due to my inner ear disease, your body's natural response when losing balance is to pump you full of adrenaline e.g. slipping on ice. I'm constantly off balance therefore mine is always high - the difference is I just live with it.

      I will definitely ask my doctor what she thinks. Thank you so much for your advice, it has really helped! smile

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  • Posted

    "15 EKGs, 2 echos, two 24 hour holters, 5 chest x-rays, and a nuclear stress test. All normal."

    You can be confident that you have no cardiac problems.

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    • Posted

      Most of those tests were due to sharp shooting chest pain that lasted every other minute for weeks on end.

      The multiple skipped heart beats are new. That's why I am nervous. Having one here and there compared to having multiple an hour a day for several days is significantly different.

      But thank you for the reassurance! I genuinely appreciate it smile

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  • Posted

    Looking at all the Forums you post to can I ask if you paying for all the tests you are having?
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    • Posted

      The forums I post to are for my other medical issues. I've had chronic vertigo since I was 17. Just diagnosed last year (12 years later) as Ménière's disease.

      2 years ago, out of the blue, I started almost fainting from dizzy spells. Doctors automatically test your heart to see if it's a culprit. In doing so, I also had blood tests where they discovered low thyroid. My muscles started twitching all over my body (mainly thighs), I lost strength in my left leg, and my grip in my hands decreased. I started going numb in my tongue, face, arms, and legs. On top of that, my vision has decreased from -2.75 to -3.75. My optic nerve is also pale and my eyes see colors differently. I also developed asthma (which I never had before) and

      Not knowing what was wrong with me, I had to see multiple neurologists, a rheumatologist, a cardiologist, and a neurotologist. I had to attend physical therapy as well. With each doctor you see, they perform their own tests for their own reasons.

      So to answer your questio I

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    • Posted

      I live in America and have medical insurance through my job.
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    • Posted

      Just as well. You would not get all thoses tests with the NHS in the UK.  Neurology for instance usually has a 26 week waiting time.
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    • Posted

      I waited 6 months for my first appointment. A lot of times, getting an appointment with a specialist takes a long time but the tests are quicker.
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    • Posted

      Not always.I waited five weeks to see a an NHS cardiologist then 17 weeks for a stress echocardiogram and then 10 weeks for an angiogram and then seven months for an aortic valve replacement. A friend in Baltimore had it ALL done in three weeks,

      When quoted 42 weeks to see a neurosurgeon I had to go privately.

      This year I needed another cardiac procedure and went privately. Saw him on March 21st and had the procedure on April 20th.It could have been sooner but the first date didn't suit me and then he was going on holiday.

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  • Posted

    I had been having occasional skipped heart beats for a couple of years, 24 hour ECGs could never find anything as they never co-incided with my symptoms.

    As the missed beats were getting more frequent, I bought my own little ECG machine from Amazon, that way I could check what my heart was doing when I had the symptoms, I then had something I could show the doctors and so they started to take me more seriously.

    Turned out I had Ventricular Tachycardia.

    Tell me about your breathing problem making the doctors look at your heart please.

    I now have breathing problems which I am blaming on the after effects of the beta-blockers they put me on, but I am soon to see a heart failure specialist over something else re my heart they saw from an MRI scan, so I am wondering if it is that the makes my lungs feel like they dont work.

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    • Posted

      I read that beta blockers aren't good to take for people with asthma n such as it could make it worse.

      You've had an MRI of your heart?

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    • Posted

      I didnt have asthma, but a couple of days after starting the beta blockers I feel as if I have it, whats more it has remained now I stoped taking the BB for over a month!

      Yes, the NHS did a MRI scan, told me it was fine but I see a heart failure specialist next week becaus they found something wrong with my heart on the mRI, so they tell you one thing one minute and another the next!

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    • Posted

      I took an antibiotic that made my lungs feel the same way and they haven't been the same since I stopped. I had to take it for a prolonged period of time. It was terrible. I feel for you.

      I hope it's something simple they saw or nothing at all and are just being cautious.

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