I am a 28 y/o athletic female experiencing weird heart rhythm disturbances-- should I be concerned?

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Hey guys! 😃 Just looking for anyone who maybe has had similar symptoms*?

BACKGROUND:

I am a 28 y/o, 5' 5", 110lbs, female fitness enthusiast who works out around 6 days per week (I run mid-distance, do HIIT, and train BJJ). Other than an non-serious arrhythmia (AVNRT) that was checked out by a cardiologist when I was 19, I am in good health 😃. I do not have to take medication for my arrhythmia.

Every once in a while- once every couple of years- I get a sudden, extremely noticeable bubbling (BIG, intensssse bubbles) or vicious gurgling feeling right in my heart... as if my regular heart rhythm is interrupted and a jelly fish squishes through my heart valves. It doesn't feel like my usual arrhythmia. The bubbling, out-of-rhythm feeling lasts only a few, panicked seconds, but it feels like if it lasted longer I'd probably pass out (though I have never actually fainted from this).

Once the "jellyfish" squishes through, the rhythm seems to return to normal, but I am left feeling slightly off kilter/almost dizzy/slightly unfocused/shock-like for a few minutes after. These episodes happen at random times, and usually not when I'm exercising... chatting with friends, watching t.v. etc.

Since they happen so rarely, pass quickly, and don't seem to affect my training, I haven't thought too much of them.

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CURRENT ISSUE:

But lately, these episodes are becoming slightly more prevalent i.e. a couple times a year rather than once every couple of years. Then just recently, I have had two within a two-week span--- very unusual....

....The last one was so sudden and crazy, that I had to get up from my desk where I was replying to emails and drop to my hands and knees, because the episode was so intense (sometimes posture changes help pop my heart back into rhythm when I am experiencing an AVNRT episode, so I thought maybe it would help this). Though the episode felt very intense, it was, once again, very short.

Additionally, I have been experiencing many skipped beats/extra beats over these past few weeks. These are actually fairly common for me (and most of the population), and most PVCs are benign, so I'm not concerned about these, but since they have really increased over the past little while, I wonder if they are somehow connected to the increase in these weird bubbly/panic/jellyfish episodes? (Especially since the bubbling episodes almost feels like missed beats + extra beats on steroids...kinda like a bunch of them strung together in rapid succession)

I certainly feel panicked for the duration of the gurgling/bubbling, but I don't have any history of anxiety issues or panic issues. I also don't struggle with acid reflux or stomach/digestion issues.

Anyone else have similar experiences? Could these be Mitral Valve Prolapse episodes where blood regurgitates back into the wrong chamber (<<<admittedly, that is totally just me being Dr Google, hahah)

Overall, I still am feeling well and my energy levels are the same (that is, when I don't have a jellyfish hijacking my heart 😂)

Should I be concerned?? Much love! ❤ Thanks in advance for reading and for any insight or shared experiences of something similar.

(*disclaimer: This post is made just out of curiosity, as I am well aware this is not the place to receive medical advice. I will get this checked by my doc if symptoms persist

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4 Replies

  • Posted

    It depends on how hard you trained in the past. I think its best to relax and try meditation techniques. The body and brain naturally adjusts to lifestyle and diet.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply, Joshua! I have always been very active, so this level of activity is normal for me. But that being said, I have been trying to make sure I take my rest days and am trying to cut down on stress in case those are triggers. Good suggestions- thank you 💕

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    • Posted

      Many athletes suffer from arrhythmias (Atrial Fibrillation) so it's good to follow up with a specialist in this area. Get an appointment with an EP or Electrophysiologist . They are the people who are most experienced at this type of disorder.

      If you don't address it now it may worsen. I have suffered with this condition for most of my adult life and it can become very debilitating. Treatments, today are very good, but make sure you look for a very experienced EP as some are better than others.

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your reply ❤. I will consider this. Thankfully, since writing this post I haven't experienced any more intense episodes (just some minor ones). Since the scary episodes are so infrequent, I'd feel silly insisting on seeing an EP; but, on the other hand, when they do happen they are super creepy/threatening feeling.

      Blessings to you! I hope you are finding some relief and effective treatment for your A-fib. Thanks for pointing me in a good direction of who to contact if things act up again.

      -Megan xo

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