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I was diagnosed with SVT 8 years ago. At 65 years old, I've been up, down and all around. I think I feel the very worst when my pulse dips down into the mid 50's.
Does anyone else have this experience? I am able to get my pulse back down with certain measures, but not as easy to get my pulse back up.
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SVT doesn't cause bradycardia (slow pulse below 60bpm)
If you're on a beta blocker (Metoprolol or some other medication ending with "lol" it causes slowing of the conduction of the heart beat so would cause these symptoms.
There are other heart arrythmias which can cause bradycardia so you should have this investigated and not assume that it's SVT, because it's not a symptom of it.
Thank you, I do have Bystolic to be used as needed, of which I rarely use. I'm wondering how the bradycardia is tied into , if it's possibly a rebound effect of the SVT.
I do have an appointment with a my Cardiologist in the next few weeks, and just completed a 2 week Zio-Patch.
What arrythmias do you know of that cause bradycardia?
Heart block of varying degrees and Sick Sinus Syndrome causes bradycardia.
I guess the zio patch will reveal if there is a problem.
SVT does not cause bradycardia as a rebound effect. The heart functions normally when not in SVT.
Interesting, thank you for your input Annie.
If you feel that having a slow pulse correlates with feeling bad, then you should check it out. However, I am a 62 year old woman and my resting pulse is always below 60 and I feel fine. Slow pulse is quite ok for a fit person. But as I say, if you don't feel good with it, have it seen to.
Thank you for your response Katherine.
Yes, I worry about it because I do feel so bad when it's low. I'm not sure I can say I'm a fit person, but I do walk briskly (at least as fast as my little dogs can pull me:) 2-5 miles on most days.
What device do you use to track your heart rate and rhythm, Katherine and Annie?
I don't need to track my heart rate and rhythm. Why would you?
You know when it's in SVT, you don't need a device to tell you so. I normally use the finger pulse on my phone to record the rate as I can go back and see when my last SVT was and how many I had in a year etc
But constantly tracking heart rate when you're not in SVT leads to anxiety. Cindy you've identified that there may be a problem, have done some sort of heart monitoring which I'm guessing the cardiologist will look at when you see him at your appointment.
I have a Garmin Forerunner watch with a chest-band heart-rate monitor. It is useful for running, so I can train in particular heart-rate zones as the need arises. It also helps when I am in SVT and trying to get out of it. I can show it to the medics and they take notice straight away, instead of taking time to do the whole triage thing. However, since I went onto daily flecainide I haven't had an episode so I don't need it for that. There are many similar sports watches on the market now, and particularly, fitbits, smartphone apps etc. But I am happy with my Garmin. Heart rate monitors can also help you gauge what is normal for you in different settings - sleeping, working, exercising, resting, so you can have better idea of baseline conditions. Then if you feel there is a problem, you can check your heart rate. For example, it is not a good idea to exercise if you have an infection that causes a 10% increase in your resting heart rate. But be aware that any of these monitors are not as accurate as an ECG and could give false readings. I've never had that problem, though afaik.
Monitoring heart rate for exercise so that you can maintain your exertion at the desired level is a good and healthy thing to do.
People don't need to monitor their pulse on a day to day basis though unless advised by their cardiologist. It usually causes a lot of anxiety due to misunderstanding about what causes changes in heart rate.
Using baseline heart rate to gauge whether you have an infection or not is pretty inaccurate. A lot of things can cause a 10% difference in your rate including a bit of anxiety, stress, dehydration. Using the way you feel is a much better way and taking your temperature if you think there is something going on.
I monitor my HR & rhythm using a pulse oximeter mostly to confirm that my HR correlates with what I'm feeling. That isn't always the case. The regimen I use to lower my pulse is first ocular pressure, then if that's not adequate, I do carotid massage. If my tachycardia is unresponsive to either of these measures, then I take 2.5 mg of Bystolic. I've tried taking a routine dose of medication and it's caused me to dive down into the 50's, so that's why the prn dosing works better for me.
Thank you Katherine. I'll take a look at those types of monitoring systems. I totally understand your reasoning to keep on top of your goal zones for exercise, as well as tracking what rates are normal for you at what time of the day and with what activity. I am normally in the 60's in the early morning hours, but once I go below 60, I'm feeling it, so I check to confirm. I do realize the monitoring system I use isn't as accurate as an ECG, but it does give me useful information.
Interestingly enough, I did find information about bradycardia as related to SVT:
Supraventricular arrhythmias occur in the area above the ventricles, usually in the upper chambers of the heart, called the atria. The irregular beats can either be too slow (bradycardia) or too fast (tachycardia).
I plan to double check this with my Cardiologist just to be sure.
If anyone knows of a way to raise the heart rate when it suddenly drops I'd also be grateful for tips. Exercise is not a good solution because my HR drops very rapidly as soon as I rest
I've had PSVT attacks since I was 17 years old. I had an ablation at age 48 years which stopped the PSVT attacks but highlighted an underlying condition. My heart rate would rise very quickly with minimal exercise and drop rapidly at rest. It caused tremendous fatigue. I started Metoprolol but that made the issue worse. I was switched to a calcium blocker called Cardizem (Diltiazem). That worked for about 6 months before symptoms worsened. After going to the highest Cardizem dose I still had no relief so begged for Corlanor. That is a miracle drug in terms of its ability to keep my heart rate at a normal level with exercise.
After about 2 years I started having unexplained low blood pressure and sometimes with it, either high heart rate or low heart rate. So that would be blood pressure in the 80s/50s or heart rate above 120 or below 60. Sometimes it's just the heart rate that's low. My Cardizem dosage was lowered twice but I'm still having intermittent issues. My cardiologist believes I have Autonomic Dysfunction as also I struggle with things like temperature control (inappropriately cold or hot), inability to sweat appropriately and inability to properly digest food.
To manage these symptoms I have to get adequate rest and stay well hydrated. I also have to consume more salt. I've noticed that both my heart rate and blood pressure are strongly influenced by fatigue. I'm able to easily raise my blood pressure by drinking a sports drink with electrolytes but haven't found a way to quickly raise my heart rate when it's low. I've been to the ER when my HR dropped to 48 but since all tests were normal they just told me to rest. I've missed time from work or been affected at work when my heart rate or blood pressure suddenly drops. I get dizzy and fatigued.
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