Near constant palpitations

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Hi,

I am currently experiencing what feels like near constant palpitations. Feels like i'm having a missed beat every 4-5 beats which is scaring me to death! Have suffered with palps for past 10yrs. Have had Holter monitor, ecg, chest xray and bloods done a few years ago which came back normal, only thing consultant said was heart beat was a bit slow but didn't say anything needed doing. I do suffer from health anxiety and panic attacks which i know doesn't help and which the dr puts my palps down to! I also have episodes of waking in the night with a slightly fast heart rate and a warmth that spreads over my back which makes me want to tense my muscles, has anyone else experienced this?? Again it's very scary!

I'am finding reading other peoples experiences reassuring as it shows i'm not on my own!

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Lindsey, know exactly how you feel, it is very scary when you're feeling them regularly. Mine have definitely increased over the last couple of weeks, not sure whether it's my anxiety that's keeping the adrenaline going, causing more palpitations, feels more like a flutter sometimes. As you've had an echocardiogram done a few years ago, I'm sure there's nothing structurely wrong with your heart, although I would still advise you to go to your GP if you think there's a change, just in case. I'm having an Echocardiogram on Monday, have to pay for it myself as the doctor won't refer me, they think it's my anxiety that's causing them. I need to know that my heart is okay, because at the moment I feel sometimes that my heart is just going to conk out. They make me feel heady when I have a run of them.  My resting heart rate is about 52, so quite low. I'm sure there will be others here that may relate to your other symptoms, I'm amazed at how many people suffer from ectopics.

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    • Posted

      Hi Addie68,

      I did have an ecg done about a year ago which was referred to the hospital as it showed a slight lengthning of QT but they said it was nothing to worry about (again that was scary as i made the mistake of googling it!), i was taking citalopram at the time for my anxiety/depression which i've now stopped. My heart rate is usually mid 50s to mid 60s every now and again it can drop into late 40's. I feel as though i'm always at the drs but i usually feel better after going, think its the reassurance which then makes me think it is just stress/anxiety. The reassured feeling doesn't last long though when i have my next episode lol. If it carries on though i will make another appointment and ask if i can have another set of tests done.

      Let us know how you get on on Monday, can't believe they're are making you pay for it doing, anxiety is to me still an illness.

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    • Posted

      Hi Lindsey, agree with you entirely, anxiety and panic disorder is definitely an illness. It's amazing how the medical profession can blame it for symptoms especially if we've been to the doctors a few times, as if we really want to be there! We go to the doctors for reassurance, although it is short lived as when you get the  next run of ectopics, the fear comes back with a vengeance, as your mind goes through the what ifs. Googling puts the fear of God in to us, but it's hard not to look when we start panicking, Do try not to get paranoid about it. I'm 69, maybe older than you, and there's a bit of me says the heart's probably wearing out,lol. The echocardiogram will cost me £389, so some of my holiday money gone!!  Didn't want to wait another 4 months vis the NHS. Will let you know how I get on. 

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  • Posted

    Hi lindsey

    I suffer with GAD ans panic attacks daily and find that every palpitation I have makes me more anxious which in turn makes me have more palpitations! Its a vicious circle. It causes an adrenaline rush which makes me have more palpitations.

    I have recently cut out caffeine and have started drinking camomile tea. I have been prescribed 20mg Citalopram which I have taken before and they have really worked...however I am too scared to take them this time round. No idea why! I think Im scared of the side affects.

    If your GP has given your heart a clean bill of health then it probably is anxiety related and the more you stress over your heart the more you will have. I know from current experience.

    I have also started CBT via telephone fortnightly but its too early to say whether this is helping. At the moment I feel no different. x

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    • Posted

      Hi jen1978,

      I'm wondering if CTB would be any good for me. I was referred for counselling but i must not have been bad enough for it according to the questions you get asked! I too have tried to cut out caffeine and now tend to drink just hot water or if really desperate i have decaf tea (Have never been a coffee drinker).

      I hate that the whole thing is a vicious cycle, its so hard to try and convince yourself that its just anxiety!

      I used to take citalopram but stopped. Says on nhs website that it can cause palps in some cases. x

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  • Posted

    Hi Lindsey, Don Here. I'm a Med Surg, Med Tele. RN. I take care of cardiac patients all the time. The Brady, or slow heart rate is not as alarming as the fast ones when you have Palps. When exp palps and tachycardia, your heart may go into SVTs or Superventricular tachycardia. I'm not a doctor, so this is just my prof. opinion, not prof. advice. It sounds to me that you should get a sleep study done. Many people suffer from sleep apnea and don't even know it. I suffer from palps on occasion, and being an RN, I always fear the worst. I"m fairly young but went to a Cardiologist anyway, because no matter what, you should always get checked out by a Doc. So being in the industry, I knew all of the best Cards and picked one. I was lucky he was very knowledgable and didn't just dismiss my palps. come to find out, my palps and my blood sugar and my triglycerides were all due to sleep issues. If you have had these for ten years, i'm guessing that you have a harmless PVC or PAC. Can i ask your age? body type, weight, diet, stress level and the avg amount of sleep per night? do you get tired during the day? if you were to take...say a 3hr car ride, would you have trouble staying awake? do you find yourself getting drowsy when you are just sitting doing nothing or watching tv?

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    • Posted

      Hi,

      I'm 40yrs old, I'm over weight for my height etc. My diet is not too bad but could be better ( I am trying to lose weight at the moment). I've never smoked and only drink now and again. I have had a lot of stress these last couple of years (financial worries and reletionship breakdown).

      Sleep wise I usually get about 7hrs. Do find myself feeling tired by end of day but just normal tiredness nothing major. I usually start nodding off about 8.30pm on couch then when go to bed I come round for about another hour or two.

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  • Posted

    Oh, I forgot to mention, I don't sleep with a CPAP or O2, I just sleep on my side now and not my back. Sleep study showed that on my back my O2 stat was dropping to the 80s. Your heart tends to get a lil irritated when it doesn't get the O2 it needs. It also messes with hormones, healing, and lots of other things. Sleep is VERY important to the human body. I haven't had palps since i've started sleeping on my side. I wear a shirt with a small ball sewn into the back which keeps me on my side. Just look into it. If you have any questions, i'm more than happy to answer. take care.

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  • Posted

    Hello Lindsey,

                         Its frightening when you feel constant ectopics..You feel that you are going to die at any moment .I have had so many days like this over the last couple of years.....Even dialled 999and got taken to A and E, however, after having all the relevant tests done and laying there in bigeminy for 8 hours they said I could go home.....it was harmless !!!! Anyway, now when that happens I go to bed .The feeling  abates tho I'm still having the ectopics. I have never experienced the warm feeling over yr back, but there, we are all different.

                                  Linda

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  • Posted

    Hi Lindsey, just to let you know I had the echocardiogram this afternoon and it was all ok.  Cardiologist said everything was perfect. So that's given me some peace of mind, so hoping I won't go into panic mode when they appear, it's easier said than done, of course, but really have to work on my anxiety/panic brain. Been to see GP today also who has prescribed me Citalopram, as she feels I need help with controlling my anxiety, not sure I want to take them, but they're there if I need them. I suffer bad from insomnia and know lack of sleep makes PVCs worse. Do notice that I need to cough sometimes when I get these ectopics, I wonder if anyone else experienced same. Gave up coffee for a month, didn't notice any decrease in the PVCs, so I'm back to my coffee in the morning. Tried a Magnesium supplement for two months, no difference at all. I'm always interested in finding alternative therapies rather than pills from the doctor.  

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    • Posted

      Hi Addie68,

      So glad to hear everything is ok. I too cut out caffeine and if I want tea its usually decaff so theres only a small amount of caffeine in it. Not sure if this has helped or not but don't want them getting worse if i do go back to drinking regular tea.

      I'm currently taking magnesium tablets and think they have worked slightly as my palps don't seem to be as strong. It is early days though.

      I am trying listening to relaxation cds for panic/anxiety, only listened once so will see how it goes. I'm hoping they help as one of my problems is i tense my back and chest muscles when i have my palps and i now think i'm nearly always tensing them. Have got into vicious circle of tensing then when relaxing i get pains so then panic a bit and tense back up!

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