What works at home to get out of an svt episode?

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My daughter is 13 years old and had her first svt episode 2 months ago (at age 12). It happened while sitting in class at school and her heart rate got up to 244 bpm (she was in svt for about 45 minutes) by the time she was given adenosine to reset her heart. Since then, she hasn't had another episode. She is taking a beta blocker pill once a day. Her doctor told us about several different ways she can try to revert an svt episode if she is to go into svt at home or at school. My question is, which maneuvers work best for you to stop svt on your own? We are going on an 8 day cruise next month and I am worried about her having an episode while on the ship. I want to be prepared just in case.

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  • Posted

    Hi I'm so sorry poor darling only being 13 at least I was 21 it's very scarey when it happens and as hard as it is the best thing to do is stay calm I was shown to put the tip of my thumb in my mouth and blow down like your blowing a whistle hold for 5 seconds and try again until my heart kicked back to normal another way is and it will be hard for her is to push down like when you have a baby or to go into a fetal position tuck your chin in there's so many ways these are just some get her to try and find what works for her I wish her luck I've been living with it for 22 years but had 12 years with no attacks certain medications or foods drinks can set it off

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    • Posted

      Thank you! I think that will be the hardest part, keeping her calm. She was in panic with her first episode. I pray she goes 12 years with no attacks... this "wait and see" when the next one comes stuff is scary. I get worried while she's at school, when she's cheering, and when she's away at a friends house.

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  • Posted

    Oh bless your daughter. I was diagnosed with SVT when I was 40, but looking back I probably had it from when I was 13 as after my father died I kept getting a really fast heart rate and I was diagnosed with panic attacks. For me now I find holding my nose and baring down works,drinking ice cold water quickly, or running my wrists under cold water. I know it can be scary but I've learned that the calmer you can stay the quicker it resolves .Iam  56 now and have only had to go to hospital twice whenI was first diagnosed. As for the cruise I love cruising as you always have the knowledge that there is medical assistance on board and that it really comforting.I know this can be a scary problem but it is possible to have a full and happy life.Go and enjoy your cruise, you will love it !

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for sharing these maneuvers. I want to be as knowledge as I can so I can help her if she were to have another svt attack. Keeping her calm will be the challenging part. She was terrified and panicking with the first one, but in her defense she had no idea what was going on. I did verify with the cruise line that they carry adenosine and they do, I am a little worried of this happening while we are off exploring the islands in the 3 ports, but I want her to be able to do this and live her life like a normal 13 year old.
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    • Posted

      I know this is scary, but even in the worst case sinario and she does have an attack, her heart is young and strong and will be able to withstand the fast heart rate for hours with no adverse effects to the heart. I have had many chats with my cardiologist and been reassured that it will not cause a heart attack.If it does start then you have plenty of time to get back on the ship or go to a local hospital, easy to say  I know, but anxiety sometimes can be a trigger, so reassure her that you have it covered.In reality she may never have another attack, but if she does there is so much they can do now, particularly an ablation that is effectively a cure for some people!
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  • Posted

    Try all the standard vagal maneuvers like cough, bearing down as if to have a bm, ice water to the face, blowing through a straw, etc..

    And Google "modified Valsalva maneuver for SVT". There's a video on you tube on how to do it. Have her sitting up, while bearing down. Then have her lie flat, and you lift up her legs at a 45 degree angle. There's a study showing good results from this one.

    I'm having an ablation a week from tomorrow, to hopefully fix this. I had to be converted with Adenosine last summer in Switzerland on vacation.

    My EP says there's a nasal spray drug in trials to stop SVT. Says it's looking promising, but at least 5+ yrs away.

    Best wishes to your daughter.

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  • Posted

    I have svt and I've heard make yourself gag can work. Bearing down...like your going to have a bowel movement. I'm sorry your daughter is dealing with this. I've had my first episode this year at 45 yrs old. It's scary and may cause her anxiety and panic as it did me. I hope this gets better with time. I know pepole who have had it young and outgrew it years later. I pray mine leaves as well. Good luck to your daughter.

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  • Posted

    Most everything I would have independently offered has been well covered by other respondents, gm.  Plus, your nasal spray comment will have me looking into that in a few minutes.  I'm guessing your daughter will have no problems on your cruise, and successes  such as that will give her much confidence.  We all wish the very best for you and your daughter.

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    • Posted

      I was asked by my EP if I wanted to enroll in the double blind study. I declined, as it would've added more visits, paperwork and prolonged time of the ablation. He said the study was nearing completion anyway.

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  • Posted

         Gina, I had some success in tracking down the nasal spray story, and some of what I found is very encouraging.  The drug is undergoing testing, and so far so good.  It has a ways to go, though, so we'll have to wait and see.  Sorry for all the platitudes, and I can tell you that I personally and selfishly deeply hope the stuff works.  My ablation didn't work (I have an unusually complicated situation), so an "at home" treatment is very appealing.

         You could read what I've read by googling etripamil.

         Hope this helps.  Keep trying the at home breathing, etc techniques.  They have kept me out of emergency rooms for a couple of years now , and that's a big plus. I have a health-challenged aolescent in my life, and it does make life tougher.  Take care.

    Emis Moderator comment: I have removed the link as users can easily find the information using a search engine rather than linking to a specific website. If users want the specific link use the Private Message service to exchange.

    http://patient.uservoice.com/knowledgebase/articles/398331-private-messages

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    • Posted

      Thanks for finding the name of it. I hope my ablation is successful. Should be- they think it's a basic AVNRT. But if not, I'm not going to do it again. I sure hope the spray is a success. My Dr said that while they don't know if they're giving the drug or the placebo, ...when they see it convert to Normal Sinus Rhythm right away...they know.

      He also had this cool app on his phone. There were 2 square metal things attached to the back. You put a finger from each hand on the metal for 30 seconds...and it analyzes your ekg . You can save it and email it to your dr. Pretty cool. He let me try it. Forgot the name. And I have no idea how it can work with just 2 fingers.

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