Heart skips a beat--"PVC's"

Discussions in anxiety, panic attacks, phobias and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Practical help for anxiety disorders.

Postby Night owl » Mon Jan 10, 2005 5:02 am

Hi friends,

I have what are called PVC's--premature ventricular contractions. Basically, your heart skips a beat and then resumes beating normally until a minute or so later, when it happens again. It feels like a big thump in your chest. They sometimes disappear for a few months and then come back. I have been having them for nearly a month now and they are very annoying. But the doctors say that they are not dangerous. I was prescribed a drug called Tinormin (a beta blocker) that sometimes stops them and sometimes does not.

Does anyone else get these?

If so, what do you do about it?

Thanks.

Night Owl 8)
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ish

Postby wookie » Mon Jan 10, 2005 8:57 am

I get a related thing, but it's re-entrant SVT. It's because of a slight abnormality in my heart - i.e. I have an extra conducting pathway so my heart just gets a bit confused sometimes. I get the bump thing but it also makes my heart beat fast afterwards. I was put on beta-blockers, and I also thought they might help with the panic attacks. Unfortunately I reckon the beta-blockers made the palpitations worse so I'm off them now. I reckon getting palpitations may have started my panic attacks, as it really scared me at the time. So I now have two problems to deal with - the heart thing and the panic attacks. I've heard that both can be effectively cured so I am looking forward to that day!

PACs and PVCs are supposed to be harmless. Most people get them at some stage or other. Some people just pick up on it a bit more. They can be a symptom of too much stress, caffeine, chocolate or sugar. I've heard they're also quite common for people who have panic attacks so I wouldn't be concerned about them. Just try and listen if your body's telling you to chill a bit more!
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Postby flyingfrog » Mon Feb 14, 2005 11:33 am

I started getting PVCs shortly after a period of stress where I was having severe panic attacks. I had never gotten them before in my life, and although I no longer get the attacks, I still have the PVCs sometimes.

I tried to make them stop by cutting caffeine, but that did not work at all for me. amazingly, what did work was cutting starches out of my diet. Not sugar - I eat fruit and juice - but starches. No more bagels! Eliminating my daily bagel (and rice, bread, etc) cut the PVCs by about 75%. I was having them several times a day and now I only have them once a week or so. Go figure! You might try cutting carbs too.

Good luck
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Postby worrywort » Wed Feb 16, 2005 1:26 am

I've never asked for a diagnosis, but I've had several occasions, where I think this has happened to me. Feels like my heart skips a beat, and almost like someone is chocking me, like I can't breathe. I maybe wanted to know what it was, but will no longer tell my physcian about this, we had the whole anxiety/stress talk and I tried Paxil for awhile, gained 20 pounds, which stressed me out even more, so I stopped taking it. I'm finding Jan. and Feb. quite hard to get through this year.
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Postby ANXIOUS JOHN » Thu Feb 17, 2005 1:45 am

I have PVC's and take atenolol. it slows my heartrate and lowers my BP. I am wondering if anyone else is similar and can relate to this: When I work out my heartrate increases as normal, and decreases as normal when I quit. But about a half hour later it increases to about 90 BPM for about a half hour to 45 minutes than returns to normal again. Any replys would be great. THANX
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Postby jurplesman » Thu Feb 17, 2005 5:08 am

I have seen some studies to show that taking extra magnesium supplements may stop abnormal heart palpitations. But I certainly would consult a doctor. The other cause are anxiety attacks as a result of excess adrenaline production.
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Postby Zero_Zeigar » Thu Feb 17, 2005 5:19 am

I have the same thing. When I first started having palpitations I was very scared, it caused me to have a severe panic attack wich I went to the emergency room for. Sometimes when my mind is more occupied I dont get the palpitations at all, but I usually have palpitations everyday. If Im laying down and my heart skips then thumps, my whole body jumps. It can be really uncomfortable at times. The only thing wich worries me is that I'm young(17 march 13th). Sometimes I also have chest pain, but it seems that the chest pain only comes when I move a certain way, so hopefuly it's just a pulled muscle. I rareley have palpitations when Im exercising wich I find odd. My resting heart rate is usually somewhere between 80 - 110.(Drops to around 65 when tired and raises to 135 when nervous). I've had an EKG performed and they told me that nothing is wrong with my heart. They also said that the heart sounds to be beating normal. Im just worried it's something serious, what are the chances of this being anything seriouis? My family has a background of panic disorder(Dad and mom's) and my dad had heart failure so he has a pacemaker.
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Postby ron122 » Sun Feb 27, 2005 12:29 am

I have had a similar problem for about 15 years and have never had any major health problems (with my heart or otherwise). Any time I have asked my doctor about it he has told me not to worry, but whenever anyone else takes my pulse, they always notice my 'irregular heart beat'.
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Postby cz3ch » Thu Mar 03, 2005 8:18 pm

Night owl wrote:Hi friends,

I have what are called PVC's--premature ventricular contractions. Basically, your heart skips a beat and then resumes beating normally until a minute or so later, when it happens again. It feels like a big thump in your chest. They sometimes disappear for a few months and then come back. I have been having them for nearly a month now and they are very annoying. But the doctors say that they are not dangerous. I was prescribed a drug called Tinormin (a beta blocker) that sometimes stops them and sometimes does not.

Does anyone else get these?

If so, what do you do about it?

Thanks.

Night Owl 8)


PVCs especially in Panic/Anxiety patients is extremely normal. Here are some things to try:

<li>Have a routine physical with EKG and ECHO to eliminate abonormalities... MVP (mitral valve prolapse, while being a benign murmur can cause anxiety symptoms and pvcs)
<li>Cut out caffiene completely
<li>Get more rest
<li>Get cardio in at least 3-5 days week
<li>Practice controlled breathing, abnormal respiration can cause a flux in oxygen leading to pvcs
<li>Get a second opinion about taking Tinormin or any other Beta Blocker. They are notorious for slowing your heart and droppig your blood pressure to dangerous levels if you don't need them. They also can make you gain weight since your metabolism slows down.
<li>If you are physically sound, see a mental healthcare professional. I just went to a Psychiatrist for the first time in years, and it was the best money I've spent.

Good luck
cz3ch
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Postby Jean » Thu Mar 10, 2005 9:56 pm

I have had PVC attacks for some time. I have found that when my potassium level is low that the episodes are more frequent. Perhaps you should check your level also.
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Postby Zero_Zeigar » Fri Mar 11, 2005 7:54 am

Since I've cut out caffein, I havnt had PVCs for almost a month now. I was so freakin scared when I was though. My heart specialist told me I probably cured myself because caffein causes your heart to send out extra singals wich makes your heart beat too soon, so your heart pauses for a second to ge back to it's normal beating habit. Try cutting out caffein.
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Postby SalinaC » Fri Mar 11, 2005 11:02 pm

hi my names Salina.
I got pregnant at 17. since the frist week of my pregnancy I'v had heart palpitations. Frist, the fast ones that my heart would get up to about 140 BMP. I don't remember how long they lasted but, it felt like for ever. And I would get them about 8 times a day. It was like this for the frist 3 months. Then I started getting PVC's. And that stayed with me. I've had all the test and they come back normal. All the doctors can see is that I'm having them. I've been in the hospital at least 5 times and one time they keeped me 3 days for observation. And since everytime I went, the blood tests came back low in potassium and megnesum. And they said that they didn't know why I wasn't holding them. And I must be not eating,making my self sick, or had the runs for days. And that never happened. Can some one out there please tell me if they know of this or anything. EVEN JUST TO TALK. I try to talk to my family and boyfriend but they can't understand how scary it is unless there going throu it . BUT GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF YOU AND YOU'LL BE FINE. CAUSE IF PALPITATIONS HAVEN'T KILLED ME YET THEN YOU'LL BE FINE.
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Postby jurplesman » Sun Mar 13, 2005 4:29 am

Hello ebverybody,

I can only repeat myself by saying that the hypoglycemic diet plus the vitamins and minerals will get you out of this mess, if doctors cannot find anything wrong with you.
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Postby cz3ch » Mon Mar 14, 2005 4:01 am

Jean wrote:I have had PVC attacks for some time. I have found that when my potassium level is low that the episodes are more frequent. Perhaps you should check your level also.


You are quite right. I was on a dieuretic for hypertension and I was hypokalemic. I had bad pvcs until i brought my potassium back up. I also body build too, so I have to supplement with it otherwise the pvcs come back.
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