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Old 06-11-2005, 09:00 AM   #1
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Mr. Strangeheart HB User
Unhappy Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

Hi,

It has been a while since I posted on here. I suffer from some type of undiagnosed auto-immune disease. It seems to have many characteristics of some type of connective tissue disease like lupus or scleroderma. I have had it now for four years but my blood tests are always normal. I have been diagnosed with raynaud's, a hyper-dynamiac heart, and heart arrhythmias but I have many other symptoms as well (esophagus spasms, slow emptying stomach, digestive problems, overall cold sensitivity, numbness, and many others).

Anyway, I have had heart arrhythmias since this all started 3 or 4 years ago and they just keep getting worse with time. I am on Toprol which has helped slow them down but the frequency and variety of different arrhythmias keeps increasing. Two years ago I wore an event monitor and all they caught was sinus tachycardia, SVT, PVC's and PAC's. Now I am wearing an event monitor and they have caught: sinus bradycardia, PAC's, atrial couplets, atrial triplets, atrial runs, wide complex tachycardia, PVC's, accelerated junctional rhythm PAC's, ventricular bigeminy, ventricular couplet, accelerated ventricular rhythm. My cardiologist says the wide complex tachycardia could be in fact ventricular tachycardia. Eeeeks! That is pretty scary - I though V-tach was BAD news but my doctors are downplaying it - especially since I had a normal echo a year ago and a normal stress test just the other day.

I am just wondering if there is anyone else out there who can relate to any of this - the variety of palpitations, the possible v-tac, and the autoimmune stuff.

Thanks. Hope to hear from you.

 
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Old 06-17-2005, 05:03 PM   #2
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arrest04 HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

I have PVC's, bigeminy, multifocal PVC, v-tach, and occasional PAC. I also had Raynaud disease when I was younger, my fingers would swell when I touched something cold or it was cold outside. It seems as though I do not have that anymore. I have not been told I had an autoimmune disease, however I have all of these unexplained rhythms. I am 23 years old. I had a cardiac arrest june 2004. my echo and stress test was normal before my arrest and when I went into v-tach. Just make sure you are on some strong medication to suppress those arrythmias!! I'm interested in this autoimmune disease......is that linked to your arrrythmias?

 
Old 06-18-2005, 01:36 AM   #3
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Caroliz HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

I too am on the same freighter. It sure is not the Cruise ship Cardio doc is sending me to a Rheumatologist as I have a lot of unexplained things going on with me..including all the tummy problems, dry mouth, dry eyes, aches and pains and now the dang heart. My echo's were normal and I suffered a heart event last week. My 30 day monitor showed a lot of various rhtyms but the doc downplayed these and lo and behold the big arrythmia (A-FIB) came knocking on my door as an uninvited guest and would not leave. Spent a few days in the hospital.

Took me off TopolXL50mg and has me on Sotolol and Verapermil now. So far I do not care for the side effects of this meds but doc hopes the side effects will go away shortly.

Good Luck To You both.

 
Old 06-18-2005, 08:12 PM   #4
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Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

Thanks for reponding Caroliz and Arrest04,

Eeeeks, you are scaring me now Arrest04. A normal stress test and normal echo and you went into cardiac arrest! Where were you at the time? How did you survive it? You are too young to deal with this stuff. I feel I am too young and I am in my 40's so you are definitely too young! You asked about the autoimmune connection. Well, I must say that I have not been diagnosed with any autoimmune disease but nevertheless I know I have one! The doctors like to blame it on anxiety or a myriad of other things but I know the truth because I am the one living inside this body. The fact of the matter is that some of the autoimmune diseases are extremely difficult to diagnose. The blood tests do not work in everyone and some people take years before they have a diagnosis. I hate to say this but according to what I have read, apparently some people do not live to see a diagnosis either.

As far as my situation, I suffer from the following ongoing symptoms: overall cold sensitivity, "raynaud's" in my hands and feet, heart palpitations, hard and fast beating heart, and skin that acts differently (gets red and irritated easily and "dents" in more than it used to under pressure). Then I have the symptoms that come and go: numbness in different areas, dry eyes, blurred vision, irritable bowel, debilitating fatigue, acid reflux, slow-emptying stomach, esophagus spasm and swallowing discomfort, etc. etc. etc. I believe I have some type of inflammation going on inside my body that is causing my blood vessels to constrict but my blood tests for inflammation (and everything else for that matter) are always negative. Nevertheless, it certainly acts like inflammation and you know the old saying "If it looks like a duck and sounds like a duck then it probably IS a duck"! Anyway, they did vascular testing on me and documented a significant reduction in blood flow in my hands and feet so they slapped a "raynaud's" diagnosis on me. But it does not act like raynaud's as it is present ALL the time and it affects other areas of my body too (not just hands and feet).

I am just about convinced I have scleroderma or something similar to it but the docs say "no." I hope they are right but so many of my symptoms correspond to scleroderma - heart arrhythmias, acid reflux, irritable bowel, "raynaud's", overall cold sensitivity, swallowing discomfort, etc. I sound like I must be in terrible shape but the reality is that overall I do not feel that bad. I have a lot of symptoms that annoy me but overall I feel pretty good. I am just very afraid of these heart complications and need to get some answers. And I get so tired of my heart doing weird things. It would be so nice to have just a normal heart that did what it was supposed to and that I could just take for granted again!

Well, I have gone on here long enough. I hope there is some information here that is helpful to you. I appreciate your advice on controlling the palpitations. I am on 150 mg's of Toprol a day and it works pretty good overall but still I have had tachycardia up to 170+ on my monitor a couple weeks ago. I will see a cardiologist in a couple weeks and hopefully get some direction on all this.

I'd appreciate staying in touch with both you two (Caroliz and Arrest04) if you don't mind. Let's look for one another in this and subsequent posts. It helps to stay in touch with others who are in a similar situation. Caroliz, do you know what other types of arrhythmias you have had? Have you had V-tach at all? If you don't know, you should find out. If I had not asked for copies of all my tracings from my event monitor, I would not have known half of what I actually had recorded because they hardly told me anything.

Thanks and let's stay in touch....Strangeheart

 
Old 06-18-2005, 08:27 PM   #5
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Mr. Strangeheart HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

Hello Again Arrest04,

I just read your earlier post and I understand much more about your situation. Also, after I got done babbling on and on about myself, I realized that I probably did not answer your question very adequately. Some types of autoimmune diseases can affect the heart. Connective tissue diseases particularly can affect the heart. And connective tissue diseases commonly cause or co-exist with raynauds. Given your history of raynauds and now heart problems, you should see a rheumatologist and have a full work-up done to look for autoimmune connective tissue diseases (like lupus, scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. etc.). This is very important for you to do if you have not already done so! It c-o-u-l-d be the cause for your heart problems.

-Strangeheart.

 
Old 06-18-2005, 09:15 PM   #6
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arrest04 HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

Thank you for your post..... I never mean to scare, I just want others to be aware. I will look into seeing a rheumatologist.... i have always been told I had a "virus" or cardiomyopathy, but I feel like there is more. Keep me posted.

 
Old 06-19-2005, 02:41 AM   #7
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Caroliz HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

I am not sure if V-Tach was included in a DX of the 30 day Event Monitor print out. I know upper chambers of the Atrium had irregularities but not sustained like the A-FIB was a few weeks back. I do have all the copies of the 30 day monitor sitting in my stack here.

There are so many diseases classed uner 'auto immune' and connective tissue disorders. One that my doc mentioned to me was Sarcoidosis. My DDS said Sjgroens but Sarcoid can cause the dry eyes/mouth also.

I have tested positive to both thyroid antibodies and positive for Hashimotos thyroiditis. Once a person has one autoimmune disease....others can follow.

I recently bought the book, "The Autoimmune Connection". I found it to be very helpful.

 
Old 06-19-2005, 06:36 AM   #8
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Mr. Strangeheart HB User
Re: Many Different Arrhythmias/Maybe V-tac/Autoimmune Connection

Thanks again Arrest04 and Caroliz,

Arrest04 - I appreciate what you told me. I keep hearing again and again that v-tach in a healthy heart is generally nothing to worry about...but there are always exeptions to the rule in medicine. So, thanks to your experience I will be asking some tougher questions of my docs. Good luck with the rheumy. Please let us know how it turns out.

Caroliz - Thanks for mentioning the book - I will have to check into that. You are right, there are many CTD's - even ones without names. That is great you have all your results. I am always amazed at some of the things the docs have not told me that I end up finding on the actual reports. Did you have anything called "wide complex tachycardia" shown on your event monitor reports? I had one tracing that they called a "wide complex tachycardia" and that is the one that apparently is usually v-tach.

Thanks again. I appreciate talking to you folks...

 
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