Hi, I just registered and had a question for you guys. I posted this yesterday on the anxiety boards and realized it was more of a heart issue (when my problem first started I thought it might be anxiety, now I don't think it's the cause, but probably is worsened by anxiety).
I am taking a beta blocker, Toprol XL 25 mg once a day for sinus tachycardia. I would have ST episodes, at first rarely (every 6 months) then becoming a little more frequent (every couple of months), then when I went to the Dr I had had 3 episodes in 2 weeks. They were often just out of the blue for no reason, but sometimes due to caffeine, which I know I shouldn't have, and then I would get scared and panic/anxiety would prolong it and make it worse. My resting heart rate was fairly high, usually around 90, but ranging from 85-100. During the ST episodes it would range from 120-150.
So they ran the whole battery of tests, blood work for thyroid, EKG, echo, holter monitor, and just found sinus tachycardia- everything was normal, rhythm, valves, etc, just fast. So first they prescribed regular metoprolol 25 mg twice a day. It worked great for my heart rate, but I started having insomnia and started cutting my pills down, first to 3/4, then to 1/2 and taking melatonin and it helped. They went ahead and switched me to Toprol XL (25 mg), which is extended release, that they thought might help with the insomnia (Yesterday was my first day on it so we'll see! I still took the melatonin and slept fine).
Anyway, enough of the long background story! My real question was, although the BB is working well and I am happy with it for the most part, I just have this weird aversion to taking medicine and would kind of like to get off of it. Part of me likes the "security blanket" of not having to worry about ST, but I would like to have the option to quit if I wanted. I asked my Dr. if the BB could be taken on an "as-needed" basis, just when I felt an attack coming on and he said no. But I don't really understand why not. I know people take it for stage fright, so it can be taken on a one-time basis, it doesn't need to build up or anything, and also when I took my first dose, it slowed my heart down within a half hour, so it seems like it would work, when I have an attack of ST, to take a BB to stop it. Would it not stop tachycardia once it had started? Do any of you guys have any insight? I feel like this would work and since I generally didn't have the ST very often, I didn't know if it was worth it to take meds every day for something that happens once every few months. But the doctors don't seem to like that idea. Also a related question- I guess if I was to try that, the regular metoprolol would be better because it is released immediately, rather than the Toprol XL that is extended release?
Thanks, and sorry this was so long! I appreciate any advice anyone has.