I was diagnosed with Inappropriate Sinus Tachycardia today. I had a 30-day auto-capture event monitor, which recorded almost daily events where my heart rate would spike to 180+ with no exertion whatsoever. My resting heart rate is always 120-130. The odd thing is, I have NEVER been aware of my heart rate at all... Even when my heart is racing, I don't "feel" it beating in my chest or anything like that. No chest pain, dizziness, etc. I only went to get my heart checked out because I used at heart rate monitor at the gym and it was giving me readings of 215. I've been reading about others who experience rapid heart rates like mine, and everyone else seems to be aware of when their heart is racing. I actually find myself thinking there must have been some sort of error with the event monitor, because I am so baffled as to how my heart rate could get that high without me even noticing.
Anyway, couple of questions....
When my doctor diagnosed me, I asked him if this was something I could just live with and forego treatment since I don't experience any bothersome symptoms. He said no, it is something that really does require treatment because it was harmful to my heart even if I wasn't experiencing any obvious symptoms. Everything I have read though makes it sound like IST isn't going to kill me if left untreated... Are there possible long-term negative side effects of living with a heart rate that high?
Also, I've gotten the impression that ablation is only considered if the IST is non-responsive to medications. However, my Doctor said that he doesn't like the side effects of beta blockers and would just rather do ablation first, without trying any medications. I am all for this because I don't like the idea of having to take a beta blocker for the rest of my life if ablation could offer a permanent fix (well, maybe semi-permanent). Has anyone else skipped the medication route and just gone straight to ablation?
I had an ablation a handful of years ago, and I'm telling you it was a piece of cake!
Ultimately it didn't solve all of my arrythmia issues so I went on a calcium channel blocker (as opposed to a beta blocker) and since then I haven't been to the ER, which is a GREAT thing.
Even if you are not suffering, having your heart pumping that hard is not great for it in the long term.
The Following User Says Thank You to slenderella For This Useful Post: gracee06 (05-03-2012)
Thank you. Wow, that really put it in to perspective. I'm only 24, so I was really hoping I could just wait it out and see if it resolved on its own without any treatment. It's been going on for at least 6 months that I've been aware of though, so I guess it is time to do something about it.
The ablation procedure doesn't really seem all that bad; in fact, I would prefer it over having to take a medication for the rest of my life. I was worried though that the ablation wouldn't completely solve the issue and I'd end up on meds anyway. I think I was being a bit too optimistic in hoping that the procedure would be a one time thing and that it would permanently solve my heart issue. It seems that most people are like you, treatment has consisted of ablation AND meds, not just one or the other. I'm still coming to terms with the fact that this could likely be a lifelong issue for me
Thank you for your response though. Very helpful, as I am still learning about all of this.
... I was worried though that the ablation wouldn't completely solve the issue and I'd end up on meds anyway.
Your chances for a successful ablation depend upon the skills of your cardiologist and the complexity of your heart's electrical problem.
An ablation attempts to block the location or locations of your heart's abnormal electrical impulses. The better the cardiologist and his staff, the better expected results.
Sometimes it takes more than one attempt at ablation before "all" abnormal pathways are blocked.
my Doctor said that he doesn't like the side effects of beta blockers and would just rather do ablation first, without trying any medications.
Have you been put on any medications? Have you considered going on a medication to see how well it worked, or how bad the side effects? If the side effects were too nasty or uncomfortable you could always get off of the medication, under your doctor's supervision, and then try another type of medication.
Most medications that attempt to slow down the heart also slow down the patient. I take the beta blocker Coreg (Carvedilol), which I LOVE! But it does make me feel very tired, especially in the morning. I am retired, so being tired during the morning hours isn't too big a deal.
Beta Blockers and Calcium Channel Blockers (like Verapamil), also lower the blood pressure. So.... if your blood pressure is already kinda low, these medication might not be suitable for you. Another inexpensive medication to consider is Digoxin, which slows down the heart without lowering the blood pressure, and which has been around for hundreds of years.
Best of luck making this big decision. Remember, though, that usually, it doesn't usually cost any more to get the best cardiologist you can find.
I haven't tried any medications yet. My blood pressure is borderline low, so I think that is one of the reasons why my doctor is wanting to avoid beta blockers. I'm also only 24 and the tiredness and fatigue are big things that I have to deal with already; I can't imagine taking something that would increase those side effects. I will ask my doctor about Digoxin though, thanks for the suggestion!
Im 25 and had two ablations within two weeks of each other for psvt. And then for atrial tach.. I have never felt worse.. Dizzy, palpitations, chest pain. With my heart rate going as high as 160. Now they want to do another ablation its only been two months since my last one. Now im on a new beta blocker and im miserable when i take it i can barely keep my eyes open. However i am extremely hesitant to get yet another ablation which no one is sure will work or not. Im stuck between a rock and hard place. So i would think long and hard before you get an ablation as it may make your problems worse. I was okay before no dizziness or chest pain. Just a fast heart rate that didn't respond to meds.. Now my life has changed i can no longer do the things i was doing previously. None the less i dont have many options beside another ablation. As i do not want to stay on meds that dont work forever. Best of luck and do lots of research.. I am