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Anxiety and heart palpitations

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Old 08-06-2006, 07:38 PM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: California
Posts: 9
Wynslett HB User
Unhappy Anxiety and heart palpitations


Newcommer to the boards, I'm glad I found this board. Where do I begin? My father passed away in April, and I've been having a terrible time dealing with his loss. I'm going to seek assistance from a grief counselor, but that's a whole different story. When I found out about his illness in late March, I began having heart palpitations. Mostly while I was doing a physical activity, something as easy as bowling, I'd feel an occasional flip flop. After his dealth, they came more frequently. Mostly they happen now without being exercise induced, they will happen when I'm sitting watching TV or reading, etc. They feel either like my heart litterally did a somersault or occasionally it would take off and feel like it was "galloping". I went to my Dr. in May and she did an in office EKG, everything looked fine she said. She thought it was anxiety over the loss of my father and gave me a few xanax to see if it helped. The palps stopped after taking the xanax off and on when I was feeling anxious. She only gave me 10 xanax at the time, so I felt it must have been stress/anxiety/depression related. Well, over the past week, the palps have returned with avengeance. They alternate between the flip flops and the galloping feeling. Sometime I feel a squeezing sensation in my chest that lasts for a split second, but have not been able to determine if that is actually a palp or not. I sit for hours on end with my fingers to my neck waiting for the next skip, or squeeze. It's driving me crazy and making my anxiety worse. I started taking the xanax again, but doesn't seem to help with the anxiety over these palps. I'm overweight by about 50 pounds, and have been trying to exercise to help with the weight and depression. Today after exercise, my heart got to really flip flopping to the point where I felt like I needed to cough to get it back on track. So here I sit now, convinced I have a serious heart condition. Friends/family say it's stress/anxiety, all part of the grieving process, blah blah blah. I would love for it to be "all in my head" but am not so sure anymore. Does my story sound similar to anyone's? I'm feeling as though I'm all alone, and I'm really really scared that something's really wrong. I'm only 38 and I want to be around for a very long time. I still have things to do. I have diabetes too, and I feel like all of my health problems are starting to close in on me. I've made another appointment with my Dr for Tuesday, but I'm convinced she must think I'm a lunatic as my EKG and all my bloodwork have came back fine. Someone tell me I'm not alone! Can anyone relate to this problem as a result of anxiety and/or depression issues? Thanks for listening,

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Old 08-06-2006, 08:29 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,104
tnmomofive HB User
Re: Anxiety and heart palpitations

Hi Beth im Beth too!
I have the skips,quivers,flipflops and so on off and on.I wore a holter monitor for a while and it recorded some cardiologist said "Just some PVC's nothing of real concern" PVC's are premature ventricular contractions.You can look that up most of the time harmless to you and your heart.Alot of people have them and they have healthy hearts.This could all be from anxiety it really can.I would probably ask my doctor about a holter monitor or event recorder though to be sure.Theres not much to these tests they are like wearing a portable EKG for several days or weeks.Holter monitor you just wear it thats it event recorder you push a button everytime you feel a symptom and write in the little diary what you were doing at the time and what you felt.I think maybe if you had one of these and it caught some flip flops or something this might ease your mind.I am so sorry about your loss and I hope counseling will help you.

Old 08-07-2006, 07:12 AM   #3
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 385
CircusSquirrel HB User
Re: Anxiety and heart palpitations

I've had these since age 14 (now 31). They started right after my beloved grandmother died of a long battle with heart disease (she was in her late 70s, so not a big surprise, but nonetheless devastating for me). I go through periods of having them a lot, a little bit, or hardly at all. Sometimes they come when I'm running, sometimes when I take a deep breath, sometimes when I lie down to sleep. Some days I have 10, some days none. Before I was on a beta-blocker medication and an anxiety medication, I had a few nights when I had them all night long! I know other people from real life anxiety groups and other online groups who have them very frequently, like every hour of every day. They're ALL ok. If you've been checked out and your heart is sound, these things won't hurt you. Nearly every human being alive has them. Like the above poster said, if you really need more reassurance, you could go to a cardiologist and he or she would likely prescribe a monitor to wear to record some of the beats and have the tracings analyzed. This is a VERY common symptom of anxiety. Many people have been set off on the anxiety path by heart "skips". The less you let them scare you, the less scary they become. Take care.

Old 08-07-2006, 07:51 AM   #4
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,104
tnmomofive HB User
Re: Anxiety and heart palpitations

Thats me I have them here and there and then I have long periods of having them all night long.I have had some while laughing before that freaked me out till I found out they were harmless.

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