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1/22/2020 12:12:56 PM
Posted: 9/16/2009 7:33:06 PM EST
Hey all,

Could use a little help here, pick some medical type brains, if y'all can spare a moment or two...

I have a friend, 22 y/o female, otherwise healthy, no mental history at all...

She has what we've been told is a *minor* heart issue. PACs I believe it's called ? Premature Atrial Contractions (?)

She's been having numerous bouts of fatigue, sometimes coupled with chest pain recently... well, for some time now.

She had to go to the ER tonight because of it. Trouble breathing this time too. This isn't unusual. Happens a lot. We thought maybe asthma for a while, but apparently not...

She went to a clinic a few weeks ago and they did a resting 12 lead EKG (pretty sure that's the one) And they saw the PACs.

So far, nobody seems to have a clue what could be wrong, and causing the shortness of breath, and chest pains, along with the fatigue, beyond the PAC's... The ER did another EKG tonight and they said they didn't think trouble breathing was related.


She's a poor college kid and I'd take her to the best Doc's around, if I could afford it, but I just cant....

Right now, she's back AT school, two states away, so that compounds the difficulty in getting anything done...


Any cardiologists or neurologists have any input into what might be going on ? Or maybe what ELSE might be ?

It kills me to see her suffering like this, and I feel so freaking helpless to do anything for her...

If any of you have any thoughts you could share, I'd be hugely in your debt...

Just don't know what to do...

Thanks...

John
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 1:44:32 AM EST
morning bump
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:14:01 AM EST
Originally Posted By JB69:


She has what we've been told is a *minor* heart issue. PACs I believe it's called ? Premature Atrial Contractions (?)



PAC's and PVC's can be entirely normal depending on their frequency. Caffeine and other stimulants can increase them so she should cut those out. Psychological stress and poor sleep can also worsen them.

A 24 hour holter monitor, exercise stress test and echocardiogram would be nice to have. She's not eligible for her parents' insurance plan as a student?

Brain problems can very rarely cause cardiac arrhythmias but not PAC's.

Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:23:02 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/17/2009 2:27:02 AM EST by Dr_Dickie]
I "suffer" from PVCs. Suffer for what I have is not the right word. Annoying, yes, but that is about all.
They first showed up when I was getting ready to graduate from college––stress. I thought for sure I was a goner.
When to see a cardiologist before I told my family about my impending death. Had a PVC right there as he was listening to my heart.
Turns out my father (a physician) has the same thing, stress induced PVC––damn annoying as hell.
They still crop up now and again, usually associated with stress. Never had any effect on my stamina or ability to do anything, just annoying.
I have had them for more than 20 years.
JUST discovering that the annoying heart stopping (what a PVC feels like) followed by heavy pump, was benign made mine almost completely disappear for some time. The stress of contemplating my imminent demise was making the PVCs worse, which was while I was stressing in the first place.
From what you are writing, that sounds like a whole lot more that what I ever had from PVCs.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:26:26 AM EST
I get PVCs...sometimes they suck...most of the time they don't bother me much though. I assume that they did labs on her to check her thyroid and her blood sugar?

Is she getting enough sleep? Does she drink caffeine
? Stress?


Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:26:39 AM EST
Panic attacks most likely in a 22 y/o.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:30:12 AM EST
With Chest Pain, Abnormal EKG, and difficulty breathing, most ER Docs would probably admit her for serial AMIs, and probably a stress test at minimum.

Chest Pain is pretty serious specially for a 22 year old.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:31:04 AM EST

Originally Posted By Dr_Dickie:
JUST discovering that the annoying heart stopping (what a PVC feels like) followed by heavy pump, was benign made mine almost completely disappear for some time. The stress of contemplating my imminent demise was making the PVCs worse, which was while I was stressing in the first place.


This was the case for me as well. I made the mistake of listening to my heart with a stethoscope before I went to se the Dr.
Oh crap my heart is stopping I must be going to die! I was getting multiple PVCs per minute and was my heartrate was in the "way to f'n fast" range.
Thankfully they caught a few on ECG, did some labs, and said "You are fine".
Now I don't worry about them much and get them with far less frequency.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 2:33:27 AM EST
Originally Posted By C-4:
Originally Posted By JB69:


She has what we've been told is a *minor* heart issue. PACs I believe it's called ? Premature Atrial Contractions (?)



PAC's and PVC's can be entirely normal depending on their frequency. Caffeine and other stimulants can increase them so she should cut those out. Psychological stress and poor sleep can also worsen them.

A 24 hour holter monitor, exercise stress test and echocardiogram would be nice to have. She's not eligible for her parents' insurance plan as a student?

Brain problems can very rarely cause cardiac arrhythmias but not PAC's.



She's gotten rid of caffeine already. No chocolate, coffee, etc anymore... Does alcohol affect this as well ? She doesn't drink a lot. God knows she probably doesn't sleep as well as she should. College, plus a job and all that... Also stressed a little about school. I have absolutely no doubt that isn't helping things.

Her mother's been out of work for a while on comp from an injury, (father's deceased) and her insurance co has been constantly trying to fuck them out of coverage, claiming she's not a full time student and other assorted bullshit... it's ridiculous. This is a huge part of the problem as you can imagine, since addressing this stuff does NOT come cheap...

I'll try and get any other info you or anyone else thinks might be at all insightful...

Thanks so much for replying.

Link Posted: 9/17/2009 4:19:19 AM EST
A rare cause of cardiac related death in younger people can be related to cocaine use, but it doesn't sound like thats an issue here.

Agree with caffeine, stress or thyroid possiblities.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 4:41:20 AM EST
She needs to see a cardiologist. Anything else posted in this thread is internet conjecture as to what is causing the PACs.
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 4:52:50 AM EST

Originally Posted By ZootTX:
She needs to see a cardiologist.



Link Posted: 9/17/2009 4:53:49 AM EST
Originally Posted By C-4:
Originally Posted By JB69:


She has what we've been told is a *minor* heart issue. PACs I believe it's called ? Premature Atrial Contractions (?)



PAC's and PVC's can be entirely normal depending on their frequency. Caffeine and other stimulants can increase them so she should cut those out. Psychological stress and poor sleep can also worsen them.

A 24 hour holter monitor, exercise stress test and echocardiogram would be nice to have. She's not eligible for her parents' insurance plan as a student?

Brain problems can very rarely cause cardiac arrhythmias but not PAC's.




That will be the way to go....
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 5:03:51 AM EST
[Last Edit: 9/17/2009 5:04:35 AM EST by TRMP]
I have PVC's and PAC's.

I have undergone a stress test, echocardiogram, CT scan,24 hr Holter, 72 hour event monitor, and numerous doctor visits because I was 100% sure I was going to die/had a sick heart. I am totally fine.

Turns out my shortness of breath/dizziness, sharp chest pains, rib cage soreness, and flip flopping in my chest was PVC's/PAC's coupled with panic attacks (because I was pretty sure it was game over when it was every other beat)

Things that bring those symptoms on are:

STRESS
caffeine
Lack of sleep
Alcohol in excess
Too many simple carbohydrates (sugar/bread/pasta)

Best to go to the cardiologist first, then worry about how to alleviate the sensations....
Link Posted: 9/17/2009 6:04:22 AM EST
Originally Posted By SevenMaryThree:

Originally Posted By ZootTX:
She needs to see a cardiologist.







Really appreciate all the replies...

Obviously she needs to see a cardiologist...


I'm looking for some insight here.

It's a pretty distressing thing to know and see someone who is otherwise so vibrant and upbeat get knocked down by this.

Not to mention how scary it is to see in action...


I'm trying to understand this and what might help lessen the severity of the attacks for her.

This is a big forum, there's ALWAYS someone here who's been through anything and can offer some thoughts, not to mention the actual doctors here, who selflessly give their time, sitting here replying. You know this place as well as I do. We've both been here for some time. The been there, done that, power of this place is strong. There's always something useful to be taken away from folks here who take that time to try and offer some thoughts...

Anything I can glean from them has the potential to help her and I'm grateful for it..


Link Posted: 9/18/2009 6:48:25 AM EST
bump again for anybody else who might have some thoughts...
Link Posted: 9/19/2009 6:14:04 AM EST
saturday bump, for whatever it's worth
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