Scary moments

Hi. Over the past few months when I have been in af for approx 20 hrs and due for sinus rhythm I am unable to feel a pulse I feel chest area warm up and have a cold sweat this usually happens when I first get out of bed in morning and have been doing usual things for few minutes then this comes over me. I have a pacemaker (AV node still intact) it should not let my pulse go below fifty but this is scary. Due 5 day heart monitor tomorrow. Even tho it would be heaven to be AF free for 5 days, I am hoping for full blast of it for recording.

Thanks for any info you can give me

13 Replies

  • I've had three moments when I couldn't feel a pulse and they are very scary. The cardiologist said I was mistaken when I described how it had felt to him and said I had a pulse but had not found it. The thing is, it felt as if there was no heartbeat. Just nothing.

  • Thanks for your reply rellim 296. That is exactly the feeling and I would think we are all experts at finding a pulse so its bad to be doubted. I am going to ask for a pacemaker reading. It will show up as it records dates and changes in heart rhythm. Will let you know.

    Thanks again. Sue N.

  • Hope that you will get some joy, Sue, even though one suspects that not having a pulse is not too good. I have a portable ECG machine - fits in a handbag easily - and I find it really useful to record any odd rhythm when it happens, but if you are pulseless (which they say you can't be) I doubt if it would show up and they would say you weren't using the machine properly!

    The first time I went astray I was not at all well - pale and wobbly, with very low blood pressure and my husband could not find my pulse. I got carted off to A & E and was fine and in NSR when I arrived, 23 miles later. Second time I didn't feel right but was standing and did not appear to be unwell, but feel my heart was absent for at least 30 seconds. I was very shaken! No further problems. Third time was momentary and again I was unnerved. Nobody medical has taken my descriptions seriously! They all happened the year before last and I've been fine since.

  • Sounds as if you have had frightening episodes and its frustrating not to be believed. Good thing we are made of strong stuff and carry on even though we get a scare. Hope you keep well and thanks. Sue N

  • It is weird isn't it, when you can't find a pulse at all.... Happened to me the first time I had AF and I have to say the only thing that comforted me was that whatever was happening I clearly was still alive! I guess it is just too faint to feel...

  • Yes, Eatsalottie, the scary thought is not so much what's happening but what will happen next and in fact I've gone back to having a pulse again.

  • It's a very odd feeling. I fell asleep that time so I wasn't awake when it went back into sinus, and it's not been that quiet since thank goodness :)

  • I had exactly the same with no pulse detectable, I did assure my husband that I definitely hadn't died. I have had 3 months AF free, but wonder when it might kick in again!

  • Well, I've been fine for the last 15 months! They were very odd episodes, but as Eatsalottie says we are clearly alive at the time. It just felt as if my heart was doing nothing - and then it picked up again.

  • Hi sunigirl..i have also had this and did faint. Luckily i was a patient in the coronary care unit when this happened. When i came to the nurse was saying "i can't find a pulse" and there was a defib machine beside me ( routine on CCU when someone collapses). But then another nurse felt my carotid pulse ( in neck) and said it was very strong...i was also clammy and cold..basically they explained that when someone goes cold amd clammy like that, the BP has dropped and all our blood has flowed to the vital organs shortterm to protect us, hence the pulse being hard to find in the wrist...could this be what is happening to you during these episodes? I hope you feel better soon. That sounds distressing for you.

  • Vonny Hi. Thank you so much.

    This sounds very likely to be what is happening. You have explained it really well and if it happens again I will feel for a pulse on my neck. I have 7 day monitor on now so weird as it sounds I hope it happens again this week while it is being recorded. Thanks.

    Sue N.

  • Yes i understand exactly how you feel wishing symptoms on when wearing a recorder. do you have a BP machine?...if you get another episode like this could someone with you take your BP and gently feel for your carotid pulse? But try not to so too much in case you do faint. Good luck with the monitor. Let us know what your medical team think these episodes might be. Sounds so unpleasant for you. you will be okay though. Wishing you wellness:)

  • We do have a BP machine. My husband has to keep a record of his every day as he has kidney failure and is on home dialysis. We haven't got a decent body part between us! Will take my BP if/when it happens again. I will let you know how things go.

    Best Wishes Sue N

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