Ectopic beats

Constant reassurance needed! I am getting ectopic beats off and on through every day. I saw my cardiologist this week,who didn't perform any tests, and said he felt sure they were ectopic beats . I had my first ablation last Nov, and he said this type of thing can be expected. So why do I still get so anxious about them? I think  I feel I need to know there's nothing life threatening going on that hasn't been diagnosed if I'm really honest.    I am taking bisoprolol and he said he would like me to come off it eventually and has recommended cutting my dose by half. Scared about this too! Wish I could just trust that it will get better and I could relax! 

12 Replies

  • I sympathise, I hate ectopics.  I had an awful time with them, they came out of the blue one day last July and stayed for months, continually till January.   They were constant all day every day 1000's of them a day according to seven day monitor.  They left as quickly as they began.   My ep did not seem concerned but did say they could trigger my af which I found disconcerting.

    I have some huge kicks especially in the mornings so hard that they make me yelp and physically take a step back as they are so strong.  I get a series of them usually post breakfast and post shower.  Perhaps they happen then as I am due for my meds at that time.  Whatever I loath and dread them every morning.  

    As regards to something else going on as you ask, I can only say my ep seems unconcerned so I have to trust him, but then it's not him experiencing them but he is the expert.  Ask yours for reassurance if they continue.  I understand your reticence re stopping meds.  Could you cut them down very very gradually to give your body a chance to adjust.  You may feel safer that way.

    Be well.

  • Hi meadfoot,

    I hate my ectopic "donkey kicks" as well - they do very occasionally trigger

    my AF. My ectopics also disappear as quickly as they arise but if they occur,

    few in a row, it is a totally unpleasant and disconcerting experience - despite cardiologist reassurance that all's ok.



  • Thanks. It is really helpful to know I'm not alone in this. I will talk about the reduction in medication too.

  • Like most of us, your problem is not the ectopics it is anxiety and that is what you need to try and come to terms with.

    Ectopics are quite normal but we AFers notice so much more that our hearts are doing.  I have several thousand a day according to my last 48 hour holter monitor but if I am busy or doing something interesting or with interesting people I don't notice them. The worst time is when trying to go to sleep of course when some strategy needs to be found to ignore them. They may well fade away soon. 

    Relax, try to get on with your life and I'm sure that you will soon feel much better.

     I was told once by a leading EP that they are actually a good sign as they show that the heart is trying to go into AF ---and failing!

  • Thanks. I am sure you are right about the anxiety. It seems such an uphill struggle at the moment but this kind of support is so helpful.

  • You might find that a portable ECG gadget like Alivecor/Kardia would reassure you. It enables you to do a short recording which shows what activity is going on.  Some people think that owning one encourages you to use it and get obsessive about it, but I find mine very useful.  Apart from letting me look at what my heart is doing when it goes off the rails (and I almost never use it otherwise) it also enables me to show any doctor what it records.

  • Thanks, I'll look into it.

  • I have always believed that anxiety experienced by people with arrythmias is not only a 'mind' thing but also physical - the article on Vagus Nerve post for me, supports this theory as the vagus nerve is the centre of the sympathetic/parasympathetic nervous system.  The way I came to terms with it is 1) attend to the worry thoughts and learn to calm myself 2) come to terms without the physical symptoms of the anxiety and just 'notice' them but then get on with other things 3) daily practice of relaxation techniques.

    Be reassured that these feelings are real, but benign.

  • Thanks. It is good to know someone out there understands!

  • Hi tessybear, I hate my ectopic "donkey kicks" as well - they do very occasionally trigger my Af. They are super unpleasant but my cardioman tells me all is ok....

    Interesting and reassuring what BobD said in his reply below - a leading EP once told him it is actually a good sign...



  • Thanks. I am really grateful for this support.

  • Your more than welcome :)

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