More ectopic beats

So I've had a good few months as far as my AF is concerned. I've become less anxious about my condition and have kind of accepted it as just being there.

Recently though, within the past week or so, I have been noticing ectopic beats again, and when I say ectopic beats I mean I can definitely feel them in my chest and it causes me to 'jolt', I'm sure most of you are familiar with this feeling.

I'm actually awaiting results of a 48 hour monitor I had fitted around a month ago so I suppose I'll wait and see what the results are for that. But it's strange how I'm suddenly feeling these ectopic beats again. I was thinking maybe its because my lifestyle is kind of all over the place at the moment, and I have been feeling a little stressed, but certainly not unhappy. Does anyone else find that emotional instability, or lifestyle changes causes ectopics to increase? I really don't know what to make of this recent bout.



14 Replies

  • Definitely my ectopics are hugely affected by worry stress emotion etc. My GP set me up with, in effect, an experiment by giving me some anti anxiety pills to take as PIP during an attack, and they worked, so proving the point.

  • Ps I think Dr Sanjay Gupta has done youtube videos on stress and ectopics?

  • I find if I'm tearing about I def get them. Not anxious but a lot on. I've started on Hawthorne recently to see if it helps but of course if you're in AF then must take anti coags too.

    Good luck. They are not nice those pesky ectopics

  • Hi mic wal,

    Yes, understand exactly how you feel.

    Any extra rushing around for me, or trying to do anything that involves "beating the clock" time wise brings on these beats.

    As much as I can I try and plan ahead, which means less stress and more "calm time" for achieving things,

    But sometimes, even when I feel calm and everything's ok with the world there they are again! Guess it's just the mystery of Af? 😊

  • For me I am not sure if they are really increasing when I have anxiety or are stressed of if I just notice them more. My sensitivity increases if I am stressed or start to have anxiety. Chicken and egg here really. Anxiety or stress can make you more sensitive to feeling them as well as increase them. If I am feeling OK I don't take my pulse so often so they fade into the background. It just takes something quite small a little stress or rushing around or having the grandchildren, who I love dearly but there is stress associated with this, to set of the pattern again and then it takes a while to calm down again. Be very careful if you are taking benzodiazepines, I say this from experience.

  • I think that we are all very "heart aware." When I first read about ectopic beats on this site I honestly didn't know what they were and had no experience of them. This year, 2 years post-ablation. I have felt sudden runs of thuds. It's quite alarming and so far they do not herald the start of AF.

  • Yes Dr Sanjay Gupta has some You tub videos on ectopic, and very good that are too.

  • Yes - with me too, worrying about them also seems to make them worse.

    There is a link on the forum about two months ago to Dr Gupta's video on stopping ectopics. He advises slowing your breathing to 6 breaths per minute for a minimum of 5 minutes. Not only does this exercise stop my ectopics, I find it very calming and relaxing.

    Definitely worth a try - I loll in an armchair and count which helps concentration.


    This is the link I mentioned.

  • Ectopics are in my experience related to stress and anxiety and it without doubt becomes a vicious circle of "thinking about them, the more you get...the more you get the more you think about them...etc" As we have or have had AF we are very much heart aware whereas most people get them and many don' know it.

    Similar to Jennydog, I also had an ablation just over two years ago and have recently been experiencing many more ectopics including some "runs" of them that last up to about 20 seconds. I don't know if there is a reason for the sudden increase and whether these are in fact short runs of AF. - I hope not!

    I made a private appointment with my EP and have had a 48 hour monitor last week to find out exactly what is going on.

  • Hi, I have bouts of good times when I don't actually think of my heart but if I'm stressed I feel ectopic beats which as you describe cause a jolt in my chest.

    I was fitted with a 5 day monitor and hopefully this will have picked something up as it's a hard thing to describe. I have also monitored them on my Alivcor which I took to my cardiologist. I'm just waiting for an appointment to see what the results are.

    I have just come back from a holiday where I was able to think, relax and practice mindfulness and felt really good. I am trying hard not to get stressed but life happens eh!

    I hope you feel well again very soon

  • Stress and anxiety definitely cause me to have ectopic beats in fact just reading about them starts my chest to tighten up. Relaxation is the answer for me!! :-) :-)

  • I've not thought of it that way, but, yes I started having ectopics around the time that my wife and I separated around 7 years ago. At first they were just mild and just now and again. Now they can run all day (mainly when at rest ). They have got to a strength where they bend me over and hurt quite a bit. I don't get too worried about things normally but, when they go on too long, then I worry. My EP says he can't do anything about them. Dave

  • I find more triggers as time goes on, changes in routine definitely affect me, just about finding coping mechanisms

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