Slow heart rate (in 50s): Hi there, My heart... - AF Association

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Slow heart rate (in 50s)

micwal93 profile image

Hi there,

My heart rate has always been kind of low, and I'd often catch it in the 50's, especially when laying down. Recently I've become a little worried about it, having measured it at only 50bpm earlier on.

I've read that AF can sometimes manifest as a slow heart rate, but I don't know whether this is rare or not. Does anyone else have a low resting heart rate (normally between 50-65 whilst laying down)?

I should also note that I am awaiting results from a 48-hour heart monitor, and that I take Propranolol as a pill in the pocket measure. However, I have been taking Propranolol pretty much every day, a fairly low dose at 10mg, and is not the slow release pill, so I am unsure whether its efficacy would continue over the course of several hours.


30 Replies

My resting rate is 45/55

50 65 is .this is my normal range when i dont have AF

My resting hb is 40/48

Just done mine 33bpm and I have af when I walk around 65 sport 120 plus I've always had a slow heart but played a lot of sport

seasider18 profile image
seasider18 in reply to Geza10

It's a wonder they don't suggest a pacemaker.

Mine was mostly happy in the mid 40's for years. My seven day ECG showed some 36 bpm during the night along with 3.5 second pauses and they said that I needed a pacemaker.

Another patient that day had been found as a surgical pre assessment to have a 26 bpm heart rate.

Geza10 profile image
Geza10 in reply to seasider18

Im lucky still play football 3 times a week feel ok even with a slow beat been checked out, am 59 on apixaban but a chad score 0, AF is the concern but getting used to it after 6 years tried 1 ablation lasted a year ill wait till there is a better option as for a pacemaker maybe in the future my heart does pause for a couple of seconds about every 20 beats but the mr grace said not to be concerned hope it all works out for you seasider18

What worries you about your heart rate being in the fifties? If you feel you have plenty of energy, does it matter if you are ticking over slowly? My resting rate is in the fifties and was slower before I had an ablation. I once mentioned that I had always had cold feet and my GP, finding my heart rate was in the 40s, halved my beta blocker but I had no other problem with a slow rate.

seasider18 profile image
seasider18 in reply to Rellim296

My marathon running GP is proud of his 40's heart rate.

Normal resting heart rate is between 60 and 100 bpm. Medicine can lower it (beta blockers etc) and regular exercise can lower it (cycling etc). I wouldn't be worried about being in the 50s unless it's affecting your life (tiredness etc). Even then other things can cause tiredness, including medicine, age, etc. Try not to worry.

Hidden profile image

Normal resting is 52 to 66. On beta blockers it's about 40 and I feel awful.

Normal moving around is about 80 to 90 and exercise up to about 126.

On beta blockers hr rarely goes above 60 unless I'm in fast AF

My heart rate is never much more than 50 - 55. I has been as low as 36 when I am in bed. I do of course take Beta Blockers but I certainly don't think it's anything to worry about.

My cardiologist says I have a low heart rate mid 50 s saying that's good but a beta blocker will lower it and may make you light headed .I have exercised all my life though.

Hi my heart rate knock around 48-54 when active then jumps up to the 130s im diagonosed with paf just keep intouch with you cardiologist if it is causing you concern

My resting pulse rate was 55-60, until I started taking Bisoprolol,2.5 mg and now it is around 38-44. I don't feel I get any symptoms from this - but when I tried decreasing to 1.25 mg I felt I was getting more flutters, and as I was going to be away for 3 weeks where medical help not to hand and it was inevitably a bank holiday weekend evening I phoned 111. The doctor said not to let your heart beat go below 45. I didn't ask for further explanation - I wish I had. Has anyone else been told this and knows why?

I notice the notes with Bisoprolol say it shouldn't be prescribed to people whose normal heart rate is below 60.

Hidden profile image
Hidden in reply to Barb385

I found that when my heart rate, lowered by Bisoprolol went below 40 bpm I would get Atrial Flutter and, later after ablation, Atrial Fibrilliation some time in the night.

On Amiodarone my heart rate at night goes down to around 53 bpm/54 bpm and I am fine and not worried as it does not trigger AFib. During the day 64 bpm - 7 +.

I don't think you need to worry.

Take care and try not to worry.


It can be normal in some people to have a low resting heart rate as long as it changes with certain activity and is regular

its also normal for the heart rate to drop lower in sleep

Athletes have a lower heart rate and sone poeple who are quite fit

My resting heart rate is around 56 doing yoga can drop to 50 however walking around and doing thrings it increases to 60 or 70 depends what i doing which again is normal

When i saw the cardioligist to discuss results the 24 tape picked uo heartrate of 39 at times whilst sleeping he said thats normal in sleep with some-people

However,,, i am not on any beta blockers

And heart issues thank god 🌺

Look at what your heart rate is normally

is this low heart rate new to you

are you getting symptoms of any kind better to duscuss with yoyr doctor

To investigate

Keep well

micwal93 profile image
micwal93 in reply to Jamila123

Thanks for your reply. The low rate isn't new actually, its been the same for several years (at least 4 years when I started noticing my heart rate more).

I used to be very physically active, running/swimming most days but I do not exercise as much nowadays, and I am not of athletic fitness by any means whatsoever.

Yes, my heart rate increases normally with physical exertion of any kind (so far as I know).

When I get a consultation letter about the 48 hour monitor I will discuss it all with the consultant.



I take Bisoprolol and my heart rate is 56 to 60 all the time. I don't have a problem with that except for walking up hills.


Personally I find the best way of avoiding AF is to be wired up to an ECG. Hardly ever happens goes into AF then

tibetan36 profile image
tibetan36 in reply to Paddinton

Or go and sit in ED......all symptoms seem to disappear immediately! 😂

Can I just ask people how much their heart rate rises when they are not 'resting'? If I do a brisk walk it can go up to 110 but gene rally 85-90. Resting heart rate is 55-60. Walking around house it is lower 70's.

Mine was 46 in bed and 60 at rest during the day. 6 months after ablation I have resting rate of 68-72 and around 58 in bed.

micwal93 profile image
micwal93 in reply to MS444

Perhaps an ablation is something to discuss with my consultant, seems to be a very effective treatment.

Hi micwal93!

This is one group where you will find an array of heartrates ranging from 30-66 bpm and everyone will say that they are fine! And they might be fine! But if I were a Cardiologist just looking at Micwal I would want an ECG and EKG and to know ALL your meds if you always take your betablocker and how often your heartrate goes to 50 and what happens to your HR when you stand up and what happens when you have a stress test! Also do you have any conduction issues and is the physiology (and the electrophysiology) of your heart normal?

So I'm siding with Bushy and my advice to you is you must not be feeling chipper, so please call the cardiologist and make an appt. The way you feel is the most important thing. I started getting those low heart rates and within a year I ended up with a CRT-D heart implant (4 years ago) to fend of heart failure caused by electrophysiological damage which by now has advanced to nearly total heart block. Each patient is different. My doctor just happened to notice, 4 years ago, in the examining room that my pulse was 46 and my BP was 87/56 and she stepped up my treatment to get me qualified for that heart device. You shouldn't have to convince your doctor. Your numbers and tests will speak for themselves if your doctor is worth the salt of his Medical School Degree, If not move on to the next Graduate who cares about your wellbeing.

micwal93 profile image
micwal93 in reply to PattiJay

Hi there. I appreciate the advice, but as I stated, I am awaiting results from a 48-hour monitor, and I will get the results at a consultation with my cardiologist, so I will wait until that time.

I had an echocardiogram about 8 months ago and there were no structural deformities (my heart was quite strong at over 65% ejection fraction, but the exact number wasn't stated). I've had a 24-hour monitor in the past (about a year ago) which showed no problems whatsoever. It wasn't until November last year that an ambulance crew discovered AF on my ECG.

As I said, I've had a 48-hour monitor so will wait and see if there are any abnormalities. It's very frustrating because I had the monitor in June, and the NHS states that there is an 18-week guarantee between consultation and treatment, and it's been well over 18 weeks and still haven't had the results from the test I had. I don't feel like I can do anything about it either because my specialist is literally impossible to get a hold of. His secretary just says that he doesn't like talking over the phone (which I think is kind of irresponsible).

Also, when I saw the consultant last, I asked if I could have a stress test but, unbelievably, he said I shouldn't need one! I mean, how irresponsible can you get?!

Thanks for the advice.


Mine was always 58/65 when I was fit and active and didn't go much higher on exercise. About four years ago it dropped quite alarmingly to an average of 33 bpm and although I didn't feel much different I did tend to pass out (sported some amazing lumps and bruises) and my cardiologist decided it was time for a pacemaker. The difference was untrue I've felt so so much better since and would wholeheartedly recommend it if it's suggested to you. I would just keep an eye on your bpm but try not to worry unless you feel dizzy, faint or pass out then get it checked out as soon as. Take care

Hi Nicki, I'm very glad to hear you are feeling better now! My dad also recently had a pacemaker and feels better than he has done for a very long time!

I don't think the doctors feel that my situation warrants a pacemaker after my 48-hour monitor, however the cardiologist did say that he would arrange a month-long monitor and stress test for me.



see what they say after that, it will depend on how low your bpm goes and how often. I wish you all the best 😊

Looks like I am reviving an old thread that's almost 2 years old!

Well, I am 43 years old, and my HR drops to mid-40's and mid-50's quite regularly ..even during the day when I am sat for more than 30 mins..BUT, when I am running at a pace of 9:30 mins/mile for over 30 mins it easily touches 180+. And if I am running really fast in a parkrun (5 kms in 27-28 minutes) then it goes to 205 as well.

I have had a few episodes of waking up at night totally drenched in sweat as well (one a few weeks back and another a few months back).

My thyroid is on the borderline (TSH was higher than the allowed range), but NHS hasn't yet started medicine for Thyroid and just advise me to get Thyroid tested every 3 months or so.

Would be good to hear experiences of people who have had similar issue, my high HR was dismissed by GP saying that I need not worry about it. I am thinking if I should try again and bring all the above to my GP's attention once more.

(Sorry for the slightly long post!)

I do regular meditation for 20 minutes (if it can lower HR?).

Edit 2: I don't take any medication.

My resting heart rate has been 50-55 for years. I’ve only had one Afib event and it happened within a. Hour of using a topical NSAID. It jumped from 55 to 130 in an hour. My heart rate was already close to normal by the time I got to the ER. Within a couple hours I was back in normal sinus rhythm. No doctor (even the cardiologist) never mentioned my low resting heart rate as a factor relating to Afib.

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