Heart Problems - perhaps

Hi all.

I know this isn't likely to be the best place to post this, but as I know I'm amongst friends I hope you can indulge me in a slightly off-topic question!

Aside from asthma, I have other lung problems (SAFS/ABPA & some long-term bronchiectasis-type damage). As such, my GP tends to keep sending me for other tests just to make sure the rest of me is working OK. Following some worries about ankle swelling, she sent me for an echocardiogram & I've now been told that I need to see her, but my appointment isn't for a week yet, so I'm naturally stressed.

I know that I have a generally slow heart rate (daytime resting usually around 45-50 bpm according to my Fitbit & home blood pressure checks) but until now never gave it much thought. But given that a problem with bradycardia (the technical name) is reduced oxygen supply, I'm wondering if I have a double whammy going on here.

At this stage, I don't know why I've been called in, but I think I need to raise this anyway now that I realise it shouldn't really be that low. Does anyone else know if there's a relationship between the two problems, or have any knowledge on what I should talk to the doc about?

11 Replies

  • I wish I could help you, but I have no knowledge of this. I have always thought of you as my far away friend and I hate to hear you are having such a tough time of it good luck in your medical .

  • Thank you :)

    To be honest I don't have any obvious symptoms & don't feel unwell with it...when I rang for the test results I expected to hear 'all clear', so now I'm just panicking that they said I have to see the doc to go through the results.

  • Gosh with that I would be climbing up the wall. Hope you can soon see the doc and get some reassurance

    It is me who should always be thanking you, I guess you never realised just how much you helped me thank you.

  • Aww - thank you! No, I didn't realise but I'm glad I did :)

  • Bradycardia could be a side effect of mediations you are on. It could also be a symptom of other issues- that is why they may be checking liver, kidney function, check against clots and they are also checking your heart function with the ECG.

    I recommend you also do a 48hour Holter Monitor especially to see whether your heart rate drops any lower than 45 when you are asleep. Your cardiologist will get a good picture from that.

    If you have access to a sleep lab, please also do a sleep test to rule out Obstructive Sleep Apnea. If you have a partner, the first sign is snoring and forced breathing while you are asleep.

  • Thanks. That's helpful advice. As of yet I've not had any referral to a cardiologist, but I'll mention all those things if I do.

    Thanks :-)

  • Hi there, I really feel for you, I went through something similar earlier this year, as I had one ankle swelling for no obvious reason. Had to go through a Miriad of heart tests etc. However, in the end no problem was found, but all very worrying. I do hope you are okay, As you always give such good advice. Let us know how you do, and as you weren't called In for an immediate appointment it won't be too bad.

    Many years ago after a blood test, I called by the surgery and told I had to come and see the doctor immediately. I thought I had leukemia or some awful thing. So all very scary, actually it turned out to be glandular fever. So not so bad.

    Chin up

    R x

  • Thanks & that's reassuring. My GP is generally brilliant with me, but I just wish she'd have told the receptionist to give me a clue! I am a bit intrigued by my low heart rate - I know it's always been low & only a few weeks ago someone was taking the mick saying was I an Olympic athlete on the quiet (if only!). Anyway, yes I'll let you know once I know :)


  • Hi. Like you I seem to have heart problems, although mine is the other extreme - fast heart rate, palpitations, chest pain, sweating, numbness in left arm and swollen feet (there's more but I won't go on). I have been seeing a respiratory consultant since January because my asthma has not really been under control for over a year now. He has changed my medication a couple of times and when I saw him in June, he said that I have aspergillus positive serology and put me on a strong antihistamine and a reasonably high dose of steriods for 8 weeks. After a couple of week my asthma was no better (which it definitely should have been on the steriods) and so the consultant now wonders if there is another underlying problem (ie my heart) and I have been referred to a cardiac clinic. I have done some research and from what a I have read it seems that people with asthma may be at greater risk of heart problems, but unfortunately everything that I have read is rather vague. Personally, I do wonder whether the inflammation that underlies asthma could affect the heart, but as I have no medical knowledge of understanding this is just a thought. Like you I have been taking my pulse at various times during the day (and night) and when resting and moving about more - at least this way I have a bit of an understanding of what my heart is doing. All I can suggest is that you ask your GP what he or she knows about the potential link between asthma and heart problems and see what is said. It might also be worth contacting Asthma UK and talking to one of their specialists asthma nurses in case they have any knowledge of this matter. All the best and hope things improve quickly.

  • Hi & thanks for the reply; it does sound as though we have parallel issues going on.

    With regard to the aspergillus, have you discussed the possibility of using something like itraconazole with your specialist? It's a powerful anti-fungla& has helped my breathing no end.

    With regards to the heart, I posted a brief update on a new thread regarding the report. What I have is several leaking valves (blood going the wrong way through them), plus swelling in both of the atria & the aorta. Now the GP did say that at least some of those are likely to be connected to my lung problems, which I've had since childhood.

    I'm going for an ECG on Friday & then getting a 24-hour Holter monitor, so hopefully will get a clearer picture as time goes on.

  • Thanks for reply. I have been taking Fexofenadine for past 8 weeks. Not really sure if this has improved by breathing. See respiratory consultant again next week and am waiting for appointment for CT angiogram and to have 3 day ECG so hopefully will find out more Iin due course. Hope you get a clearer picture of what is happening very soon.

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