scary experience

Hi I am very new to this - had an episode of palpitations about 14 months ago which prompted my husband to take me to A&E but by the time I was seen it had stopped and the ecg showed nothing of concern, it was put down as a 1 off and I had nothing else till this Tuesday when I had an attack at work and had to call an ambulance as it would not stop - the paramedic did an ecg when he arrived and my heart rate was recorded at 200bpm. In the hospital the diagnosis I was given was SVT. This latest attack/episode lasted over an hour and was very very frightening. It was longer and worse than the previous episode - is this likely or is it just one of those things? Am I likely to have more frequent, longer attacks or is it just a random thing. It has scared me that it will happen again. Thanks.

6 Replies

  • Hi Doris 23, I suffer from this but very infrequently and not so severe as yours. There is medication you can take and there is a procedure called an ablation you can have to hopefully stop it. You need to discuss with your GP and ask to be referred to an Electrophysiologist. There are also things you can try yourself to stop an episode. Look it up on this website.

    Take care.

  • Hi I have previously felt palpitations before (at least 3 occasions) my diagnosis but always ignored them. I had a head injury that needed an ambulance to be called and when the paramedics arrived the realised I was running at 230 and in SVT. I didn't notice a thing! Not sure if it was the bang to the head that meant I couldn't feel. I was referred to my Electophysiologist and he explained that if if wasn't affecting my life then the best thing is to leave it alone, so I did. A few months later it started happening again so I had a few admissions to hospital this time my EP suggested we ablate as when it starts to become more frequent it can start happening more. The ablation was aborted as they realised it was more complex then normal SVT and put me on medication. A year of episodes went by and they became more and more frequent once a month then every other week. This doesn't always happen but this is When something needs to be done had my 2ns ablation in November all seems to be well!

  • Hi, I had a quadruple bypass last October and whilst recovering and still in hospital I had a severe episode of SVT, ended up with 3 lots of medications that did not work and then 3 electric shocks to get me back into a normal rhythm. One year on and I am still having them and bad palpitations that can almost make me black out. Up shoot is my SVT is caused by scarring from the bypass operation so I'm told. I have almost daily episodes of SVT but I try to remain calm and ride them out. I am waiting to go see a specialist for an ablation, until then I keep taking the meds and try to carry on with life. Only been to A & E once and that was my GP who saw I was in SVT whilst seeing him and he called an ambulance. These SVT episodes can make me feel absolutely lousy but I bought an electronic BP monitor mainly so I can monitor my heart rate. Mine is usually 115 beats per minute at rest and can go up to 160 during an episode, ( my 1st episode in hospital the heart rate was 225bpm) In my head I say to myself if my rate gets to 180 its ambulance time, though the cardiologist says 140bpm maximum and no longer than 15 minutes any longer and I must call for help. Said all this to really say, everyone has a different story but there is help and light at the end of the tunnel, had all sorts of tests and monitoring so I feel all has been done that needed to be done before the ablation. I am actually looking forward to this ablation so I can get this SVT behind me and get on with normal living.

  • Hi Doris, your story is similar to mine. I had a prolonged episode of SVT for the first time last Nov. It was captured on an ECG by ambulance crew, went to A&E but I had gone back to normal rhythm as we arrived at hospital. I have been referred to an 'Arrythmia' clinic to see a nurse specialist. I also saw my GP and he prescribed me a beta blocker (Propanalol) to take in case I have another prolonged attack. I would advise to cut out any form of caffeine, alcohol, nicotine and try not to get stressed as they can be triggers for SVT ( in my case likely too much caffeine and work stress). I've not had another episode since November but have felt it almost coming on a few times but have managed to stop it. It is very scary but I have had a lot of help from this group and feel a bit more reassured, I hope you will too.

  • Thanks everyone for your replies. It is reassuring to know that this can be easily and effectively managed and that there is such a lot of support out there. I am now waiting for my referral to cardiology so we'll see where I go from here. Feeling less anxious now though.

  • I hate to say this but if you can afford it go and see the cardiologist privately for the first time. That way the ball gets rolling much quicker.

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