Increase in PVC s ? After 2nd holter t... - Arrhythmia Alliance

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Increase in PVC s ? After 2nd holter test.


Visited my cardiologist today to get the result of my second holter test and I am worried cos the frequency of the ectopic beats has increased substantially since my first test. The cardiologist insisted that there was nothing to worry about as they are completely benign. He also said not to read much into the increase and didnt seem to bothered as according to him it dosent mean that would be my reading every 24 hrs. Still waiting for a cardiac CT scan to rule out coronary heart disease. l have already had an echocardiogram (normal heart structure ) a stress test which was inconclusive, two 24 hr holter tests and various ECGs. My first holter test detected 1835 (2.7%) whilst this one has detected 12273 (15.0%)



4 Replies

Yes, that is a significant increase. I’m experiencing similar. A few years ago I was having a few hundred a day and now my estimation is 10,000+. I’m due another 24h Holter in a few weeks and the wait has been hell, with these constant ectopics. I don’t know what to make of this ‘benign’ explanation either. I think the magic number is 20% before the problem is deemed suitable for treatment but that’s 1 in 5 beats! Good luck with the CT scan.

KopEnd in reply to Autumn_Leaves

Thanks for your reply I agree it is a significant increase but my cardiologist didnt seem to concerned at all. He told me not to read much into it as numbers tend to differ from day to day but still it is worrying when you are feeling that horrible knot like sensation in your chest for long periods. He told me as long as my heart structure was ok which according to my echo cardiogram it is there was not much to be worried about and that the cardio CT scan was also to rule out any possibility of coronary heart disease of some sort. Currently I am seeing both a cardiologist and an electrophysiologist. I have been researching lately on the possibility of my PVCs been caused by an irritated vagus nerve and its beginning to look like this could be the cause of my ectopics although not at all sure yet. My PVCs are nearly always accompanied by blurps, rumblings in the stomach, bloatness and a dry cough. Symptoms associated with the Vagus nerve so we will wait and see what the scan reveals. Initially they wanted me to have an MRI test but since I suffer from anxiety and claustrophobia I opted out of having the MRI. Wishing you luck too.

Autumn_Leaves in reply to KopEnd

Thank you very much. I think there is some significance in the vagus nerve hypotheses because my ectopics are triggered by eating and usually subside within an hour or so to a more “occasional” rate — though not entirely gone. But that hour or so after eating can feel awful with ectopics firing off every 3 beats or 5 beats etc.

I had a cardiac MRI a few years ago when the ectopics were not as bad and I was told it was normal. My recent ECG picked up one PVC but was “otherwise normal”. I had a look at my discharge letter from the arrhythmia nurse from a couple of years ago and her advice was to “just ignore them”. But you can’t when they’re firing off constantly. As for avoiding common triggers, I’ve done all that to no avail. I can’t decide not to eat. I’m actually underweight and the advice to add in a couple of snacks between meals just sets off the ectopics. Magnesium supplements aren’t doing anything for me either even if some people swear by them. I’ve even tried those rehydration sachets in case it was an electrolyte imbalance, but that wasn’t the answer.

You have my sympathies. I was under the impression that 10-20% would mean trying medication like a beta blocker, but they can make some people feel awful. An ablation procedure is usually considered at 20%+ but the thought of that terrifies me, but it can help some people — though not everyone says it works, or the ectopics come back etc. So what is the answer? You’re guess is as good as mine!

KopEnd in reply to Autumn_Leaves

I fully understand how you are feeling cos only those of us who are actually living through this in our skins know the nightmare of living every day with multiple ectopic beats. I notice that taking a Rennie after eating does bring some relieve even if its just for a while. The more I belch there more better I feel thats why I really think it must have something to do with the so called vagus nerve. Anyways I am going for my CT scan next week and according to my electrophysiologist this will determine what is actually causing the PVCs. I have also been taking magnesium 100mg daily but just like you I havent felt any significant improvement. I cannot take the 200mg recommended as they give me intestinal issues. (loose stools). I sympathize with your concerns with reference to having an ablation but if its the only option what do we do ? If my scan shows I have no coronary heart issues my cardiologist will most probably put me on an anti- arrhythmic drug which I am already weary of. I am on beta blockers now Atenolol 75mg daily.

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