PVC's and RonT beats

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2005
PVC's and RonT beats
Thu, 01-27-2005 - 11:06am

Hello all,

Back in early November, I had several days where I was experiencing alot of PVC's. Background info: I have had panic disorder/general anxiety disorder for 10 years. I take Xanax for it (I've tried others, but they don't work or I have problems taking) and it helps. I have noticed over the years the occasional skipped beat or two, but never thought much of it, as my EKG's have always been fine, and I am treated by a cardiologist for my panic disorder. Well, two weeks before the November episode, I had 2 cups of hot chocolate every day (I had a really bad head cold) and was eating chocolate candy every day that the managers had brought in for Halloween. I usually stay as far away from caffiene and chocolate as I can, since I know it aggravates my anxiety and can make my heartrate go up, which I tend to have a fast one at times anyway, but I have low blood pressure. So after a couple of days of having several PVC's in a hour, 2-3 times during the day, they started happening constantly, it seemed, and I went to see my doctor. I was really worried about them, so I am sure that the stress and worry had made them that much worse. He did an EKG, which was normal (I have a sinus arrythmia that I have always had and they have always told me it is nothing to worry about). He did put a 24 hour halter monitor on me, even though he told me he thought I was having PVC's (that is actually the first time I had heard that term....I had always referred to the strange beats as "skipped beats") that were benign....not dangerous or life-threatening, but he did the monitor to be sure. He had me start taking 25 mg of Toprol, since my heart rate was up a little and so it would help ease the PVC's some. I went back the next day and he read the monitor results and told me I had had a little over 3300 in the 24 hour period, but they were all the benign kind and I did not need to worry about them. I of course asked him if they were dangerous and he smilingly told me that if they were, he wouldn't be sending me home, he'd be sending me to the ER. They eased up after a couple of days of taking the Toprol XL and I felt better. Then I started having panic attacks from all the stress of worrying if I was going to have a heart attack or drop dead from the PVC's. That went on for a month, off an on, until the cardiologist and our family doctor, who is an internist, changed my Xanax to the new Xanax XR. They also had me start taking a 1/2 of the 25 mg Toprol each morning, so it wouldn't drop my blood pressure too much, to help with the anxiety and the PVC's that I was having (just a few each day, sometimes none at all during the day). I have had a few occassions since November (New Years weekend, 2 weekends ago, and this last weekend) where I had instances of having alot of PVC's in an hour or two, then it eases up then comes back a couple of hours later and this goes on for a day or a few days then goes away for a few days to a week. The most I have counted, when I'm actually paying attention even though they told me not to, was 50 in a little over an hour, which they told me not to worry about. I have been back to my doctor (the internist) twice for check ups on the new medicince. She has also read over the halter monitor results and concurs with the cardiologist that they are benign and not life-threatening and that I need to learn to ignore them and continue with my daily activities. My last visit to her was a week ago monday and I was talking about having had some that weekend. She told me that she wants me to go to an electrophysiologist, which kinda freaked me out and I was getting upset, and she told me that it's not that she thinks something is wrong with my heart, she just feels that I am not going to accept that nothing is wrong and that I will just have to learn to deal with the PVC's unless a specialist in this area checks me out and tells me the same thing. I got copies of my halter monitor results last night and the two EKG's to take to the electrophysiologist (I go next tuesday) and I was reading over the halter monitor results more thoroughly then when I first saw them. I was concerned about something I read there, that my doctor did not mention. It said I had 1100 RonT beats, which when I looked up on the internet, I get conflicting information. One site says it can lead to ventricular fibrillation and be fatal, and another site says that in a healthy, uncompromised heart (which mine supposedly is) that they are considered benign. Does anyone have any information about these RonT beats? Or about the PVC's and how to ignore and handle them? And to not worry about dying from them? I am doing better, but I want to completely get over this fear. Thanks so much for any feedback.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2003
Thu, 01-27-2005 - 2:47pm

Welcome to this fine board.