What could be causing heart weirdness?
September 20, 2012 7:50 AM Subscribe
Medical advice... What could be causing extended and ongoing heart weirdness? Long-ish details inside...
posted by Ziggurat to health & fitness (25 answers total)
My wife had a fairly sudden onset of heart symptoms about a month ago, and they've been ongoing since. At their worst, she called a nurse-line and they recommended a visit to emergency. At emergency they detected the symptoms but said: "your ECG is good." They sent her for x-rays (which came back normal) and blood-work (which came back mostly normal, except for fairly low (but not drastically) iron and low blood pressure (in the "abnormally low" range, but barely). She's scheduled for a Holter test tomorrow, but wanted to go in to her next meeting with the doctor as informed as possible. As well, the results of the test may take a couple weeks, so if she can do anything to help her heart in the meantime, she's obviously eager to do so.
Symptoms (and I'm not going to use any medical terms, in case they're not used correctly):
- Frequent skipped beats and fluttering (including beats that are sometimes weaker than normal). This isn't a once-in-awhile thing... the skipped beats happen every 5-10 seconds and go on for days.
- Occasional chest pain. This is not a sharp pain but a dull ache. It comes and goes and she describes it as a 3/10 level of pain.
- Tingling and pain in hands (worse in the evening). It comes and goes.
- Numbness and a "pulling" sensation down the inside middle of her left arm (occasionally, comes and goes, worse in the evenings)
- Exhaustion (comes and goes, worse in the evening)
- She did a fairly vigorous 20 minute workout yesterday. She felt good during, but about 30 minutes later she had noticeable chest pain for 15 minutes or so.
- Moving around seems to help -- it's worse when she's at rest.
- Bananas -- she thought it might be a potassium issue; bananas seem to help somewhat, temporarily.
Since the visit to the emergency, she's been taking:
- Iron supplements (daily) [this was on earlier advice of the family doctor] -- taken with vitamin C to help with absorption
- Magnesium (daily) [on advice of the internet, as something that has helped people facing similar symptoms]
- B12 (daily)
Additional info that may be relevant:
- 38 years old
- Taking no other medication
- Good cardio fitness and health
- Resting heart rate is, normally, around 70ish
- Thyroid was tested and no results have come back (the doctor said they would only call if results were abnormal)
- No history of heart problems in her family
- Any idea as to causes? Is this likely a condition, or a symptom?
- Any advice for how to fix it?
- Idea of how dangerous this is... They sent her home from emergency, so it doesn’t seem critical, but should she be being extra cautious?
- Should she be getting more/less exercise right now? Any other advice on things to do/avoid?
thanks so much for your help.