By the time I got there, my symptoms had gone. They still did an EKG and a pulmonary test anyway, but the only thing he had to tell me was that he thought I was stressed out or had anxiety. While I didn't want to believe it (and really didn't), I took his word for it at the time.
However... it started getting more and more frequent as the days passed. It went from once every few days to now happening every single day, many many times a day. I decided to take my pulse when this happens and it ranges btwn 118-130. It only lasts as long as it takes me to take a few breaths, slow down, or sit down. It literally passes in a minute, but if I continue to exert myself, it picks back up a few minutes later. I looked up the symptoms online and looked for threads here, and found that what I have is more likely to be Tachycardia.
ETA: I have Gestational Diabetes and my blood sugar is always normal when this happens. My blood pressure is normal as well at these times (I have my own wrist cuff). I'm also not anemic.
I have an OB appointment this coming Wednesday where I plan on bringing it up, however I've been feeling so crappy that I might try to get an earlier appointment with him and/or see my regular doctor before then.
What I'd like to know is, did you have Tachycardia while pregnant, or, if you know anything about it, I'd like to hear your input. I don't know much, don't know if it's something that is treatable, whether it goes away after you deliver, etc. At this point, I'm seriously considering disability until this child arrives because of it - and I'm really concerned as to how it makes me feel.
Thanks for any and all info you might be able to provide me with, it's much appreciated!!!
Anyway, with DD1, I went through a whole cardiology eval. What they found is that my heart is physically normal and seems very strong and healthy. It beats fast, and even faster when I'm pregnant, and there's no physiological explanation. It was diagnosed an inappropriate sinus tachycardia (inappropriate meaning nobody knows the reason for it-- it's inappropriate because the heart is healthy.) The decision was made that if my average rate over 24 hours got high enough, we'd consider beta-blockers. The cardiologist was awesome, and told me she was comfortable enough with the meds in pregnancy that she even recommended them for her own daughter when her daughter had this same issue going on. In any case, with both my pregnancies we monitored in every trimester, and the rate never got high enough.
FWIW, though, my rate is a lot higher than yours. I average 100 while sound asleep in the dead of night, and my resting daytime rate is often as high as 135. On a treadmill, I can get up SO MUCH HIGHER. And that's NON-PREGNANT
The problem diminished slowly in the few weeks right after my births. By six weeks postpartum, it was back to my normal rate.
I never had dizziness or lightheadedness, though. That sounds concerning. Have you seen a cardiologist for ultrasound evaluation?
Have you had a thyroid evaluation?
My spells started out and were first thought to be panic attack related. Light-headed, dizzy, sweaty palms, chest pain, flushed feeling, all with a heart rate that soared over 200bpm. Nothing brought it down until it was ready pretty much. Occasionaly when it was really really cold outside breathing in that air would help. I have had numerous tests done, worn monitors for a month before and my heart is "normal".
I have been told that even people who do not have tachy can develope it during pregnancy and it sometimes goes away after delivery. One reason is the increase in blood volume putting extra work on the heart.
I do not know if this helps, but feel free to ask any questions you may have and I will try to answer from my experience.
HeatherB ~ mama to 3 wonderful boys: 03/02; 09/04; 09/07 - and Eliana, 11/13/10!
Founder of Houston Birth Alternatives: Be Informed, Encouraged, Supported birth support group and aspiring midwife.
One thing that has not been mentioned are "Vagal maneuvers." This is from mayoclinic.com:
Vagal maneuvers. Your doctor may ask you to perform an action, called a vagal maneuver, during an episode of a fast heartbeat. Vagal maneuvers affect the vagus nerve, which helps regulate your heartbeat. The maneuvers include coughing, bearing down as if you're having a bowel movement, and putting an icepack on your face. I have found that these can help - if you catch yourself when your heart rate is just starting to skyrocket.
Good luck with your upcoming doctors' appointments. If it's decided that you need to go on medication to help control this, then the most important thing is that you first consult with your doctor to choose a medication you feel comfortable with and then that you take it exactly as prescribed and keep a log of any side effects/symptoms. It can take time to find the right drug/dosage, so don't get discouraged.
I'm sending you, your baby, and the rest of your family my best wishes. Good luck, again.
I actually DID have severe morning sickness (was on zofran which barely took the edge off), but that passed at around 5 months and I've been fine ever since.
I made an appointment for this Monday with my GP as a follow up to the visit I originally had with his nurse practitioner (who had loosely diagnosed me with stress/anxiety). Their office is able to give you a holter monitor so if I need one, I won't have to go to a cardiologist initially.
I'm usually never one to self-diagnose, but since I was so concerned and didn't agree with the anxiety diagnosis I was originally given, I set out looking for answers. I think the best site I've found yet on the subject - and what has really sold me on the idea that this is what I'm experiencing - is this one. The only thing I don't experience is periods of prolonged elevated pulse. It lasts at the most 2-3 minutes, tops, but is usually about 1-2 minutes. But all other symptoms are frighteningly spot on.
I'm not looking for something to be wrong with me. I'm just looking for explanations as to why I can barely exert any energy most days without feeling like I have something like Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and breathing heavy like I've just climbed 2 flights of stairs...lol.
Then was pregnancy #7. I had a run of pretty nasty tachycardia, accompanied by chest pain and severe shortness of breath within hours of having my PICC pulled. That won me a week in the hospital with every test imaginable-blood gases,VQ scan, 2d echo, pulmonary function etc...., on oxygen for a few days and another diagnosis of idiopathic tachycardia. The only thing they found was a bladder infection and my potassium was low. I was a bit of a mess. If I was in bed I was fine, as soon as I stood up my hr would head up to 130, if I walked to the bathroom it was 160. By the time I left the hospital I was only up to the 120's when I got up and normal a few days after that. With this pregnancy the postprandial tachycardia can be awful-it usually lasts hours but I haven't had any SOB so that is a blessing.
If you can keep episodes to a few minutes, you aren't having sustained tachycardia over 140 (which was one cardiologists comfort level), it is annoying and can be miserable but I wouldn't worry too much especially if they have done all the normal tests and they have come back fine.
I had this first come up during my first pregnancy, 5 years ago, with episodes of heart racing/feeling faint. I think I run a little fast all the time (100-120 resting, 150-170 walking briskly) but pregnancy definitely exacerbates it. They did end up saying that I had SVT, like another poster brought up. Apparently pregnancy is a normal time for it to come to a head because your heartrate goes up/blood volume goes up anyway. I did wear a holter monitor and had a cardio ultrasound, and they said everything looks normal except that I had episodes of heart rate reaching 170. This did not concern my OB, apparently, and I had a normal vaginal delivery.
I have not yet gone on any medication (pregnant or otherwise), because I'm very reluctant to and it's not that much of a problem to me. I wear a Heart Rate Monitor when I work out, and my midwife told me to keep my rate 160 and under, so I do. Apparently there's also a minor surgery they can do to correct this, but it has a small risk that you'll need a pacemaker implanted (!) so I've been reluctant to do this as well.
Drinking lots of water (my midwife said a gallon a day) helps, as does avoiding caffeine and sudden changes (lurching up out of bed/couch, etc.). If I have an episode I just sit/lay down (laying down is much better, if possible) and wait for it to pass.
Hope this helps.
C.- WOHM, CPST Instructor, and all around busy Mama to A.- 02/04, I. 01/07,E. 09/10 and
expecting the surprise of our lives Fall 2012!