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wierd and frightening symptoms
azheart2 posted:
Hello, I am wondering if I have heart issues, last year for a few days I experienced heart fluttering, or i guess rapid heart rate, it felt like it would come through my chest....that seemed to happen when doing nothing stressfull, at night it would happen in bed, and seemed to go away when i lay on my right side. This symptom stopped, but over the past year I noticed when walking up hill, or carrying heavy objects I have to gasp for breath, my chest feels so tight when that happens. And my heart beats extremely fast during those times. My doctor seemed to blow it off, as well as telling me my blood pressure was high but didn't warrant meds.......I am 50 years old and female, I do smoke, and only about 15 lbs overweight. I also described to him that for at least 30 years I experienced light headedness occasionally, fainting (which seemed to correct when I ate something) and shakiness also corrected by eating or drinking oj. His response "well that sounds like diabetes, you don't want that" never did a blood test for sugar issues. One more symptom I have is frequent headaches......I am looking forward to any input on this, I am changing doctors to one who will take me more seriously and would like some advice on what questions I can ask that will get me the help or testing i need.......thanks in advance!
billh99 responded:
I am looking forward to any input on this, I am changing doctors to one who will take me more seriously and would like some advice on what questions I can ask that will get me the help or testing i need.

Yes. That is the best thing that you can do.

The most important thing that the doctor should do is full physical. That will include basic blood test and the physical exam. He might run an EKG in his office.

It really depends on results of his exam.

But there is a fair chance that he will refer you to a cardiologist. And the first 2 tests might be a Holter monitor. That is a wearable EKG that you use for 24hr to check for irregular heart rates and a stress test.
azheart2 replied to billh99's response:
Thank you for your response, he did do a ton of blood tests, said cholesterol was borderline and no need for meds for that either...another strange symptom i get is sometimes i'll wake up suddenly after only sleeping a few minutes with a panicked or anxious feeling, very odd.
billh99 replied to azheart2's response:
Get a copy of those lab reports. That is your right.

And take them with you to the new doctor.

Lets us know what direction the new doctor takes.
cardiostarusa1 responded:

"I am changing doctors"


..."telling me my blood pressure was high"

How high?

Normal resting BP in adults is under 120/80 with 115/75 or 110/70 considered as being optimal/ideal. Prehypertension is defined as systolic of 120-139 mmHg and diastolic of 80-89 mmHg. Stage 1 is systolic of 140-159 and diastolic of 90-99. Stage II is systolic of 160-179 and diastolic of 100-109. Stage III is systolic greater than 180 and diastolic greater than 110. Stage IV systolic of 210 and greater, and diastolic of 120 and greater.

"I do smoke,"

Quit ASAP!

As reported, smoking increases the circulating levels of catecholamines and free fatty acids, which may contribute to the increased level of total cholesterol and decreased levels of high-density lipoprotein ("good" cholesterol) that are found in habitual cigarette smokers.

The effects on platelets may enhance coagulation (blood clotting). There can be accelerated coronary and peripheral vascular disease, and occurrence of a dreaded stroke and complications from hypertension.

The greatest concern is the acceleration or aggravation of cardiovascular disease. Smoking can promote atherosclerotic vascular disease by contributing to high cholesterol, endothelial injury (damaging the sensitive inner lining of the walls of the arteries), or both.

Complications of hypertension are more severe in those who smoke cigarettes. Smoking can also aggravate hypertension by causing vasoconstriction (tightening of the vessels).

After You Quit Smoking - The First 2 Days

Quit Smoking Benefits - the Healing Begins...When you quit smoking, the benefits begin within minutes of your last...

At 20 minutes after quitting:

Blood pressure decreases, pulse rate drops...
..."experienced heart fluttering"

As applicable, the most common type of palpitations (heart flutters/skips), premature ventricular contractions (PVCs, occurs even in many healthy individuals), has various causes/triggers, cardiac and non-cardiac.

Often, PVCs are typically harmless, be it isolated (single), couplets (2-in-row), triplets (3-in-a-row) or salvos (short bursts of 3 or more in-a-row), bigeminy (occurring every other beat), trigeminy (occurring every third beat), quadrigeminy (occurring every fourth beat), etc.

HOWEVER, the main problem/concern (even more so, much more emphasized for those with certain major or serious heart conditions) with PVCs is if/when sustained ventricular tachycardia (runs of PVCs over 30 seconds) occurs.

Symptoms that may/can occur wih PVCs includes none or chest pain/discomfort/pressure/tightness, difficulty breathing, lightheadedness/dizziness, and in uncommon to rare cases, near-syncope or syncope (temporary loss of consciousness, includes fainting and passing out).

Best of luck down the road of life.

Take care,


WebMD member (since 8/99)



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