Heart Rhythm Conditions – Welcome to the group

Welcome to the Heart Rhythm Conditions group on Mayo Clinic Connect.
Did you know that the average heart beats 100,000 times a day? Millions of people live with heart rhythm problems (heart arrhythmias) which occur when the electrical impulses that coordinate heartbeats don’t work properly. Let’s connect with each other; we can share stories and learn about coping with the challenges, and living well with abnormal heart rhythms. I invite you to follow the group. Simply click the +FOLLOW icon on the group landing page.

I’m Kanaaz (@kanaazpereira), and I’m the moderator of this group. When you post to this group, chances are you’ll also be greeted by volunteer patient Mentors and fellow members. Learn more about Moderators and Mentors on Connect.

Let’s chat. Why not start by introducing yourself?

@cece55

Hi….I am not new to Mayo Connect as I have been posting on Sleep Apnea for the past several weeks but I do have a question concerning AFib which the doctors have told me goes hand in hand with my Sleep Apnea.

I was diagnosed with AFib two months ago after my first episode lasting 7 hours. I converted on my own and was put on Metoporal and a low dose aspirin as I am only 1 on Chad. This past week I had my second episode lasting 18 hours. The cardiologist doubled my Metoporal dosage and put me on Eliquis. I self converted on my own again. The problem I am having is that I am living in fear of the next time. I know an ablation will be in my future because I am very drug sensitive and do not believe I can handle the heart rhythm drugs. I don't like the feeling of living in fear or wondering when the next episode will be. It's making me very anxious. My cardiologist said to "live my life" and relax. The Eliquis will protect me from stroke and an ablation is not something to be afraid of . Are there any words of advice as to how I can stop dwelling on "next time" and just relax?

CeCe55

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I appreciate your fear. This can be addressed with talk therapy, tapping, massage therapy, and whatever else you have in your health basket. Prayer helps lot's.

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@healthytoday

After 2.3 years on dofitilide, I was taken off of it since it is no longer working re afib. Cardiologist and I discussed the problem, and he put me on a small dose of metoporol. Just started it this morning. Feel alittle odd, but okay. Been working on taxes and my cognitive function is good, not sleepy, seems to be processing well. Thank God. He said the drugs to control afib are no longer working for me, and now the strategy is rate control. HR was about 100 resting, alittle too high. He's a young local doctor and doesn't mind that I take a handful of vitamins twice a day. My other functions are healthy. PRAY FOR SUCCESS!!

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healtytoday, My cardiologist is young as well. When I approached him about supplements his response was , In your case, it is a good idea. He also asked me why I'd want to donate blood and my response was, It is the only natural blood thinner, helps my body make new blood and someone out there could use some help. His response was, I have no problem with you giving blood.

These younger cardiologists are into nutrition, supplements and exercise. BTW, when I first went to him he reminded me of Dougie Houser form th eTV and the others on staff called him Dr. Jimmy. I cracked dup. HJe's now needing to get th next size white coat cuz he's built himself a bit of muscles over th almost 4 years I've been seeing him.

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@eileena

healtytoday, My cardiologist is young as well. When I approached him about supplements his response was , In your case, it is a good idea. He also asked me why I'd want to donate blood and my response was, It is the only natural blood thinner, helps my body make new blood and someone out there could use some help. His response was, I have no problem with you giving blood.

These younger cardiologists are into nutrition, supplements and exercise. BTW, when I first went to him he reminded me of Dougie Houser form th eTV and the others on staff called him Dr. Jimmy. I cracked dup. HJe's now needing to get th next size white coat cuz he's built himself a bit of muscles over th almost 4 years I've been seeing him.

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What supplements do you take?

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@dothag

Hi, my name is Dot and I have afib. I had a cardio version which helped for about six months. Recently I changed cardiologist and my new doctor has me doing a life style change. He wants me to lose 10 lbs. lost 6 pounds so far. My prior doctor was talking ablation, watchman or another cardio version. He put me on heart rhythm drugs which made me feel very weak, like my body was jelly. Hoping this life style change helps. Hate the fatigue and weak feelings.

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Hi Dot @dothag,

Making lifestyle changes can be hard, I know but following your doctor’s recommendations about diet, sleep, exercise can actually slow heart disease’s progression and improve your everyday life. In fact, there are many studies that show that people with mild to moderate heart failure often lead nearly normal lives as a result of making healthier lifestyle choices. And, if you could see me, I’m applauding the fact that you lost weight! That’s great to hear! Are there any suggestions or tips you’d like to share?

I’m tagging @rod1105 @gr82balive @marlynkay @kitzkatz @ybrik @1943, who’ve written about cardio version; I hope they will join in and share their thoughts and insights.

@dothag, could you share a bit more about the heart rhythm drugs you’ve been prescribed?

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@afrobin

Hello Cece! Sorry to hear about your episodes of AFib. Some years ago I suffered from constant AFib. The cardiologist had never seen a case as bad as mine apparently. I didn't have 3 steady beats in a row. I couldn't get enough air and I felt dizzy. I was put on a beta blocker. Unfortunately, the highest dose was required which the cardiologist said could stop my heart! He told me to try to get it down even just to 3 1/2 pills a day instead of 4. My heart would go haywire with any reduction in the dose. I had to remain at the high dose and the side effects made me feel 90 years old…at age 46! This went on for almost 2 years. I felt like an invalid and let my husband do any physical work. It was depressing!

I did some research and I learned a lot about arrhythmias. I learned to take responsibility for my condition and have some power over it myself instead of relying on medication alone. I never drank coffee, tea, alcohol or ate chocolate and I kept carbs to a minimum; all things that got my heart racing and going arrhythmic. I tried to keep stress to a minimum. Dental anaesthetics were a non stimulating kind. No cold meds for me. I was highly motivated to get off the beta blockers and followed the regimen religiously.

Doing my research I learned that exercise helps so I decided to join a gym and I went on the treadmill for 35 minutes 6 mornings a week for 4 months then tapered off a bit. Of course, on beta blockers my heart rate stayed at 80 bpm. After a week I reduced the beta blocker dose a bit. (One has to do it very gradually.) My heart rate stayed stable! At the end of a month, I was completely OFF the beta blockers.
I went to see the cardiologist and he said that my case was so extreme that the AFib would come back. Well, it is 24 years later and I have had blips when I had some coffee or chocolate which reminds me to stay away from those stimulants…and last year I had 1 day of unstable heart beats when I was under a lot of stress. Otherwise, my heart is stable.

I feel in control of my condition. And I hope that you can also gain similar control by taking charge of your Afib. Good luck!

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@afrobin– Wonderful story! Love to hear when people take responsibility for their health & well being! It takes sacrifice and a clear determination and this is clear in what your story depicts! So happy for you and hope that others in our Connect family are encouraged by your story! I know I am! Jim @thankful

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@scardycat

What supplements do you take?

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At breakfast, I take for my mood omega3 and Bvitamins. For general well being and heart, I take Vit c and magnesium and potassium. Lunch, another vit c, d or e, coenzyme10 (for heart),

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@healthytoday

At breakfast, I take for my mood omega3 and Bvitamins. For general well being and heart, I take Vit c and magnesium and potassium. Lunch, another vit c, d or e, coenzyme10 (for heart),

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Thanks! I can’t take the Coq10 energizes my heart too much, 😊

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@healthytoday

At breakfast, I take for my mood omega3 and Bvitamins. For general well being and heart, I take Vit c and magnesium and potassium. Lunch, another vit c, d or e, coenzyme10 (for heart),

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Almost exactly my daily supplement load, @scardycat. That's in addition to my medication — two at breakfast and dinner plus one other at dinner and two more at bedtime.

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@scardycat

What supplements do you take?

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Scardycat, I take 4 directly for my heart. CoQ10, Carnitine, D-Ribose and Hawthorne extract. There is one Carnitine that is supposed to be specifically fo your heart, but rich tnow I have Carnital. D-Ribose is a 5 sided sugar specifically for muscles, the heart is a muscle so it is for your heart. Hawthorn is known worldwide for heart failure. Can't explain the other 2, but you can look them up.

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@predictable

Almost exactly my daily supplement load, @scardycat. That's in addition to my medication — two at breakfast and dinner plus one other at dinner and two more at bedtime.

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Hello @predictable and all of you in this discussion,

I recently found that my magnesium level is at the very low point of the normal range. A specialist I saw this week mentioned that probably when I am physically active it goes down even further because I obviously don't have any "reserve." So how much magnesium do you take and what type of magnesium do you take? Thanks for your help. You are all just great!

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@hopeful33250

Hello @predictable and all of you in this discussion,

I recently found that my magnesium level is at the very low point of the normal range. A specialist I saw this week mentioned that probably when I am physically active it goes down even further because I obviously don't have any "reserve." So how much magnesium do you take and what type of magnesium do you take? Thanks for your help. You are all just great!

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I take 400 mg dr Sinatra, hoping that’s a safe level, which I think it is.

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@hopeful33250

Hello @predictable and all of you in this discussion,

I recently found that my magnesium level is at the very low point of the normal range. A specialist I saw this week mentioned that probably when I am physically active it goes down even further because I obviously don't have any "reserve." So how much magnesium do you take and what type of magnesium do you take? Thanks for your help. You are all just great!

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Hi, Teresa @hopeful33250. I don't take a magnesium supplement product, but rely on a half dozen foods for my daily intake: First, is almond butter for lunch, then oats for breakfast along with yogurt, and dark chocolate for snacks. Other good sources for me are sesame seeds, quinoa, and avacado. I avoid leafy greens for their vitamin K component which conflicts with my Coumadin anticoagulant. Martin

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Hi @hopeful33250,

This recent paper, published in “Open Heart” journal, reviews the effect of magnesium deficiency on the cardiovascular system. https://openheart.bmj.com/content/5/2/e000775

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@hopeful33250

Hello @predictable and all of you in this discussion,

I recently found that my magnesium level is at the very low point of the normal range. A specialist I saw this week mentioned that probably when I am physically active it goes down even further because I obviously don't have any "reserve." So how much magnesium do you take and what type of magnesium do you take? Thanks for your help. You are all just great!

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Some magnesium absorbs better than others. Looking online, we discovered that Magnesium Glycinate 400mg absorbs the best. Might go up in dosage and take two. Also, Hawthorne root capsules from health food stores/Whole Foods is suppose to be good for the heart. I took it for about a week, but went on Metoprolol and will introduce it to my system as I get use to the Metoprolol to slow the heart beat. My beat is better. I am grateful there are so many ways we can approach these problems of the heart, and many complement each other. Day 2 of Metoprolol. I had some tightness in the neck and chest yesterday which cleared up in 15 minutes. Getting use to it. As far as dosage of vitamins, I think you just have to wing it. Do some research, consider your age, size, sensativity etc. I've been taking vitamins since my mid 20's when I read Adelle Davis' books. I consider them food. Also, my husband and I prepare 95% of our food from scratch, fresh soups, fresh steamed vegs, fresh berries with oatmeal etc. I think having simple, low sodium and low sugar food really matters.

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@scardycat

Thanks! I can’t take the Coq10 energizes my heart too much, 😊

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That's interesting. It raises the heart rate? I use to eat a lot of cayenne pepper in my soups. I heard it was a heart stimulant so cut back. Haven't noticed a difference. Also, black pepper is a heart stimulant and I avoid it. Working on slowing heart rate. Cut my dark chocolate…: (

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