Premature atrial contractions: Anyone have any helpful info on this?

Posted by lolly906 @lolly906, Aug 17, 2018

I was now just recently told I have Premature Atrial Contractions, or P.A.C, after being on a holter monitor for 48 hrs. I was told this after my higher then normal calcium score, and was told p.a.c. is benign., but im still worried. I was put on monitor after I felt my heart pounding hard in my left neck area. Im wondering if anyone has any helpful info on this? Im really worried acutally, even cancelled my colonoscopy due to the laxative saying it could cause irregular heartbeat. it seems I can feel my heart skip beats at times or speed up! very scary to me. Im wondering if anyone else has this? I am 58 yrs old and am on lovastatin for high cholesterol thanks

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Heart & Blood Health group.

My cardiologist has diagnosed me with atrial fibrillation (fast and irregular heart beat) and I am taking a blood thinner (xarelto) for that to prevent blood clots.. I was taken off metoprolol, a beta blocker which slows a fast heart rate, because it lowers my blood pressure too much, making me faint and out of breath, but comes and goes. I also have PVCs but cardiologist did not prescribe anything for that. My cardiologist has never mentioned anything called PAC.

REPLY
@kenny48

I was told PVC's are totally benign. Some people have them almost constantly, and that they lead to nothing more. Pac's on the other hand I was told, can cause blood clots to form and be expelled from the atria. That's what I have been hearing now for ten years. From both my old cardiologist in Florida, and my new one here in North Carolina. As a matter of fact he totally disregarded my PVC's. If you have PAC's they put you on blood thinners. For PVC's nothing.

Jump to this post

Afib can cause blood clots to form not pacs. Almost everyone gets pacs from time to time and they are benign. Almost everyone gets pvcs from time to time and they are usually benign unless there is a structural problem with the heart, heart disease, heart failure, or a genetic disease. Then they become a little more significant as they can lead to vtac or vfib.

REPLY
@yorlik

So where does A-fib fit in the mix? Is it from no big deal to worse: PVC, PAC, then A-fib as worsted of all?

Jump to this post

A-Fib is a more serious form of arrhythmia in which the atria go out of sync with the ventricles, and begin shuddering or vibrating. The ventricles exhibit a fast irregular heartbeat at the wrist as the attempt to get back in sync. Some people have episodic A-Fib, while others are in A-Fib all the time. A-Fib can lead to stroke or heart attack because the blood is not moving efficiently and can clot. For this reason, people with A-Fib take medication to slow their heartbeat and thin their blood. My A-Fib was episodic, lasting about 20 hours per episode. PACs and PVCs are generally benign anomalies but can trigger A-Fib episodes in someone with the condition. My condition was corrected with a catheter ablation. Now I just have leftover PACs and PVCs, which are annoying, but nothing as annoying or serious as A-Fib

REPLY
@kenny48

Would like to hear from a professonal here!

Jump to this post

This is such a great discussion!
Hi @kenny48,

I thought I'd jump in and mention that Mayo Clinic Connect is a patient-to-patient community – the most important ingredient of Connect is its members, like you. It is not designed to be a community for medical experts to give advice, but is a place to learn from all your shared experiences, insights, suggestions, and tips. If you'd like to learn more about Connect, the "About Connect: Who, What & Why" Page, https://connect.mayoclinic.org/page/about-connect/ has some great information.

On the other hand, you can view Mayo Clinic experts talking about various health conditions, treatments, published studies, etc. by visiting the Connect Pages at https://connect.mayoclinic.org/pages/

I also thought I'd post some information about different heart rhythm disorders. An abnormal or irregular heart rhythm is called an arrhythmia, which occurs when the electrical impulses that coordinate your heartbeats don't work properly.

PACs or premature atrial contractions:
– Also known as atrial premature complexes or APCs
– early extra beats that originate in upper chambers of the heart (atria)
– Usually do not require treatment, and many go away on their own

PVCs or premature ventricular contractions:
– Extra heartbeats that begin in the heart's lower chambers (ventricles)
– Occur in people with or without heart disease
– PVCs with a normal heart may not need treatment
– If you have heart disease, your doctor might suggest lifestyle changes and/or medications like beta blockers

Afib or atrial fibrillation:
– The heart's upper chambers beat out of coordination with the lower chambers
– Symptoms may include heart palpitations, shortness of breath, weakness
– Afib also increases your risk of stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications like blood clots forming in the heart, which may circulate to other organs and lead to blocked blood flow (ischemia)

You can find all this information, and much more here, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-arrhythmia/symptoms-causes/syc-20350668

REPLY
@hilly2016

I am 66 yrs old and have had PAC’s for the last 19 years. Have also had various serious heart issues, including ablation, but the PAC’s have always been considered totally benign and non related to my heart issues since they started years before my cardiac problems occurred. But yes, you can get PAC’s after ablations for non related issues. Here’s what’s helped me since I am also one of those that feeels every beat and used to get so freaked out in the beginning that my local ER got to know me even though I am a retired RN! Try not bending down from waist too much, avoid feeling overheated, avoid stress as much as you can, take Magesium 250 mgs/day – my cardiologist actually was the one who recommended this and it really made a huge difference, but check with your MD first, make sure that you’re maintaining your Potassium at a normal level by having a daily banana or coconut water, keep well hydrated but make sure you don’t overdo it since plain water can deplete your Sodium, Potassium and Magnesium, these are all vital for optimal,heart function. Stress, bending over from waist, and overheating are my triggers. Meditation, yoga, also help, I can’t emphasize need to keep stress managed, but Magnesium made an almost instant difference, been taking it along with a daily banana for over 10 years now. At times, if undergoing a lot of stress I can have every other beat be a PAC for a couple of hours, but this is now very rare, on a typical day maybe I will feel 5-10, which is fantastic. Most people have a few per day but they are not aware of them. Some people that just can’t take it have been put on a beta blocker by cardiologist, or Flecainide, but this is for extreme cases because both medicines can have serious side effects. Good luck.

Jump to this post

Posted by hilly2016 @hilly2016, 1 day ago
In reply to @jddart "Yes, I'm one of those people, a "highly sensitive person," who can…" + (show)

….Stress, bending over from waist, and overheating are my triggers. Meditation, yoga, also help,….
——————————————————————————————————————————–

WOW. Triggers! Never considered that! Just thought it was RANDOM… yet… just before my aorta valve replacement surgery I went to emergency room due to supper dizzy, almost falling over – from doing my morning outside animal feeding chores – including BENDING OVER AND CLEANING AND REFILLING WATER BOWLS…. Just after this I had to sit down as totally out of breath… then 30 minutes later off to emergency room…

Now after surgery, doing that same bending over causes my a-fib to kick in hard! I had no idea! I just thought I got it worse by working outside in the heat/humidity in the morning… But now I can relate! WOW!

So this morning I tried to limit my bending over at the waist and I think I am less dizzy than 'normal.'

SO TRIGGERS CAN BRING ON HEAVY or HEAVIER A-FIB. What a concept! I am a believer now. Thanks!

REPLY
@yorlik

Posted by hilly2016 @hilly2016, 1 day ago
In reply to @jddart "Yes, I'm one of those people, a "highly sensitive person," who can…" + (show)

….Stress, bending over from waist, and overheating are my triggers. Meditation, yoga, also help,….
——————————————————————————————————————————–

WOW. Triggers! Never considered that! Just thought it was RANDOM… yet… just before my aorta valve replacement surgery I went to emergency room due to supper dizzy, almost falling over – from doing my morning outside animal feeding chores – including BENDING OVER AND CLEANING AND REFILLING WATER BOWLS…. Just after this I had to sit down as totally out of breath… then 30 minutes later off to emergency room…

Now after surgery, doing that same bending over causes my a-fib to kick in hard! I had no idea! I just thought I got it worse by working outside in the heat/humidity in the morning… But now I can relate! WOW!

So this morning I tried to limit my bending over at the waist and I think I am less dizzy than 'normal.'

SO TRIGGERS CAN BRING ON HEAVY or HEAVIER A-FIB. What a concept! I am a believer now. Thanks!

Jump to this post

Glad to be of help, of course what works for us might not work for someone else, but when I was still working as a nurse I always told my patients to “listen to their bodies”.

REPLY
@hilly2016

Glad to be of help, of course what works for us might not work for someone else, but when I was still working as a nurse I always told my patients to “listen to their bodies”.

Jump to this post

I've taken your suggestions, especially staying well-hydrated and starting a daily regimen of 250 mg of magnesium, and I'm amazed to say that yesterday was my first PAC-free day in months. Of course, it could be a placebo effect, but time will tell. Thanks so much for the suggestions (we already eat bananas every day).

REPLY
@jddart

I've taken your suggestions, especially staying well-hydrated and starting a daily regimen of 250 mg of magnesium, and I'm amazed to say that yesterday was my first PAC-free day in months. Of course, it could be a placebo effect, but time will tell. Thanks so much for the suggestions (we already eat bananas every day).

Jump to this post

wow! How many days did you take thee magnesium before this PAC free day?

REPLY
@yorlik

wow! How many days did you take thee magnesium before this PAC free day?

Jump to this post

Just started, only 1 day. Might be a fluke, but as I said in an earlier post, I get several hours of back to back PACs everyday between lunch and supper. Yesterday was the first day in months that didn't happen.

REPLY

@molly906 At 60 I had my first afib event, the cardiologist put me on diltiazem stayed out of afib for 3 years. Then started having atrial flutter was put on Eliquis and higher doses of diltiazem for 3 weeks then was electrically cardioverted and put on fecainide along with a lower dose of diltiazem and same dose of Eliquis. After 4 cardioversions in 3 months I had a PVI ablation, after the procedure I was symptom free for 12 days then had a pac took a couple of pips of diltiazem and they were gone. I will tell you my staus after my blanking period. PACs and afib are nothing compared to atrial flutter for me Hope that helps.

REPLY
@jddart

Yes, I'm one of those people, a "highly sensitive person," who can feel every heartbeat, especially the wrong beats. Having come out of years of episodes of A-Fib, these strings of PACs and PVCs that last for hours feel too much like A-Fib. I also get SVT mixed in as well, so the whole combination feels like I'm having an episode of A-Fib, even though I know I'm not. It's at the very least annoying, but at worst uncomfortable and unsettling, because it brings back the memory and associated emotions I experienced with A-Fib episodes. My question here is, what can be done about it? I have trouble believing that there's nothing that can change the pattern. Do I need to get more sleep, do I need to stop eating some specific thing, do I need to change my routine, since the patterns seems to be linked to the time of day and the activity I'm doing? Has anyone successfully reduced the frequency of heart rhythm anomalies by changing their lifestyle? That's my question.

Jump to this post

This is also my question. I had a TIA 4/18/18 followed with lone A-Fib. I would randomly go in and out of A-Fib episodes up to 20 times a day. I had ablation on 7/20 this year and am now experiencing SCPCs started minimally and wore a Holter monitor for 48 hrs and had 16 SVPC. It is becoming more frequent as time goes on. Also, the docs think my pericardium effusion has returned. My Mayo docs don’t seem very concerned but it gives me anxiety. Always feels like pressure in my chest and harder to breathe. This all started about 3 weeks ago.

REPLY
@julbee

This is also my question. I had a TIA 4/18/18 followed with lone A-Fib. I would randomly go in and out of A-Fib episodes up to 20 times a day. I had ablation on 7/20 this year and am now experiencing SCPCs started minimally and wore a Holter monitor for 48 hrs and had 16 SVPC. It is becoming more frequent as time goes on. Also, the docs think my pericardium effusion has returned. My Mayo docs don’t seem very concerned but it gives me anxiety. Always feels like pressure in my chest and harder to breathe. This all started about 3 weeks ago.

Jump to this post

Hi Julie, do you mean PVC’s? I am not familiar with SCPC or SVPV. I have had SVT(Supra Ventricular Tachycardia) and PVC’s, as well as A-Fib and PAC’s but never heard of what you are referring to. Having said that, I have also had Pericardial effusion 2-3 x’s, depending on how much fluid is around the heart then it might not be anything to be concerned about, the body may absorb it, or it might remain there without causing you further problems. Yes, one does feel short of breath and pressure on chest especially when lying down, you probably have minimal fluid and that’s why they are not concerned. I would report any increased SOB (shortness of breath), increased pressure or pain and any other adverse symptom to md promptly if you don’t get any improvement.

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.
  Request Appointment