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Premenstrual Bradycardia


mkoven
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here i go again with another round of premenstrual ans symptoms. i seem to feel very short of breath, tired, tight in the chest. i've been wearing my hr monitor, and i looked down today, and as I was feeling crummy, I saw my hr drop into the low 50s, with each drop, corresponding to feeling crummier. anyone else notice this? I'll take my bp, but I think my symptoms are more confined to hr. any theories/explanations? excessive vagal tone? I feel best when my resting hr is in the mid 60s.

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I've always had a very difficult time explaining that when my heart rate drops below 70 bpm I'm in bad shape. From previous monitoring, I know that when I'm sleeping, my heart rate often bottoms out into the 20's. I know this still happens because I dream of passing out when it does. I've often tried to make the case that this is what is causing many of my problems with edema. Evidently, I haven't made that case well enough because even the ANS savvy doctors will look at me and say, "but that isn't bradycardic"....no, it isn't for most people, but apparently it is for ME.

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I have bradycardia a lot with rates down into the 30's. I've had 2 EP doctors tell me that a pacemaker may actually be helpful. Why wouldn't it be? Several people now it seems have described symptomatic bradycardia. I know it won't help the tachy rates but if the feeling crummy is from bradycardia and the pacemaker kept this from happening why would that not help some of our symptoms. I've been agonizing over the pacemaker decision and I'm sure the only way to find out it helps is to have one put in. I just keep hoping the POTS will just magically go away and I won't need a pacemaker in the end. Any thoughts on pacers or has anyone else had one recommended for their brady rates. Down in the 20's is severe bradycardia right ... even if you're sleeping .

Brye

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Hi,

I am in the club of forum women who have a very difficult time with hormone fluctations and menstruation aggravating autonomic symptoms. As I am sure you know, changes in hormone levels can cause many symptoms and effect the balance of the our already dysfunctional autonomic nervous systems. Here is the only specific thought I can speculate about the bradycardia... progesterone is present in the week before a menstrual period, and progesterone is a natural central nervous system depressant. In healthy people, this might be related with increased drowsiness and fatigue, but since slowing of the heart rate would occur in the presence of CNS depression, I think it is feasible to hypothesize that in someone with dysautonomia, bradycardia could result. In fact, this might even occur in healthy women. I just think that the decrease in heart rate might not cause symptoms in a normal person though, but it certainely could in us. That's just my two cents worth and educated guess :).

~ Broken_Shell

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Brye,

I've had heart rates in the 30s for extended periods of time, and I had a pacemaker put in. I was very symptomatic and the pacemaker did help give me more energy. Plus, I don't worry anymore that my heart will just slowly stop beating - probably an irrational fear, but a fear just that same. I had just been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy/congestive heart failure, but not diagnosed with dysautonomia yet. I was diagnosed with that just a little over 2 years ago. I probably had it during the heart problems, though, which was 2 years earlier.

The only downside for me is that you do have to replace pacemakers every 6-10 years, and you cannot get an MRI with one placed. Only CT scans can be done. If you want to PM me, feel free.

Cheers,

Jana

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