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Abnormal EKG...


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Well, I finally called my family doctor about the swelling in my feet I mentioned awhile back. Went in today - had +3 edema...and an abnormal EKG. I have had a number of EKG's before, and all were normal. My family doc called my cardio, and I'm going to see him thursday. they also did labs and urine, results should be in tomorrow. My cardio last I saw him said I may need a heart catheter, I'm worried this abnormal EKG might be the last straw, and I'm so scared to death of having a heart cath. Anyone ever have one before who can offer some consoling?And it would figure this is all coming to be so close to the holidays....

Anyway, I'm totally freaking. They didn't tell me HOW it was abnormal, so I'm calling first thing tomorrow to see if I can get any more info. The nurse who did it said "Great!" and then escorted me to the lab, and off handed, I said "so, the EKG was normal...", and she looked at me like I was an idiot and said "NO, it was ABNORMAL, that's why we're sending you to your cardio" and then she ran off, offering no other words of wisdom. Okay, what part of "Great!" was supposed to infer ABNORMAL....???

Anyway, I'm wondering how this wil all unfold. Needless to say, I've been feeling like absolute sh#$ health wise. It's taking a serious toll on me, my marriage, and my little girl. I'm really battling some serious depression because of it all...hopefully this will all lead to answers, and proper treatment, and someday, NORMALCY...but right now, I'm treading water....

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I've had a heart catheter. It's not that big a deal--and you'll have anesthesia, which I did not have because it would have messed up the study results (I was a volunteer for a study at NIH). The only thing that's a bit of a nuissance is how long you have to lay still afterward.

I guess what I'd want to know is, what is the point of the catheter? Is it to do an ablation? If that's the case, I'd suggest getting another opinion before you do anything-- and ablation, once done, is not reversible.

You need to find out more information, such as what, exactly, was the problem with the EKG. And, if the doctor suggests a catheter, what does he/she hope to gain from that?


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I had a heart cath at the age of 27, just 3 days after my birthday. I was the youngest person they had ever done at that lab. They had to special order a ped cath kit as I have small vessels. I was awake and had alot of trouble do to a iodine allergy, even with meds it was tough. I am glad I had it done and everything was fine. Laying around was hard but ok. I watched tv and just talked with my mom.


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I had one and it was a total breeze, I just snoozed through it, and only had to lie still for 1 1/2 hours because of some new type of dressing. I was on my way home in 2 1/2 hours start to finish. They may be looking at valves., and venticular function, however it seems they could find that out with an echo, which would be just as accurate. The EKG might show some injury to the muscle from a small clot or something. Hard to tell. I hate it when doctors don't explain stuff. I usually keep them till they do as I don't give a rip if they hate me or think I'm stupid. Typically if swollen ankles are caused by a cardiac problem, it's either from a valve or a very large heart attack which you should certainly have been aware of. There are people who have what are know as silent heart attacks. They never knew they had one. Just an "indigestion" or something, but typically these attacks are pretty minor. So they would want to look at your vessels to make sure there nothing major. like a big blockage going on. Coronary spasms can cause changes too. So it's really hard to say. Except I would be more inclined to be looking at your mitral valve than anything. Did he hear a murmur? Don't be scared, I had a treadmill that was abnormal and the cath was normal. Don't worry till they tell you to. The cateters are very small and you don't feel them. At all. They go in your groin, which is deadened and thread them through the artery to the heart. You never feel any of it. Sometimes they have you cough or turn a little. But they give you something to relax you, so you won't care. Well that's just my steroid induced input. I'm a little talkative on them in case you haven't noticed. But please let me reiterate, having an abnormal EKG can mean a million things. If you have tachycardia, your EKG is abnormal, so we've all had one. I have a Q wave which is indicative of a heart attack, but I've never had one. So who knows. I'd kind of insist on an echo first if was me, unless he specifically tells you he's looking for a blockage of an artery. But that's just me. Good luck. morgan

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Oh no! I am so sorry your EKG was abnormal -- is this the first time that's happened? I am sure you've had EKGs before, right?

What is +3 edema? Does that mean bad pitting edema? I have edema that's significant but not pitting. I just had another echo done and it was normal overall ... although when I got a copy of it and read the fine print, I had many specific abnormalities (more on that in another post).

I would definitely want to know a) why the cath; and :) if you have one, what will be done if something doesn't look right? Ablations are usually detrimental to POTS/NCS patients.

Hang in there. I hear you on the depression. I've never been depressed a day in my life ... until about 9 months into this crazy illness. It has to get better ... that's what I keep telling myself.


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Amy~ yeah, I've had plenty of EKG's - all were normal before. They did blood/urine to try and determine if the edema is from the toprol, my heart, or my kidneys (I have a hx of renal failure....) but, I'm waiting to hear.....when they call, I'm going to ask more about the EKG - what was abnormal about it, etc. My cardiologist never said anything about an ablation. I think he was considering the cath just as a diagnostic procedure, know what I mean? But who knows if he

s even considering that....it's just me jumping to conclusions because he had mentioned doing it before, if i don't improve with meds.

Anyway, IU appreiciate all the support. I'll keep you posted.

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