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Does Xanax Lower Heart Rate?


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Have you tried it? I have and I think it does. Maybe sometimes. But it's only anecdotal, and I will explain.

I have a seizure disorder, one that used to be nocturnal grand mals but I got them under control with medication. Then I started having "breakthrough" partial seizures (same time of night, same time of month-related to hormones) that I now see are very similar to autonomic activation. They start by waking me up with heart racing, proceed to nausia and head pressure buildup, heat flash, and then all-over body shaking. When I recognized this, I was given xanax, and it WORKED! Onset was around 15 minutes after I started taking it, but I just felt an over-all sense of calm and it was wonderful. And since stress increased my chances of having nocturnal seizures, I would take xanax before stressful events like public presentations and such. No problems.

BUT. That was at the beginning. This past year, symptoms have worsened, both seizures and the autonomic component. I have low blood pressure anyway, and there have been times at night where I've felt like it was going to simply Stop. There was a sense that my heart was so slow that it was petering away. I wish I had taken my bp at those times, but I didn't. Anyway, there was a night when I took the xanax and it calmed me down so much that I had a real fear that my heart was going to stop. My husband was there, and I woke him up and made him stay awake with me because, heck, when the heart stops, there's nothing I can do about it myself. Breathing faster wasn't going to fix that! Totally out of my control, and that was scary. I haven't taken xanax since then because I'm too afraid. :(

However, I had a daytime episode (which was highly unusual) a few months ago so the Medcheck place sent me to the ER (I'm guessing he thought I was having a heart attack because my fingers were numb). They loaded me up with ativan there and I didn't have that problem. I had others, tho....! Ativan made me very loopy, with the walls spinning and everything. They sent me home with a script for it, but my neuro said to stick with xanax, as ativan is longer lasting and stronger.

So that's the longer version of "maybe". I think I'd probably be ok taking it during the daytime when I don't usually have cardiac weirdness, but I'm now too afraid to take it at night. Because of ME. YMMV!!! Before I had feelings of heart slowing down on its own, I did not have that problem with xanax.

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I had the same sensation with the Xanax and now I am also afraid of it.

I was at a public place trying to be active very anxious and feeling symptomatic...took 1/4 of a Xanax and I think some of it accidentally absorbed into my tongue.... Next thing you know I had the sensation my heart stopped, felt my carotid and felt nothing, then it took off and went up to 150-I know cause I had my monitor on.

And I got the extreme anxiety head spinning it felt like I had od'd or something.

I went outside and laid in the grass and it was a 911 moment.

It took me about 30-40 minutes to recover.

I figured they always say you won't die from anxiety or panic...so....I feel safer without it.

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