24 January 2010

40 bpm = tranquility

something i have noticed recently. as you are all aware i suffer with tachycardia when standing. my heart races, and im sure looking back ive suffered with this since around the age of nine when i came back from a holiday in spain and had to be put in isolation due to a tummy bug. never felt the same afterwards.

well a few days ago i was sitting down, outside a cafe in cp, and i felt strangly calm, you know not a care in the world type of feeling. i dont know why but i took my pulse, now seeing that a normal pulse is between 60-100bpm, mine was 40-42 bpm. when i spoke to the gp last week, she said dont let your pulse get below 40, because this is the time the docs consider pacemakers. between 40-60 is low. below that is scary low, or so i have been told. im sure my pulse has connections with my anxiety. to feel so tranquil, yes tranquil when my pulse is so low, why would that be? yet when i stand and it rides over the 100 beats of course i feel wonky and nervy. im on beta blockers to lower the pulse whilst standing, yet i cant take a big dose because when im sitting or laying it goes too low. i think im getting nearer to the answer concerning my anxiety.


Nechtan said...

Hi Em,

It does sound like you are starting to understand your situation a whole lot clearer. I would imagine a high pulse rate would be enough to make anyone feel anxious and would explain a lot. It would be interesting to see if the high pulse rate is causing your anxiety or a symptom of anxiety.

All the best


Coffeecup said...

Hi Emma, how extreme to go from 40 beats to over 100! As soon as you had the POTS diagnosis confirmed I assumed that there was the answer to your anxiety symptoms. It does seem that the panic is caused by this physical problem (reading into the situation from here). Hopefully you'll have this erratic heartbeat managed sometime very soon and the anxiety will disappear.

40 beats, wow! Gosh that's what you call relaxed!! Wishing you WELL sweetie, very soon. xxxx

Melinda said...

Looking forward to seeing your knitted scarf! First knit in a year - I'm really happy for you!

Em said...

hi nechtan

would be interesting to find out whats causing my anxiety. would patterns still be set if the chemical reasons for anxiety cease? that would be an interesting one. hope your wifes better soon.


hi steph

unfortunately thats the nature of pots, a very high heart rate. they have tried me on a combination of tablets,which is what im on now, i think unless i see a pots specialist which im going to ask at the next appointment i dont think the present doc can do very much.

its a very weird feeling, feeling almost tranquil, in previous anxious situations. im not saying that i dont get anxious no more, cause i do especially before appointments. but fourty beats is soooo slow.


hi melinda

i nearly took a picture today but the light was so bad, im waiting for a better day. the scarf is coming along fine, but i do have to have an aching next if i knit which is unfortunate. lovely to feel the needles again. x

Achelois said...

Hi there Emma

As a child and into teenage and now adulthood - medics often find me with no definable pulse and ridiculously low blood pressure. Take that standing up and it all changes. Having EDS i got all fed up with seeing consultants and the merry go round so got off the treadmill. So turned down the Proffesor Matthias stuff. I know I have POTs and not as bad as you but do have the EDS diagnosis. I remember just as you do a scenario like your bug thing which is completely different but involved about the same age staying with family friends and going to a pet shop - half aquarium which was hot! and half pet shop ridiculously cold - fish - pets - hot cold hot cold equalled me flat on the floor in a dead faint. Same thing repeated on a visit to Italy on my own VERY scary with an Italian family with two teenage boys and me just 13 - so pretty high stress levels all round. But thats a whole other story. A convent girl sent to italy like that what were my parents thinking good grief. Anyway - hot Italy - cold freezer shop - me again in a dead faint. Bang up to date - hot bath get out - me with my dodgy autonomic internal heating system on wonky = faint. Queue = faint. I don't faint these days I avoid all situations related to it. Which means I never stand still without moving from one foot to the other - the fact I can barely stand anyhow these days is another story but teaching myself stuff has been hard. POTS is crap and having anxiety is crap which came first is a bit of a chicken and egg thing. I hear they have related the anxiety gene or something to EDS as well and that so doesn't surpirse me.

I think in a way being an expert patient because you have had to learn fast about the ins and outs of you having POTS and because you are intelligent you will of course analise it )please excuse my dreadful spelling and verbosity today. If you are tranquil thats great. My feeling is my blood pressure is naturally low so high for me is normal. It may be that in an effort to control your POTS and anxiety you have developed the tenique that runners and divers etc get at being quite happy at low bpm.. who knows. I know that I am on the outside of normal with my dodgy genetics but as I get older I care so little these days about the why's and the wherefore's of whether my normal baselines are the same as any one elses or not. Is that a bad thing i ask myself I hope not.

Have they suggested that wearing those support sock thingies would help (I know I know not a high fashion accesory) and I know when we switched family to low salt for other half needing less salt I had to go back to good old sea salt otherwise I would stand up get that black and wooly round the edges thing and faint flat out on the floor.

I am I have been told opposite to the norm on the pulse rate situation - I wonder if you are too.

Also its interesting you relate some of your symptoms as far back as 12 which is when hormones and girls get crazy. Many with EDS have been fairly symptom free (not me but some) and then puberty kicks in and everything including their autonomic system goes haywire. EDS and hormones are a nightmare.

I wonder if there have been any viable studies done on hormonal changes/cycles and POTS.

I have warbled on and on so I am off. Having said not much at all I think. I hope you find your answers. I gave up long ago taking the advice from a pain management psychologist when she said that some people lose their way trying to find answers with a chronic condition instead of distracting themselves with life. So I like you knit (although badly now) and stuff instead.

I hope you find the answers - I think they hiding in that camper van somewhere!!!

Jokes aside... I know its crap crap crap having POTS and I just wish it would bugger off and leave you alone.

Take care Emma Thinking of you. Sorry for the very long comment I have such a severe pain in my spine I think its made my brain hyperactive and talk bla bla....


Em said...

hi achelois

i love reading messages, please dont feel they are too long, because they dont take long to read.

as im reading through you message i can see me in them. the fainting, the blackness around the edges before the faint. ive not spoken to a real life potsy-eds person before and its great comparing notes. makes me feel not so odd!!!

i know my pulse has dipped since taken the beta blockers, im in a catch-22 at the moment, i cant take a bigger dose because it affects my laying pulse, yet my standing pulse is still high just not too high like before which is a plus.

heat does me in, warm doesnt. i can remember travelling when i was a teenager( i think you have something there with the hormones effecting the autonomic system) i would often get way to hot and the darkness would descend upon my eyes, i never actually lost conciousness abroad but the black would come.

i think im still searching for answers, a tiny bit of me is aware that 'this could be it', but on bad days if i thought this was true then i would give up. so i plod on, naively thinking that one day i will morph into this different healthy person.

oh how i wish i could climb into the camper and be off to somewhere in italy right now. one of my favourite countries. i cant imagine you going there all alone at age 13, that must of been scary.

im just off to get some vit b12 shots in an hour. it means going out into the cold. bit nervous as to how they are going to make me feel. xxxxxx

Laura said...

I noticed the same sort of feeling when I tried avena sativa tincture (oats- also a sedative). I took my pulse and it had lowered it to the 60s, which felt so calm and 'nice' for me, when it's usually in the 80s (sitting) and 100s standing.

It's a nice feeling, being at peace, relaxed. I used to have it, and I miss it.

Em said...

hi laura

the feeling literally feels like being on a mill pond, instead of the rough ocean. which instead of feeling unwell and anxious is a lovely feeling even if it lasts for a few minutes. xxxx