Types of Arrhythmias

Most of us take our heart’s continual and steady beating for granted, that is, until our heart skips beats or starts to palpitate, or race. When our heart gets out of sync, either by pulsating in an irregular rhythm or suddenly speeding up, we’re said to have an arrhythmia. An irregular heartbeat is one of the most common reasons people see cardiologists and may be benign or life threatening; one-third of all arrhythmias occur in normal hearts, and rarely are cause for concern.

Here are the basic types of arrhythmias, which I’ll get into below:

  • Atrial fibrillation, or “a-fib”
  • Ectopic (skipped) heartbeats
  • Premature heartbeats: PACs and PVCs
  • Ventricular tachycardia
  • Ventricular fibrillation, or “v-fib”

Understanding Arrhythmias

As long as you and your physician know what kind of arrhythmia you’re dealing with, abnormal heartbeat changes are very treatable. If your heartbeat is abnormally high, and you’re not exercising or emotionally upset, you are said to have tachycardia. If your heart rate slows to less than 50 beats per minute, you have bradycardia. A person who experiences both has brady-tachy syndrome.

  • Atrial fibrillation

Sometimes referred to as “A-fib” or “AF”, atrial fibrillation is the most common type of serious arrhythmia. A-fib occurs when the heart’s upper two chambers (atria) do not contract in response to the pacemaker’s electrical impulses; rather, they start reacting to various other electrical signals scattered throughout them. Think of being on a guided museum tour where you can’t follow the tour guide because all the other tourists are shouting out directions and blocking your view. When the pacemaker is drowned out by other electrical signals, the atria do not forcefully contract and send blood into the ventricles to be pumped throughout the body. Instead, the atria “fibrillate,” or start rapidly vibrating, which can cause heart rate to increase up to 250 beats per minute.

A person may feel the fibrillation as quivering, or may not feel it at all. Other signs of A-fib include dizziness, weakness, shortness of breath, or general flu-like symptoms. Most people can tolerate the high and/or low heartbeats of A-fib for temporary periods; however, when episodes last more than 24 hours or heart rate variance is extreme, the heart can experience considerable strain, which may lead to heart attacks or even congestive heart failure. Regular occurrences of A-fib can also increase a person’s risk of stroke. Because blood is not forcibly contracted into the ventricles, but flows into them by virtue of gravity, it pools in the atria and the heart ultimately pumps less blood through the body. Eventually, clots may form on atrial walls, then break off and enter the arteries.

While A-fib does occur in healthy hearts, more often than not it is associated with heart disease. A-fib may be due to long-term high blood pressure, valvular disease, enlarged atria, or atria that do not contract properly. Malfunction of the heart’s electrical conduction system due to age or metabolic states like hyperthyroidism can also lead to A-fib. Most people experience recurrent A-fib, meaning that their condition comes and goes. The primary goals in treating recurrent A-fib are to normalize heart rate and rhythm through various therapies and to prevent the formation of blood clots (see “Arrhythmia Treatments” below).

Ectopic heartbeats and premature heartbeats (PACs and PVCs)

Usually harmless, an ectopic beat is a skipped or extra heartbeat. Ectopic beats may occur for no apparent reason, or may be due to another issue such as an electrolyte imbalance in the blood, ischemia (lack of oxygen) caused by inadequate blood supply to the heart, or heart disease. Testing for ectopic beats is advisable in order to rule out other types of cardiac arrhythmias, though treatment is usually not necessary unless the irregular beats occur very frequently, are severe, or due to an underlying cause.

Premature heartbeats are extremely common, usually harmless, and may not cause any symptoms. If the premature beat occurs in the one of the top chambers of the heart it is a premature atrial contraction, or PAC. When in one of the ventricles, it is a premature ventricular contraction, or PVC. While the PAC or PVC may feel like a “skipped” beat, it is occurring earlier than expected and is followed by a quick pause.

PACs and PVCs usually occur due to stress, use of stimulants (caffeine or other drugs) or alcohol, or low potassium states. They can be caused by heart conditions, though, such as lack of oxygen, mitral valve prolapse, or aging conduction systems. Most cardiologists will not prescribe drugs to treat premature heartbeats unless they are happening frequently and on a regular basis, and are accompanied by heart disease.

The next two types of arrhythmias can be deadly, and require immediate attention, especially in people who have experienced heart failure or whose heart muscles are inflamed, dilated, and don’t pump well, or when their left ventricle is dilated.

  • Ventricular tachycardia

Ventricular tachycardia, or “V-tach,” characterizes an intense and prolonged racing of the heart and is like a runaway PVC. V-tach becomes dangerous if it lasts for more than a few seconds; it can also turn into ventricular fibrillation.

  • Ventricular fibrillation

With ventricular fibrillation, or “V-fib,” chaotic electrical signals throw the ventricles off rhythm and they begin to quiver or vibrate. This is very dangerous because when the ventricles do not forcibly contract, the heart can’t supply itself and the rest of the body with life-sustaining blood. V-fib may occur during a heart attack or in a person whose heart is already weakened due to disease or another condition.

Causes of Arrhythmia

While changes in heart rate are a normal part of living, the pattern of electrical charges that maintain heartbeats can get easily thrown off. The following situations often lead to or exacerbate an arrhythmia, especially when chronic:

  • More than just jitters: Caffeine overdose – Depending on a person’s sensitivity, drinking too much coffee, tea or caffeinated soda can trigger rapid or skipped heartbeats. A nervous system stimulant, caffeine also acts as a diuretic, and can contribute to magnesium deficiency, which may lead to arrhythmias.
  • Electrolyte imbalances – Low potassium and other electrolyte imbalances in the blood can also cause arrhythmias. As electrolytes such as potassium, magnesium, sodium help conduct electric charge through the body, a balance of them is necessary to ensure proper muscle contraction and nerve impulses. We lose electrolytes when we sweat (or suffer from chronic diarrhea) and have to replenish them through food, drinks or supplements.
  • Sugar shock – Eating too much sugar in one sitting can cause a person’s insulin levels to surge, which can lead to electrolyte imbalance due to potassium deficiency. Too much chronic insulin release can also can cause arterial inflammation, as well as affect overall hormonal balance (including adrenal response). Researchers believe that oxidative stress and inflammation underlie AF because these problems affect localized electrical activity in atrial muscle tissue. Individuals with AF also have significantly higher levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, in their blood.
  • More stress than your heart can handle – Like sugar overdose, stress overload can also disrupt hormonal balance, and cause the heart to continually beat faster while the body chronically operates on sympathetic nervous system overdrive. Stress is now considered a risk factor for hypertension and heart disease. Interestingly enough, more sudden deaths due to lethal arrhythmias or heart attacks occur on Mondays, as workers experience an “outpouring” of stress hormones as they gear up for work.
  • Drugs and medications – It’s not just illegal stimulant drugs like cocaine which can cause your heart to beat irregularly, prescription drugs like Ritalin (methyphenidate), which prescribed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, tricyclic antidepressants and even birth control pills can disrupt heartbeat. Sometimes the drugs used to correct the arrhythmia, itself, such as digitalis and calcium channel blockers can worsen it. Over-the-counter cold medications and asthma sprays containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine may also speed up or bring on a more forceful heart rate.
  • Cigarette smoking – A cardiovascular nightmare for several reasons, cigarettes also contain nicotine, a stimulant drug, which can cause a racing heartbeat. Quit, if you haven’t already.
  • Alcohol – While many health experts agree that a glass of wine a day is a health mainstay, for people with arrhythmias, alcohol can exacerbate the situation. This is especially an issue during the holidays when people tend to mirthfully over-consume alcohol and food.
  • Overeating and eating disorders – Regular overeating, which can lead to overweight and obesity, can also increase risk of arrhythmias. Interleukin 6, a pro-inflammatory cytokine, is produced in fat tissue; hence people with excess body fat are more prone to low-grade systemic inflammation. Anorexia and bulimia are also associated with increased risk of ventricular arrhythmias.
  • Chemical food additives – As a rule of thumb, the more natural and simple ingredients in a food or drink product, the better. Chemical additives like monosodium glutamate (MSG), a form of glutamate added to food to make it tastier, are excitotoxins: they over stimulate brain neurons to the point of cell death. Not only do excitotoxins play a role in the development of depression, obesity and degenerative brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, but they also contribute to strokes, especially in people who are magnesium-deficient.
  • Environmental toxins – Pesticides, herbicides, cadmium, lead, mercury, and aluminum are also excitotoxins. Exposure to mercury from vaccines, toxic fish or dental fillings and lead from paints, batteries and some drinking water can cause oxidative stress and poison enzyme systems. Toxins also tend to consume magnesium, an electrolyte which support healthy heart function and structural integrity. Air pollution has also been shown to increase stress response, which can increase risk of arrhythmia in people with pre-existing heart disease and abnormal heart rate variability.
  • Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) – Some radio frequency (RF) emissions are now known to directly affect heart rate. A recent study showed that exposure to cordless phone RF (and comparatively, WiFi) directly increased heart rate, even causing tachycardia, and increased sympathetic nervous system activity (adrenal response), as demonstrated by heart rate variability (HRV) measurements. Wireless RF emissions also suppress HRV. Grounding, or attuning to the Earth’s natural electromagnetic potential, can counteract negative RF-related cardiac effects by balancing autonomic nervous system activity (as shown through improved HRV).
  • Sudden strenuous exercise – “Warming up” for at least 10 minutes before exercising heavily allows your heart to gradually adjust to increasing activity. Sudden bursts of activity catch the heart off guard and can lead to palpitations. It’s also important to engage in a 10-minute cool down after exercising, especially when exercising your legs. Mixing physical stress with competitiveness is another bad combination, so try to not get too emotionally invested in the outcome of whatever activity you’re engaged in.

Diagnosing Arrhythmia

While some people recognize that something’s not right with their heartbeat, others may be asymptomatic. If you notice a heartbeat irregularity or experience other cardiac symptoms like shortness of breath or chest pain, your physician can perform an echocardiogram (ECG or EKG) to test for arrhythmia and determine if it is serious, i.e. if heart muscle or valvular disease is at issue. Since palpitations not may occur during the actual EKG test, you may be instructed to wear a portable Holter monitor, which will record your heart rhythm during normal activities to demonstrate what type of arrhythmia you have and how frequently it is occurring.

Misdiagnosis happens, though, as chronic panic disorder (CPD) is often confused with arrhythmia. The recurrent episodes of fear and/or discomfort that characterize CPD can lead to excessive adrenaline release, and result in chest pain and heart palpitations. On a related note, EMF exposure may be an easily overlooked cause of arrhythmia; doctors need to start asking patients who experience irregular heartbeat about their use of cellular and cordless phones, wireless internet, baby monitors, etc.

Sinatra Solutions: Arrhythmia Treatments

The goal with arrhythmia treatments is to bring the heart back into rhythm. For otherwise healthy people with occasional bouts of arrhythmia, this can usually be accomplished through a few lifestyle changes: reducing stress, adding specific foods to the diet, and supplementing with a few key nutrients. People with more serious conditions like recurrent A-fib coupled with heart disease, ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation, may also require pharmaceutical and even surgical interventions.

  • Relax…

Uncontrolled emotional stress not only causes arrhythmias, but is linked to the development of many health problems including hypertension, type II diabetes and obesity. Have you ever heard the saying, “10 percent is circumstances and 90 percent is how you deal with them”? Learn to deal with day-by-day stressors in a healthy way by cultivating lifestyle habits that help you relax.

Mind-body therapies like yoga, meditation and Tai Chi are particularly helpful to train your mind to more calmly process seemingly stressful information. These therapies also encourage deep abdominal breathing, which is especially important for people with arrhythmias. Deep breathing improves HRV, which increases your ability to cope with stress while reducing your likelihood of experiencing a sudden cardiac event. Regular, moderate exercise is great for keeping stress at bay, and activities like playing with your pets or children, getting a massage, gardening, playing games, or engaging in some kind of creative project may also relax you. The trick is to, on a regular basis, generate more activity from the parasympathetic branch of your autonomic nervous system, and decrease sympathetic branch activity.

  • Heart-smart eats

Cold-water fish like salmon, scrod, mackerel, sea trout and even sardines are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown in studies to protect against sudden cardiac death caused by lethal arrhythmias. Anti-inflammatory omega-3s also relax the smooth muscle in blood vessel walls to keep blood pressure low, and can help keep the blood thin. Make sure to avoid farm raised (look for “wild-caught”) fish or fish that have otherwise been exposed to environmental pollutants like methyl mercury.

Consuming an abundance of dark, leafy greens like chlorophyll-rich kale and spinach can help prevent arrhythmias, as these veggies are full of magnesium. Magnesium, a mineral required for over 300 enzymatic reactions in the body, is also found in foods like avocados, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and whole grains. As low potassium levels can also cause arrhythmias, snacking on bananas, oranges, figs, and raisins, and incorporating more yogurt, whole grains and potatoes into your diet can help you get enough of this mineral important for electrolyte balance. A diet high in potassium is associated with lowered risk of stroke-related death.

In general, sticking to an anti-inflammatory diet most of the time supports cardiovascular health.

  • Nutraceutical supports

Nutritional supplements that can help stabilize erratic heart rhythms include:

  • Fish oil (2 to 4 grams daily) – Just like fish, capsules of fish oil are full of anti-inflammatory omega-3s.
  • Coenzyme Q10 (100 to 300 mg daily) – A sound intervention for arrhythmias, CoQ10 stabilizes membranes of the electrical conduction system. An antioxidant which helps protect against oxidative stress, CoQ10 also plays a crucial role in production of energy molecules (adenosine triphosphate, or ATP) that fuel heart function. For this reason alone, CoQ10 is probably the best supplement you can take for your heart. As a preventative and restorative nutrient, CoQ10 fights the heart disease which can mean the difference between a benign and malignant arrhythmia in many cases.
  • L-carnitine (1 to 3 grams daily) – Like CoQ10, L-carnitine assists in the production of ATP molecules which can prevent the heart from becoming diseased. As an antioxidant and vasodilator, L-carnitine is particularly helpful in the treatment of coronary artery disease: it helps deliver oxygen to blocked arteries and improves blood flow, while protecting against damage to the arterial lining.
  • D-ribose (5 to 15 grams daily): Supplementing with D-ribose helps the body maintain a steady pool of ATP as reserve energy. This is particularly important when the body’s ability to recycle ATP is exceeded by overall ATP expenditure, which is at issue in people with heart disease and more chronic or otherwise serious arrhythmias. While the body makes ribose, extra may be needed if energy reserves are facing depletion.
  • Magnesium (400 to 800 mg daily) – Essential for healthy heart function, magnesium also helps the body generate ATP. Deficiency (less than 130 mg per day) can result in electrolyte imbalances that may cause ectopic heartbeats.
  • Potassium (500 to 1,000 mg daily) – Crucial for the overall functioning of nerves and muscles, potassium is particularly important for maintaining proper heart rhythms. A mineral that helps counteract the blood-pressure-raising effects of sodium, potassium helps relax smooth muscle in blood vessel walls. People who take diuretics are especially vulnerable to potassium deficiency, as are people who consume excess caffeine and/or alcohol. Note: people with kidney problems should not supplement with potassium.
  • Hawthorn berry (500 mg, two to three times daily) – An herb with powerful antioxidant qualities, hawthorn can enhance coronary circulation and increase cardiac energy levels, and is often prescribed as a substitute for digitalis, one of the most commonly ordered medications for improving contractibility in a weakened heart; people taking digitalis or other hypertensive medications should talk to their physicians before supplementing with hawthorn berry.
  • Vitamin C (1,000 mg in divided doses with food) – As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin C helps combat arterial inflammation (people with AF have much higher levels of CRP in their blood streams) and helps keep blood pressure down. People tend to become depleted in vitamin C when under a lot of psycho-emotional stress, which increases their risk of stroke-related death. Essential for tissue growth and repair, vitamin C also plays an important role in the proper utilization and absorption of calcium and iron; as too much vitamin C can bring about iron overload states, people with hemochromatosis or thalassemia major should be especially careful not to ingest more than 200 mg per day.

People with occasional AF, and with normal heart size and valve function are at lower risk of blood clots, and can usually manage the viscosity of their blood by taking natural blood thinning supports like:

  • Fish oil (2 to 3 grams daily).
  • Garlic (1 to 2 grams daily in capsule form, or ½ to one clove raw garlic per day) – Not only is garlic a powerful antimicrobial agent (it can combat at least 23 different types of bacteria and 61 types of fungi) that helps to enhance the immune system, it is also a powerful anticoagulant; so much so, that it should not be taken in conjunction with oral anticoagulants like aspirin or Coumadin, or injectable agents like heparin. Garlic also has an ACE-inhibiting quality (ACE inhibitors are a class of antihypertensive drugs) and has been shown to help lower blood pressure.
  • Nattokinase (100 mg daily) – Nattokinase is an enzyme derived from fermented soybeans. It has powerful clot-busting and blood thinning potential. Nattokinase may be found in health food stores in supplement form.
  • Limbrokinase (20 mg capsules taken on an empty stomach 1 time per day) – Like nattokinase, lumbrokinase is an enzyme which helps prevent blood from forming and even helps dissolve existing clots.
  • Vitamin E (200 to 300 IU) – This fat-soluble anticoagulant and vasodilator helps reduce risk of heart attacks. As an antioxidant, it prevents damage to arterial lining and helps stabilize plaques. As there are 8 different types of vitamin E, it’s best to supplement with a mixed tocopherol product that contains gamma-tocopherol and tocotrienols.
  • Bromelain (600 mg) – An enzyme derived from pineapple, bromelain helps keep blood viscosity at a healthy levels. Not just for heart health, bromelain also contains chemicals that interfere with the growth of tumor cells, and, as an anti-inflammatory agent, can help prevent or reduce joint pain and swelling.

Note: People taking Coumadin (warfarin) should consult their physicians before supplementing with blood thinning nutrients to avoid thinning the blood too much.

Pharmaceutical and Surgical Interventions

People with troublesome A-fib or ventricular arrhythmias are candidates for anti-arrhythmic medications such as digoxin, which helps control ventricular contractions, calcium channel blockers, which can help regulate heartbeat, and beta blockers (Inderal, Lopressor, Corgard) which are used to control high heart rates. Other medications like Amiodarone, which relax heart muscle, may also be prescribed. Many of these drugs have a high rate of dangerous side effects, though, and can trigger arrhythmias and even sudden death. Natural treatments may be safer bets, unless patients are monitored in the hospital for negative side effects.

People who experience A-fib on occasion, and otherwise have healthy hearts, may benefit more from a hospital intervention known as electrical cardioversion. By sending a jolt of electricity into the atria through defibrillator paddles applied to the chest, this shock therapy helps reset a racing heart without risking side effects associated with antiarrhythmic drugs. Cardioversion is generally useful for people who have not been suffering from A-fib for more than six months.

As people with recurrent AF have to watch out for blood clotting, anticoagulation medications like Coumadin (warfarin) are usually warranted, especially if structural heart disease or other heart disease risk factors like family history, diabetes, leaky heart valves, or high blood pressure are present. While aspirin and natural blood thinning agents like fish oil, garlic, and nattokinase are effective blood thinners, they are not as effective as Coumadin.

In some cases, more invasive procedures may be necessary. Some patients with very slow heart rates may need a mechanical pacemaker implanted, as may patients with very high heart rates or heart rates which fluctuate between both extremes for whom medication has proved ineffective. Catheter ablation, another procedure which involves sending radio frequencies into the heart’s electrical “problem areas” to stop abnormal rhythms in their tracks, may also useful, especially when repeated; a recent French study (Weerasooriya R, et al.) demonstrated that arrhythmia-free rates significantly increased in patients with whom the procedure was performed twice.

Patients with life-threatening arrhythmias like ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia, may benefit from an automated implantable cardioverter defibrillator (AICD) devices. Surgically implanted into a patient’s abdominal wall, the AICD works like a “mini-defibrillator”: based on a programmed limit, it senses when the heart is electrically over-stimulated and fires an electrical discharge to break up the offending rhythm.

For more information on natural heart strengtheners, check out Lower Your Blood Pressure in Eight Weeks and The Sinatra Solution: Metabolic Cardiology.

References:

© 2013 HeartMD Institute. All rights reserved.

Leave a Reply

54 Comments

  1. Helen

    on May 26, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    Reply

    Since I have A-fib I tried to enter the A-F program at Mass General Hosp. I was ineligible because I am “asymptomatic” whatever that means. My MGH cardiologist had referred me, but he doesn’t want any longer to do echograms. Therefore I can’t follow the health of my valves, the size of my heart chambers, or my ejection fraction #. This first-rate place is letting me down. Maybe I’ll have to follow your latest publication about reversing deadly heart disease and treat myself as best I can. I may do something wrong, but neglect isn’t right either. You explain a great deal, provide many benign choices. I take 12.5 mg metoprolol/day + 81 mg aspirin alt. days. A liver MD helps me fend off autoimmune hepatitis w/ Dr. Berkson’s
    trio of antioxidents.

  2. Matt

    on July 30, 2013 at 12:34 am

    Reply

    I had recently purchased a handheld 3-lead ECG heart monitor and placed it on my mother. Much to our dismay, her ECG amplitude was very low. Her QRS mas more like a P wave. I talked her into taking Co-Q10, bought her a treadmill, and a case of bottled water. Three weeks down the road, we are as taken aback by the improvement as much as we were about the issue. Keep in mind that although we both have medical backgrounds, our experiment was not conducted in a lab and we do not have a control group. None the less, the before and after is undeniable and we believe that the combination of offering the heart something to do, good hydration as well as adding the Co-Q10 gave it the ability dramatically improve in both conductivity and efficiency.

  3. Cecil Carver

    on November 19, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Reply

    •Environmental toxins – Pesticides, herbicides,. Would Agent Orange fall into this category to cause Arrhythmias and possibly later Sick Sinus Syndrome? If so would that be progressive over several years or an immediate affect? Thank you.

  4. Sam S.

    on November 22, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    Reply

    In mid September I ended up in the hospitalized and was diagnosed with AFib, I’m 62. Monday my mother, 86 was admitted to the hospital and was diagnosed with AFib. Last year my sister-in-law who lives in the house next door with my brother, mid 40s has been with heartrate problems and is currently still undiagnosed with no known cause. So 33% of the inhabitants of one house and 100% of those in the other. We have city water but, they’ve been digging up and replacing many of the old water lines due to holes in the pipes. This area has had a lot of industries, gas stations etc in the past and who knows what may have been dumped or leaked into the ground. What chemicals might cause issues and could be checked for in water samples? Coincidental?

  5. HMDI Editor

    on November 22, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    Reply

    Hi Sam, Do you live near a cell phone tower, or have wireless devices like Wi-Fi, smart meters, or cordless phones sending signals through your house? Cordless phones, which operate at the same frequency as Wi-Fi, have been shown to affect heart rate and/or rhythm – see http://www.heartmdinstitute.com/health-topics/emf-sensitivity/cell-phones-and-health/188-cell-phone-radiation-affects-brain-function – we suggest ditching the cordless phones and Wi-Fi for land lines and wired Internet and severely limiting use of cell phones. Try to avoid living near smart meters too. And yes, chemicals / environmental toxins can also lead to arrhythmias – see article above.
    Best of heath and happiness.

  6. Casey B

    on January 4, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Reply

    Hi, reading your article with great interest. I am currently looking for some advice on a future treatment plan for myself. I was diagnosed at 16 with Wolf Parkinson White Syndrome, treated with catheter ablation 11 years ago for the WPW and they also found another conductive pathway and it too was treated. I had 9 years of occasional symptoms of SVT until last September when I had an episode of persistent atrial flutter, adenosine didn’t revert it, I was placed on Sotalol and had another ablation which was deemed successful. Up until 2 weeks ago I was fine, however now I have been in atrial flutter for 14 days. I was again treated with adenosine unsuccessfully and have been put on sotalol, dabigatran and digoixin. Any advice for the future, I’m 28.

  7. beth

    on February 2, 2014 at 9:46 am

    Reply

    My heart was a wreck before taking coq10. This supplement keeps my heart in regular rhythm at all times. Highly recommend it!

  8. j

    on February 20, 2014 at 6:19 pm

    Reply

    good test

  9. Carol

    on February 20, 2014 at 11:59 pm

    Reply

    I give up. I was doing so good this past summer and didn’t have any episodes of A-fib for 2 and a half months. I was doing good this year until I had a colonoscopy Jan 3rd. Drinking all that Miralax and Gatorade did me in. I spiked a temp later in the evening the day of the procedure. My gastroenterologist said it was more than likely viral. I had A-fib the next two days and 6 more episodes that month. I am taking Tambacor that has been controlling the a fib pretty good. I’ve had 2 episodes this week.

  10. William Turon

    on February 22, 2014 at 7:36 pm

    Reply

    What is the normal heart range in resting time by age?
    How come some doctors can pick up a mumur others miss it completely?
    How does a heart murmur effect blood pressure readings?

  11. trish

    on February 26, 2014 at 2:02 am

    Reply

    I have PVC’s controlled with magnesium aspartate, and A-fib, which comes and goes. No coffee, chocolate, etc., and take all Dr. Sinatra’s recommendations. Much “softer” episodes and not as common. Stress
    can set me off, need to do meditation, Yoga or something of that nature and regular exercise.

  12. Rocky

    on March 22, 2014 at 9:16 am

    Reply

    I’ve had rhythm problems with my heart since I was in my 20s. I was thin and in good physical shape. The motrin I was taking aggravated it quite a bit. No one gave me a diagnosis for 24 years. Seriously. I was blown off more times than I can count. Fast forward to now, I have a good cardiologist, and what’s the closest ‘fit’ is AFib. I have had an inferior myocardial infarction in my mid 30s and didn’t receive any treatment. (long story).
    I was born this way. I didn’t develop this over time. Its because my mom almost miscarried me between 6 and 8 weeks gestation, her doctor managed to stabilize her. I don’t see anything in this test that reveals that sometimes the source is a birth defect.

  13. Rocky

    on March 22, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Reply

    Is Tambacor a beta blocker or a calcium channel blocker?

  14. Rocky

    on March 22, 2014 at 9:28 am

    Reply

    I know exactly how you feel, I was 27 when I started to have tachacardia, pvc, pac, and other nasty symptoms. Don’t give up. You sound like you have a good doctor. Its hard to come to terms with a heart problem when you are only in your 20s. Stay on top of it. Often times doctors don’t like to do surgery unless you are in a very serious state. This is because there is a huge risk from surgery. So they try meds first, surgery is a last resort. Like me, you are unfortunately stuck with this problem. Another poster mentioned coq10, which is a coenzyme supplement, and that poster hasn’t had problems since. I’ll be trying it as soon as I buy it. Maybe it would help you.

  15. Rocky

    on March 23, 2014 at 1:08 am

    Reply

    My response to Gatorade is positive. This leaves me wondering what I’m leaving out. Maybe electrolytes will help me, and I like gatorade.

  16. Rocky

    on March 23, 2014 at 1:11 am

    Reply

    I will be trying the coenzyme, I want to take as few meds as possible. I know it worked for a friend for a long time, maybe it would help me.

  17. missy

    on March 29, 2014 at 7:25 pm

    Reply

    How much coQ? I take 3grams pulse still slow

  18. richod tansey

    on April 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Reply

    I find it a realy disgusting how mans 40 million year instinck GREED is behind most of all his decission’s,You never tell what arterial plaque really is.To the point of pancreatic cancer, high blood presure ,by pass’s kindny ,heart, disease etc ceolation D.R.Beard 1895, .DR. Shelly 1925,the Navy 1947, the A.M.A. 1950,F.D.A.last year,I catch things like P.A.D. hardening of the arteries,pancreatic prevention had it since 2011 dated in seeking alpha, I know pancreatic protical,and adult on set diabete’s which is it’s second,and the d.r. paid not to use it. Our tecknolidgy as well as our medical prof. is a crme ,the W.H.O. and Europe has told use for year’s has turned it’s back for monitory gain.Man is not intelagence with instink,rather he is a Instick.

  19. vanaja

    on April 26, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    Reply

    very simple and good meterials. and hhelpfull for all

  20. Viktor Mensik

    on April 30, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Reply

    I disagree with your evaluation of my answer: If you have occasional bouts of A fib you do not need medication for A fib but you should be on blood thinners, I am on Pradaxa. I learned the hard way, I got a serious ischemic stroke caused by blood clot created in my heart. Then I went on Pradaxa.

  21. kara

    on May 4, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    Reply

    had an ICD placed nearly 8 years ago, had been taking a diuretic for about 2 months and as a result my electrolytes were critically low. Instead
    of seeing it for what it was I get an ICD anyway because of that one v-fib episode. Now it’s time to change the battery for the first time. I never wanted it in the first place-should I let it go? I do have MVP and I have had runs of pvc’s recorded.

  22. kara

    on May 4, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    Reply

    how much do you take?

  23. ROBERT

    on May 9, 2014 at 8:54 pm

    Reply

    No thanks. No commit

  24. Patricia Mary

    on May 15, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    Reply

    I have just had ablation for AFib – am taking most of Dr Sinatra’s wonderful supplements as well as Nattokinase. I am super reactive and sensitive to drugs chemicals and many things. I have been put on Zeralto having had bad reactions to Pradaxa. I am getting the same unpleasant weak dizzy disoriented run down reactions. I cannot continue like this and wondered if it would be safe to go back on the Natto and if so how much – I was taking 1 2Xday. I am also on Diltiazem 60 mg SR over 12 hrs – could not handle anything stronger. I have to take both these meds for a few months to see if my AFib has settled down. Please help. I live in the Cayman Islands so am not subject to US law. Used alternative treatments for cancer and still do.

  25. Karin Larka

    on May 18, 2014 at 1:13 am

    Reply

    How much Co-Q10 did you use?

  26. pedro

    on May 22, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Reply

    no idea what’s wrong but irregular hearbeat

  27. Gene Read

    on July 24, 2014 at 4:41 am

    Reply

    I was overrun on a treadmill test (12 minutes). I have had a mitral valve problem most of my life. After doing some research I am surprised that they would run me this long considering I have a mitral valve problem. My cardiologist feels that as a result of the test I have stretched mitral valve cords and that I am going to have to have open heart surgery. Is there any way that I can strengthen my mitral valve cords and possibly avoid open heart surgery?

  28. Chuck Saari

    on August 4, 2014 at 2:02 am

    Reply

    Interesting test

  29. Gina Holmes

    on September 23, 2014 at 12:40 am

    Reply

    Is Coenzyne Q10 good for a Prolong QT Wave problem?

  30. karen

    on November 9, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    Reply

    I had A-fib for several years off & on until I took magnesium. My hypertension dugs mugged them. Most drugs rob the body of essential minerals. I bought Suzy Cohen’s book “Drug Muggers” She was a pharmacist for 25 years.

  31. sher

    on December 12, 2014 at 11:31 am

    Reply

    Have a look at, Heart Rate Variability. http://www.sheridixon.com

    Dr Michael Kuchera. MD Cardiologist. This is supplemental treatment.
    A Non Invasive Treatment in the United Kingdom.

  32. Simone Mauclaire

    on February 21, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Reply

    We use hawthorn and supplements and had goog result but now my husabad suffers from alternation of bradicardiya and heart beats around 70-90 and also enormous variations in blood pressure 100-140 or event 90-150 and more.

  33. Simone Mauclaire

    on February 21, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    Reply

    No comments

  34. David Triantos

    on April 10, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Reply

    For statement 9, I incorrectly answered False because
    my doctor has me on Pradaxa.

  35. David Triantos

    on April 10, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    Reply

    For statement 9, I incorrectly answered False
    because my doctor has me on Pradaxa.

  36. David Triantos

    on April 10, 2015 at 8:19 pm

    Reply

    For statement 9, I incodrrectly answered False
    because my doctor has me on Pradaxa.

  37. David Triantos

    on April 10, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    Reply

    For statement 9, I incorrectly answered False
    because my doctor has me on Pradaxa.

  38. Shirley S McClelland

    on May 7, 2015 at 5:57 pm

    Reply

    In Sept 1, 2014 I was diagnosed with Paroxysmal Atrial Fib. I was immediately put on Adenosine,
    Sotolal and finally had to change doctors, The medicines were slowly killing me.
    I am now on Diltiazem and Warfarin (am now in the adjusting stage on it) I also am a strong follower of Dr Sinatra and take almost all of his heart recommendations. Was doing fine at 84 yrs until the med drs got in the act. I am almost at my wits end. If we can’t get the Warfarin stabilized I don’t know where to turn. Sure wish for my previous way of enjoying life so much!! — I was on herbal and good supplements then, NO Prescriptions drugs!
    Thank you, Shirley Mac

  39. Mr Alfred Pick

    on May 28, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    Reply

    What about atrial flutter?

  40. Mr Alfred Pick

    on May 28, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    Reply

    What about atrial flutter? How is it different from a-fib?

  41. Gloria Thomas

    on May 28, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    Reply

    Very informative

  42. Gloria Thomas

    on May 28, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    Reply

    Very informative

  43. Gloria Thomas

    on May 28, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Reply

    Very informative

  44. Barbara

    on May 29, 2015 at 8:17 am

    Reply

    Hello doctor, I really enjoying your reading, I have palpations for many years, been to many doctors and had all tests done, and all fine, but I still get palpations,I put myself on magnesium and q10 and multivitiams , I get the palpations here and there, I am 52 years old and I am small frame weighing 41kg so not overweight, I am a very hiper person and always on the go, I do yoga and am very active person, what would you think is the reason for my palpations ? Many thanks for reading this! Glad I am not the only person in the world with this problem , regards Barbara x

  45. Elbert Yaw

    on June 5, 2015 at 2:38 am

    Reply

    NA

  46. Paula Letson

    on June 12, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    Reply

    what about colonoscopies can a person find out if they have cancer their
    by other tests like your fluid and cell and blood work?

  47. Daizy

    on September 18, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    Reply

    which Face Book support are you referring to, would like to Join.
    [quote]Helen,
    My arrythmias began in ernest when I was given Metoprolol in the hospital. And that was with just 1 mg/day! I have improved since dropping this medication. There are others who have documented the same experience on the support page of FaceBook. I have low blood pressure and this med is contraindicated for me. Don’t understand why it was prescribed in the first place.
    Good luck in finding the right formula for your condition, and even more the right doc![/quote]

  48. Marge

    on September 21, 2015 at 11:08 am

    Reply

    What I have found through muscle testing is people that have AFib need magnesium and sometimes potassium or both, Magnesium regulates potassium. However, blood test will not always show a deficiency because the majority of magnesium resides inside the cell not outside. It takes a while to build the up the magnesium because the stores are so low. Some people need 1,200 mg spaced out daily. Metals also interfere with the ion channels in the heart, so these need to be detoxed. Too much sugar, stress, digestion issues can also be found to be a cause among other reasons but magnesium is the biggest one.

  49. Marge

    on September 21, 2015 at 11:29 am

    Reply

    I find that using CoQ10, L Carnitine and Hawthorn Berries really helps.

  50. phyllis kaye

    on October 26, 2015 at 2:52 am

    Reply

    thank you for all your information. I will keep in touch with this web site.

  51. Bonnie

    on December 25, 2015 at 1:13 am

    Reply

    This is not related to any of the above …A=Fib…..however I have a very large hiatel hernic and while I do not experience any pain ….I find as time goes by ….I can only eat very small amounts of Food …..and am sure I do not drink enough of water….maybe 3-4 glasses/day …..However, I was told that an operation for a hiatel hernia is very dangerous and only done in an emergency …..but doc said I could possibly choke or end up not being able to breathe in the future …..I know there is no cure …….so what is your opinion??? Bonnie

  52. vitamins

    on February 4, 2016 at 7:29 pm

    Reply

    please recommend a vitamin that includes most of the vitamins and minerals for a healty heart my colesterol and ldl levels are high. i also have irrelugar ekg thanks

  53. vitamins

    on February 4, 2016 at 7:31 pm

    Reply

    have high colesterol and high ldl, my hdl is also high. my dr suggested statins. please advise vitamins for healty heart

  54. Roberta

    on September 11, 2016 at 11:58 am

    Reply

    I’ve had skipped beats over the past three years for isolated periods at a time. My cardiology tests (Zio, echocardiogram, etc.) reveal all is normal. Sometimes when I am near an electrical device in recent months, like an air conditioner or something with a strong enough vibrating mechanism, I experience a series of missed beats. Can you tell me what is going on and is this something I can and should treat? Thanks.

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