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Heart flopping around in chest, fainting. Family history of atrial fibrillation, heart attack

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Practicing since : 1988
Answered : 43 Questions
Hi. I am a 34 year old female with a history of Crohn's Disease. Recently I started feeling like my heart was flopping around in my chest. This happens once a week or so. I also almost fainted earlier today (not exercising, etc). I don't have a history of heart problems. My father has atrial fibrillation, and my maternal grandfather died of a heart attack at 55.
Posted Tue, 24 Apr 2012 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Gopi A 10 hours later
Thanks for the query.

I have gone through your query. There is a possibility that the flopping around in the chest you are experiencing may be due to an abnormal heart rhythm.

1.Do these episodes start spontaneously or is it brought on by some activity?

2.How long do these episode last?

3.Was the fainting associated with this symptom or was it independent of this?

Please let me know the details and you will need to get an EKG done and also a 24 hr holter monitering done .Do try to get an EKG recording at the time of your sympton as that will help us to get a definitive diagnosis.

I hope i have answered your query.I will be available for follow up.

Dr. A. Gopi
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Heart flopping around in chest, fainting. Family history of atrial fibrillation, heart attack 6 hours later
Thank you for your answer.

here are my answers to your questions.

1. They start spontaneously.
2. They last a minute or two each time.
3. The fainting was associated with an episode.

I will talk to my primary care doctor to get the testing done.

Regards, XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Gopi A 17 hours later

With the history there is a definite probability that it may be a Cardiac arrhythmia. The next step would be to confirm the diagnosis for which you need to do the tests advised. If we are able to come to a conclusion with that you will be started on treatment. Sometimes if the initial tests come out negative you might be advised more advanced tests or at times your physician may give you empirical treatment based on your symptoms.

Dr. A. Gopi
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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