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What causes thumps in chest, feeling of missed beats and dizziness?

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Pain Medicine & Palliative Care Specialist
Practicing since : 1983
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Hi there. Can you help me understand my heart sensations please? Had thumps in chest, feeling of missed beats for years. 6 years ago, 24 hour ECG Holter was no significant abnormalities and Echo showed mild Mitral Valve regurgitation. Now for the past 12 months I have extremely vigorous and disturbing feelings that seem to be coming from my heart. It feels like something wobbling hard or shaking and is accompanied by pauses in my heart beats. Less frequently, I also have unnaturally fast burst of beats for a few seconds that make me feel faint and dizzy then all resumes back to normal. What could this be? Many thanks
Posted Thu, 6 Feb 2014 in Heart Rate and Rhythm Disorders
Answered by Dr. Kerry Pottinger 32 minutes later
Brief Answer: Possible paroxysmal tachycardia. Detailed Answer: Hi, Thank you for using Healthcare Magic. These symptoms may be due to paroxysmal tachycardias. Although you had a normal 24 hour tape 6 years ago I suggest this needs to be repeated. The tape may have missed episodes of abnormal beats or you may have developed them since the tape was done. Discuss with your GP the possibility of referring you to a cardiologist. Treatment for these conditions include medication and sometimes ablation. I hope this is helpful. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Regards, Dr K A Pottinger, MBChB FRCA
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Follow-up: What causes thumps in chest, feeling of missed beats and dizziness? 25 minutes later
Thank you for your prompt reply. It is the strong spasming feeling that disturbs me most and provokes anxiety ((it takes my breath away!) I would like to know if this really vigorous shaking feeling/quivering in the chest would be consistent with the irregularities that my other symptoms might be indicative of. The feeling really stops me in my track! But never lasts longer than a few seconds. Thanks again
Answered by Dr. Kerry Pottinger 10 minutes later
Brief Answer: These symptoms could all be related to your heart. Detailed Answer: Hi, Thanks for the further information. Yes, this is what is at the forefront of my mind, your symptoms could all be due to heart irregularities. When the heart beats inappropriately fast it can cause a feeling of fluttering and anxiety and an unpleasant sensation in the chest and neck. Also, it may only last a few seconds as you describe. However, these conditions are usually very responsive to treatment. Regards, Dr K A Pottinger
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Follow-up: What causes thumps in chest, feeling of missed beats and dizziness? 16 minutes later
Thank you. In your opinion, could any of the following cause or contribute to/aggrevate the heart irregularities we are thinking of: 1) stress 2) a 1cm sliding hiatus hernia 3) stomach irritation (including mild acid reflux )lead to
Answered by Dr. Kerry Pottinger 8 minutes later
Brief Answer: Yes, stress may be a trigger. Detailed Answer: Hi, Stress including tiredness and emotional upset may trigger an episode but a hiatus hernia or acid reflux would not. Other triggers are excess caffeine, alcohol, smoking, some asthma medications and some cold remedies. It may be worth considering reducing any of these if they are relevant to you. However, I still recommend seeing your GP. Hope this helps you, Regards, Dr K A Pottinger
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Follow-up: What causes thumps in chest, feeling of missed beats and dizziness? 1 hour later
Last question, I promise. Does the fact that certain body positions and movements can bring on some of the symptoms (thump in chest, flutters) correlate with heart irregularities? For instance, sometimes when I lean forward, twist my upper body, reach for something with my left arm or lie flat, I experience symptoms. Movement of trapped wind near my chest also does and sometimes intimicy with my partner aggrevates it. I have been referred to cardiology and have an initial appointment in a few weeks. I'm hoping I experience symptoms during any tests they perform as this is the only way I will obtain conclusive answers. Thank you for your advice.
Answered by Dr. Kerry Pottinger 20 minutes later
Brief Answer: Unlikely to be triggered by position. Detailed Answer: Hi, Your body position is unlikely to trigger an episode but as the heart alters it relative position within the chest, you may become more aware of an episode. I am still convinced these symptoms are most likely due to an arrhythmia so I am pleased you will shortly see a cardiologist for a definitive diagnosis. I hope all goes well. Regards, Dr K A Pottinger
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