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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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My heart rate increases then stops suddenly. Should I get this checked ?

My heart rate increases then stops suddenly. Should I get this checked? I m not sure if I m imaging this or if it s just stress from school that s causing it. My heart beat tends to increase suddenly, it begins to race as I m just standing or sitting down. Suddenly, it almost seems to totally stop for a few seconds, then it goes back to normal. I get this tight feeling in my chest and choking feeling in my throat as it happens. The whole episode takes about 3-6 seconds. In the last month, I ve had these episodes about 5 to 6 times. Like I said, I could be either standing around (not doing any physical activity) and I ve even had one in the shower. I m not sure what it could be. I ve looked up some symptoms and apparently it could be tachycardia but like I mentioned here, I don t know if it s just stress related (school and work) or a serious problem. I m 19 years old. I weigh 125lbs. I m 5 7 . Thank you for any information.
Mon, 14 Dec 2009
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I'd definitely get it checked. From my own experiences I'd guess it's simple anxiety or stress. My blood pressure and heart rate will periodically shoot to levels where the heart rate is visible in the veins of my wrist when I'm under a lot of stress; they don't have to put their fingers on it to count, they can see it. My suggestion would be to first talk to your school's quack shack and ask them about it. They may be able to give you an EKG there, they may refer you out. If they refer you out, your school may have a medical health insurance program that you can enroll in that may cover you. Otherwise, I look at it this way, better safe than sorry, and they've got to keep you alive if they want you to pay the bill. A simple EKG isn't that bad. You sit there with your shirt off for a few minutes, a couple of electrodes on your chest that run to a laptop computer and they check your heart function. If you want, zap an e-mail to me. I'm about to have dinner with my brother, leaving 3 pm CDT, and I'll see if he knows a good internist in your area. D
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