Thursday, 15 June 2017

Off the Beat

Arrhythmia. It's very unpleasant, as anyone who suffers from it will tell you. It suddenly started for me back on my 60th birthday.... a thumping irregular heart, tachycardia..... what a lovely birthday present.

I went to my office the next day as usual, and as I'm a person who prefers to climb up the stairs to the 5th floor rather then use the elevator, that's what I did. Or at least I tried. By the second floor I was gasping for breath and hanging on to the handrail. An ultra fast heartbeat of 200 beats per minute caused me to collapse with dizzyness and difficulty breathing. The company nurse was called, and off I went in a taxi to the Emergency Department of the nearest hospital.

That was a few years ago. Since then, the arrhythmia was managed successfully, first with medication and then, when it became constant 24/7 making my life a misery, with synchronised eletro-cardiversions on three occasions and a catheter ablation.



No abnormal heartbeat for 3-1/2 years.... yippee! It's fixed! But then three weeks ago, I felt the familiar vibrations of a fast irregular heartbeat. It didn't last long but managed to land me unexpectedly on the ground a couple of times and has since got a lot worse, so last week another trip to Emergency was necessary.

This time the doctor tried chemical cardioversion, which is an IV drip with anti-arrhythmia medication, but it didn't really work, so the decision was made to put me to sleep, attach the electrodes and run 200joules of electricity through my body for cardioversion number 4. And it was successful, and I'm back in sinus rhythm! Fingers crossed that it stays that way.

Anyone out there in blogland suffering from the same problem?
The worst part of this whole process is peeling those sticky ECG and electrode pads off my tender skin.

Here's a fascinating computer animation of various types of arrhythmias....
http://watchlearnlive.heart.org/CVML_Player.php?moduleSelect=arrhyt

10 comments:

Anvilcloud said...

This must be very darn scary. All the best.

Marie Smith said...

It mustbe frightening! Gladyou are ticking to the right beat now!

Lowell said...

I'm so sorry you have had to go through all this. I've had my own problems but not heart-related so far. Best wishes and I'm certainly with you in hoping this last medical excursion has taken care of the problem.

Tomoko said...

I have not had arrhythmia, but I can not say it never happen to me in my age.
It must be scary. Glad your heartbeat is settling now.
Have a good weekend.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

Goodness Shammi it can't be fun when it takes you by surprise like that! I really hope it's under control now. I'm going to check the link when I get onto my other computer. So far I've been lucky, but honestly as we of a certain age know, you can never tell what's around the corner health wise!

photowannabe said...

Oh wow, how scary. Let's hope and pray this last treatment will be the last you need.
I'm so thankful for modern technology and the ability to fix what would have been a not so good outcome years ago.
Keep on keeping on Shammy.

Revrunner said...

Gosh, no! I trust this last trick solves the problem.

Angela said...

This last Feb. I started on one Hydrochlorothiazide for blood pressure and I woke up one night with my heart beating too fast. The doctor added metoprolol and it has been fine so far. I went to emergency room having weird feelings, couldn't breath well, and other symptoms and it was the very high BP.

sonia a. mascaro said...

Dear Shammi, I'm so sorry to hear that and that you had to go through this health problem. I am glad that your heartbeat is well now.
Wishing all the best to you my friend.
Have a nice weekend!
Love and Hugs.














































stardust said...

Sorry to hear about your health problem. Seen from that tough driving to and from Arizona or other activities of yours, you didn’t look having heart problem. It must be frightening to have such experiences. As we age, some kinds of aches and pains are unavoidable and we have to get along with them by self-control, medication or procedures when necessary. Wish you keeping good beat, I keep my fingers crossed.

Yoko