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Arrhythmia and Acid Reflux

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  • Arrhythmia and Acid Reflux

    For about a month now I have had frequent PVC's and PAC's. I'm fairly certain they are related to my digestion. In the past, any time I'd eat too much, or get an upset stomach I would get a bit tachy and have PVC/PAC's. My heart has always been sensitive to arrhythmias and I do get them from time to time. The last few months I've begun to wonder if I'm now having acid reflux issues. Lots of burping, uncomfortableness in my stomach, and it may sound strange but that kind of feeling you get in your stomach when you feel anxious. I've noticed that I'm feeling this way at the time the PAC's (or whatever) are occurring. I've looked up "Arrhythmia and GERD/acid reflux" and many people report that they do get arrhythmia when their GERD is acting up, but say that doctors are hesitant to say there is a connection. I'm almost certain it's a connection with me and was wondering if anyone else has this experience.

    I know - I plan on going to see my PCP if it continues. But I'm waiting for a week or so. My mentally disabled brother has been here for a visit and he takes a lot of attention because of his OCD and that's really stressful. The last month or so has also been very hectic. Next week should be normal - so I'm going to see if it settles down before I go in.

  • #2
    I know that post op they had me on prilosec otc. Maybe you could pick some up and just see if it makes a difference. Couldn't hurt i imagine.
    Ryan W.
    Davinci Robotic Mitral Valve Repair 6/24/2008
    St. Joseph's Hospital
    Dr. Douglas Murphy

    Comment


    • #3
      I bet the whole thing is related to you being more anxious and/or slightly more stressed the last month or so.
      My Mom and I have always had stress go right to our stomachs.
      Once your brother's visit is over, don't be shy to spend some time on yourself for a few days. You deserve it :-)
      BAV-Aortic Stenosis...AVR Oct 11, 2005 / St.Jude Regent mechanical 21mm
      INR Home testing since 2007 with Coaguchek XS...Self-Dosing

      "Caution: I may have been in contact with Nuts"

      Comment


      • #4
        I have the same theory about my palpitations. See, there's the vagus nerve right there in the stomach's spincter that runs along the esopghagus. If that thing is stimulated it can spark a plethora of symptoms that definitely effect the heart.

        When I started to be aware of what foods caused my heart burn the palpitations slowly diminished. That's not to say I still don't get them for what seems like no reason.

        In the living room.

        [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

        [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

        [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

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        • #5
          I was also going to mention the vagus nerve. By the way, AaronJ, I love all the great diagrams you insert into your posts!!!
          Mitral valve repair & maze procedure - October 20, 2005 - Montreal Heart Institute
          A-Fib - August 2005
          Endocarditis - 2004

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Adrienne View Post
            I was also going to mention the vagus nerve. By the way, AaronJ, I love all the great diagrams you insert into your posts!!!
            Thanks Adrienne. I'm just trying to share knowledge in the most effective way. Sometimes I might be completely wrong when I post something, but I at least try to support it with examples/exhibits/citations. I'm also used to posting on a very notorious imageboard where posting images is just what people do.

            As far as the reflux thing, I have confirmed mild esophageal erosion. You can see it in this pic. I'm almost positive the green marks the stomach sphincter where the esophagus meets the stomach. The other pictures I have of my colonoscopy/EGD scope are not PG 13. Don't click the pic if you're squeamish.

            Click image for larger version

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            In the living room.

            [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

            [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

            [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

            Comment


            • #7
              In my arrhythmia experiences, 2 out of three of them I had substernal
              pain,(right in the upper pit of my stomach) that came and went immediately. The pain was in the mod-severe range and only lasted about 5-6 seconds.
              I had no reflux with it and had not been eating. I have been curious as to
              which comes first; is it the arrhythmia causing the reflux(or pain) , or is
              the eating and or reflux triggerring the arrhythmia(?) It could be that it
              was the vagal nerve(as Aaron said) being affected by the onset of the arrhythmia which lastly causes the reflux. But that still doesnt explain why
              this is occurring when you eat a meal.
              Also,from what I remember doesn't the vagus nerve cause a parasympathetic
              reaction, or do I have that backwards:confused:
              Karlynn, I hope this goes away soon, or you find an easy
              solution, my best--Dina
              Tricuspid Valve Replacement(Bovine)2/4/08
              A.Flutter x 3,with 2 ablations & cardioversion 2007
              "A little learning is a dangerous thing..."-by Alexander Pope

              Comment


              • #8
                I have never noticed arrhythmias with acid reflux. All of the sudden everyone has acid reflux, including me. Good luck.
                Deb
                Coincidence is Gods way of remaining anonymous.
                AVR 7-6-07 Bovine Pericardial Valve. Akron City Hospital Ablation 6/08, Akron City Hospital

                Comment


                • #9
                  Karlynn,
                  It sounds a lot like what happened to me for several months earlier this year.
                  The difference is I was being treated for acid reflux for about two and a half years using Nexium. After going thru every test known to man (including some I never even heard of) I stopped taking the Nexium after doing a lot of research. Surprise. My gas and bloating went away and so did all those skipped beats.
                  I hope you get some answers because I'm well aware how uncomfortable it can be.
                  The only thing I would caution you about is if a doctor put you on something like Nexium, watch your INR.
                  Don't get me wrong, the Nexium did cure my problem with GERD, but Astra Zeneca recommends taking it for 4-8 weeks, not years.

                  Rich
                  Rich
                  AVR 7-29-96
                  St. Jude Mechanical
                  Wm. Beaumont Hospital
                  Royal Oak,Mi.
                  Dr. Paul Clancy

                  "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away"
                  Geo. Carlin

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                  • #10
                    Karlynn,
                    My brother had a mitral valve replacement in Sept '06. He had a bout of a-fib soon after his surgery. Time went by and he was fine then he went through another bout with a-fid. He has a physical job and he mentioned to me he was not eating breakfast and lunch because his stomach felt really full and uncomfortable. I was surprised because I didn't associate stomach issues with a-fib. This full uncomfortable sensation went away when he got his a-fib resolved.
                    Mitral Valve Prolapse/Regurgitation
                    MV Repair, Port Access, 02/21/07 by Dr William Ryan, Presby Hosp, Dallas

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Every time I got AF in the past, I would feel totally nauseous and also feel like there was wind trapped in my chest or something (if that makes sense) that caused a sharp pain, so I would take Enos or Quick Eze etc to try and make me burp....
                      Actually, I couldn't stand the thought of food when I was in AF.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yep. Matter of fact, that's how my valve problem was discovered. Irregular heartbeats caused by GERD. Before my surgery, (and even now) I started taking 2 zantac a day. As long as I do this, no skipped beats, unless I get a stomach virus or something not controled by zantac. I asked my cardio about why. He said the heart often rests against the stomach, so when it's aggravated, it sometimes affects the heart.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Well, I'm heading to my PCP on Wednesday. I took Prilosec for 2 weeks (because that's what the OTC package says you do - it doesn't talk about long-term use) and after about 3 days on it my gas and reflux settled down and I stopped having the arrhythmias. My last dose was Saturday morning. We went out to eat with friends that night, I had a beer and a half, and too much to eat (my friends insisted we share a fried Twinkie - wish I hadn't!!!). I woke up about 3 Sunday with an upset stomach and....yes... arrhythmia (the usual PAC or PVC's). I thought maybe it would settle down again but it seems to have just aggravated the issues and now I seem to be back to square one - burping, slight burning, PVC/PAC's.

                          So I'm pretty sure my question is answered: the chicken (gastric issues) come before the egg (arrhythmia). Now we'll see what my PCP wants to do as far as management.

                          And an FYI for warfarin users - the Prilosec did not affect my INR.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Karlynn,

                            Did you try TUMS, or Rolaids, or Zantac, or any other Fast-Acting antacid to supplement the Prilosec?

                            GERD patients (and some Radiation Treatment survivors) are often on Prilosec (or Nexium) for YEARS (or Forever???) unless / until they get a Fundoplication (doesn't sound like FUN to me!...) where they do surgery to wrap the upper part of the stomach around the Lower Esophageal Sphincter. It was a popular recommendation several years ago. Haven't heard much about it lately.

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                            • #15
                              I'm thinking it could have been the beer that started this. My SO has acid reflux (but no arrhythmia) and beer plus the meds don't mix.
                              Laughter is the Best Medicine
                              MVR March 30/07 Carbomedics Valve - Said and done in 5 days in Canada

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