Supraventricular Tachycardia - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 27 Old 07-18-2013, 02:33 AM Thread Starter
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Supraventricular Tachycardia

Hi guys,

Just felt like writing about what I am going through. Also wondering if there is anyone on here that's going through the same thing.

I'm 17, I have had SVT for 5.5 years.
SVT for me is:
It starts w/ a slight pain and tightness in my chest along with a skipped beat. The episode can be all the way up to 300bpm. I get dizzy, light headed, fainting is possible with worse attacks, and have extreme anxiety. The palpations are terrible and you can feel your heart beating on the chest walls and internal organs. I have to do a variety of maneuvers to kick it back to normal, or go get an adenosine injection at the ER.
I feel drained and extremely tired for the remainder of the day.

The episode with which I was taken to the hospital and diagnosed (3 years in) was 260 Beats per minute at school. This lasted for about 15 minutes.
I also suffer from A-Fib, irregular beats, and palpations.

Recently it has been very bad. I can barley ride and it's getting to the point where it is unbearable. It starts nearly every time I do anything physical.

The final straw was when I had an episode at my last two lessons.
I finally broke down and cried. I have wanted to do hunters/jumpers my whole life. And I now have an opportunity to start, and I cant even do 2-point for a lap around the arena w/o problems.

We are setting up and ablation surgery to remove the excess tissue that causes this.
Scared, but I need my horses and riding. (They are my life.)

I am willing to take a risk to accomplish a dream.

Anyone else with this condition that can share some tips? :)
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post #2 of 27 Old 07-18-2013, 02:54 AM Thread Starter
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I would love some tips on how to get rid of anxiety and fear too. Both of these can trigger an episode as well.
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post #3 of 27 Old 07-30-2013, 04:32 PM
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Considering your young age and how symptomatic you are, the ablation surgery is a must! Best and most likely scenario: it works, you're healed, you can do everything like everyone else. It sure is worth the risk. I have a friend a tad older than you (22) who just went through it, she's healed, pregnant and happy!

As of trigger, you probably know that any stimulant is a trigger: tea, coffee, chocolate, energy drinks, stress, fatigue, dehydration etc. So you must eat regularly, drink plenty and sleep enough. And I suppose someone checked you're thyroid function, right?

The feeling of palpitation IS scary, no shame in feeling anxiety. But you can learn to control it. I would suggest you try yoga, it could help with breathing, control and relaxation, which is useful all the time anyway.

Good luck!
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post #4 of 27 Old 07-30-2013, 05:17 PM
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Virginia
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I'm 18, almost 19 :)
I have anxiety, irregular heart beat, and palpatations.
Honestly when I can keep my anxiety under control it helps. Do something to relax you when you feel yourself getting anxious. It has been proven that petting something actually helps when you feel anxious! But i've had anxiety for many years....since like 3rd grade, so you soon figure out how make your body calm down and relax. Massaging the palm of my hand helps me too. :)
Also I don't drink energy drinks and rarely do I have any caffiene. I drink decaf coffee and stay away from sodas and sweets. I first found out I had my irregular beat from an energy drink..those things are bad for you!
If you ever need to talk feel free to PM me! :)

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post #5 of 27 Old 08-01-2013, 06:21 PM
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Get the ablation. I had mine back in the early 90's when they were first doing them. It took me from being disabled to living a normal life. My mother, my sister, my daughter, my cousin, and my husband have all had ablations for SVT. (My poor kid didn't have a chance with getting it on both sides.)

It is the best thing that you will ever do.
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post #6 of 27 Old 08-01-2013, 08:36 PM
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I wanted to add one more thing. They dope you totally out of your mind or even knock you out while they work on you. They only work through catheters so it is not open heart surgery. You will have very little pain, and you will be feeling great in a week.

If you are on beta blockers, it might be a good idea to get off of them for a week before the procedure. Ask your doctor if it is ok. The first time that they did mine, my medication made it impossible for them to find the spot. I got off of it for the second round.

You are not signing up for a lot of pain. It is much less painful than taking a really good spill off of a cantering horse.
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post #7 of 27 Old 08-01-2013, 09:01 PM
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I work in a heart cath / electrophysiology lab. Get the ablation ... I look forward to hearing about your experience and the subsequent loss of anxiety over it.
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post #8 of 27 Old 08-08-2013, 01:24 AM
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Hey Brenna Lee I too had exactly the same - SVT .

I am very surprised they have let you go on as long as they have with this. I had one of the first ablations done in NZ when I was 28 - I am now 49 and, (apart from a series of unrelated broken bones last year LOL) fit and healthy.
I had to have another ablation done about 5 years after the first as they think they just missed the pathway (as scar tissue heals it shrinks and exposed it again)- the symptoms had come back.
Now I do not take any drugs for anything, if my body wasn't still healing from the bone breaks I'd be out there running - one day soon I'll start again.
I kick boxed for years after my first ablation. It is, as Celeste says, absolutely amazing what they can do
Don't be scared, everyone at the hospital is so nice, just lie back and be spoilt for a while
Good luck and happy riding in the future.
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post #9 of 27 Old 08-08-2013, 01:52 AM
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I had an ablation done in 2007 for focal atrial tachycardia. My symptoms weren't as bad as yours sound (although any amount of running would trigger it nearly 100% of the time) I'd definitely recommend getting it done.

That being said, I'm still not quite "normal" now. I actually have the opposite problem now- I've had several episodes of bradycardia that led to fainting and despite lots and lots of testing the doctors haven't figured out the exact cause. I'm not sure if it's even related to my history of tachycardia or the ablation. For some reason Prilosec seems to keep those episodes at bay (even though acid reflux was ruled out and I was put on a couple other prescription acid reducers that did nothing). I can only assume that one of the side effects of Prilosec is beneficial to me. We definitely still have a lot to learn in the field of medicine!
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post #10 of 27 Old 08-08-2013, 02:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the wonderful responses!

I am sad to say that my cardiologist is making me try another form of beta blocker for 3 months. I only take it once a day, it works 1/2 the day, then I get symptomatic... I'm going to call and see if I can take it twice a day...

This was the last thing I wanted... I am 17, and on frickin pills so I can semi function.

I am still too scared to exercise even when on the medication...
I want to go to my jumping lessons, but I am too scared! :(

It makes me so sad, because I love jumping and running, and being able to exercise... ;(

Parents said I'd have to wait 2more years until they consider surgery again because a family doctor told them I could grow out of it... I feel so helpless.
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