Another Possible Chronic Condition – SVT

I saw my neurologist yesterday as a follow up for my migraines.  Since I’m having another lumbar puncture next week, she decided to wait on adjusting my medication.

She asked me if I’ve fainted recently, and I told her about my near fainting episodes last week.  Sometimes I’ll have a rapid heart beat for no reason.  You may recall my post about Halloween night last year, “Guess What I did Last Night”.  (It about a trip I took to the ER because of my rapid heart rate.)  Last week I had two of those episodes, however, with these I nearly passed out both times.  That hasn’t happened before, and I don’t normally have them so close together.  One time I was lying in bed reading when it started, when I was at the ER they told me to put cold water on my wrist and/neck when this happened and it should help.  So I got Stuart to get me a wet wash cloth, but it wasn’t very cold, so I got up to run water on my wrist in the bathroom…and the world started to go dark.  I could feel me passing out and just laid down on the floor real fast.  Soon it past.  When I got back up and in the bed my heart beat had slowed down.  A couple of days later I was taking a bath, and it happened again.  I tried running water on my wrist and started feeling like I was going to pass out.  I ran cold water on my head, and it helped.  But now I realize just how dumb it was to stay in the bath when I was feeling faint.  Yeah, not bright, I know.

After hearing about these incidents, my doctor thinks I may have Supraventricular Taachycardia (SVT).  But it’s hard to definitely diagnose this because once get to the hospital the episode has often passed.  Next time it happens, I’m supposed to make sure and get a heartbeat count.  Stuart tried this last time, but he lost count because it was going so fast.  He thinks it was between 140 and 160 beets per minute.  I’ve tried counting it before and got about 200 beats per minute.

This is often not a serious condition and doesn’t need any treatment.  However, my doctor is concerned because of the faint feelings I’ve been having.  That could be dangerous, or signal that this is something a little more serious.

Right now, I just have to wait for another episode, and take good notes.

She also saw Stuart today because of his episode.  He will be going in for a EEG to check out his brain waves.  She wants to rule out a seizure.  That could make it hard for us to foster/adopt.  But I’m much more concerned about his health and safety.  She admitted that she sees many people who have strange episodes happen just once, and they can’t figure out what happened, and it never happens again.  She just wants to rule out some things.  She also mentioned that he could be having a certain type of migraine.  It would cover the symptoms he had, and you don’t have to have a bad headache to have a migraine.  We’ll be keeping an eye on him for a while too.  The EEG isn’t planned until late this month.


11 thoughts on “Another Possible Chronic Condition – SVT

  1. Hi! I found your post while I was browsing through WordPress. (I just started using the site.) I’ve had the same types of episodes happen to me several times over the past 2 years, one time it was at work – it was pretty embarrassing having to lay on the floor of my boss’s office. They put me on metoprolol to calm my resting heart rate which is fast to begin with and then goes crazy when these episodes happen. If you ever wanna chat about it let me know! I don’t know if I’ll be able to help much but sometimes it’s nice knowing you’re not the only one :).


    1. Thank you Danielle. I too have a pretty high resting heart rate. Often when I go to the doctor it’s about 100 bpm. When I first wake up in the morning it’s a bit slower. Around 75 bpm.
      Mine very rarely happens when I’m doing much of anything. Usually, I’m reading in bed. I may drop you a line sometime, hear more about your story.
      thanks again,


  2. Did your doctor mention wearing a Holter monitor? Strongly suggest seeing a cardiologist. I have the same thing happen from time to time and ended up seeing a really cute cardiologist who had me wear a Holter monitor for 3 days. So I got to go back and see him. 🙂

    Anyway, I had to keep track of any times I intentionally got my heart rate up, like if I walked up some stairs or something startled me. I guess so they know it’s not my hear doing its own thing. Anyway, I forgot to note that one of the kids had woken up in the middle of the night crying which made me jump out of bed and run to their room. Needless to say, when he saw that on my read out he became very concerned. We had a good laugh about it when I realized what had happened.

    Anyway, of course my heart didn’t do it’s thing during the time I wore the monitor, but he did notice a couple of unusual times that my heartbeat became irregular and thought it was probably premature atrial contractions (PACs). People also get premature ventricular contractions (PVCs). He said my condition is benign, but to let him know if it gets worse. I have never felt like I was going to pass out, though, but it has gotten really scary almost to the point of going to the ER.

    Hopefully, all will check out for Stuart and you. At least the doctor is taking what happened to him seriously enough to run a few more tests.

    Hope you guys have a great 4th weekend!



    1. Angelea,
      I have worn a halter monitor for a few days before. Of course, I didn’t have one of those spell when I had it on. My doctor also said I have PAC’s or PVC’s, I don’t know which. Mainly she said that I get a premature heartbeat now and then. She said that many people have them and don’t notice it, but I do. I wish I had the thing on during an episode. It’s not the same as the little flutter I feel now and then.

      Hope you are enjoying the holiday weekend.


  3. When a med I was taking increased my resting and moving heart rate (but not always my blood pressure), my doctor had me get a blood pressure monitor that also did heart rate. I think you can get small devices you put on your wrist, too, that may just show heart rate. That way, you could get an “instant” reading without trying to count yourself.
    I haven’t been to a cardiologist; the ultrasound of my heart showed nothing alarming, and the deviation was probably caused by the increased heart rate. Also, my the shape of sterum and rib cage did make it more difficult to her to get a good reading. The noises my heart made were amazing: like the sound track to a sci fi movie!. So, I started taking a small dose of a beta blocker to slow down the rate.

    As I am prone to panic attacks which increase my heart rate, I didn’t at first realize that rather than a panic/anxiety attack, I had a speeded up heart rate. I do get the woozies, and have fainted in the past, but not due to a rapid increase in heart rate. That must be scary!

    I hope the doctor(s) can pinpoint what may have caused Stuart’s episode. They are learning alot more about migraines; not all fit the classic pattern. A neurologist 7 years ago diagnosed that ALL my headaches, including ones I called cranium crushers but could still function, were forms of migraines. I know get about 3 varities of them; each requiring analization to see which migraine med I should take. For almost 25 years I had migraines with no medication (just over the counter stuff); now if I catch it in time with the right med, I can stop it. Epilepsy is more managable now that ever. There is even an operation that can help; the fellow across the road had spent most of his first 20 years in hospital. A couple of years ago, he underwent surgery, and he has blosoomed. He takes little or no meds; is now a town councillor and very active in his church. So I hope that’s what’s up with Stuart. But should it be migraines or epilepsy, there are various options. And, with a doctor’s letter, the adoption issues migth still be viable.

    And I hope your heart issues get resolved the best way possible.


  4. oops, the comment should read “So I hope that nothing is up with Stuart.” I didn’t mean to imply that I hoped he had a serious health issue, Just the opposite;that some reason may be found for what happened and it is an easily treatable condition. My mind and fingers don’t always connect. My apologies for the misstatement!


    1. : ) Thank you Phylor, I understood, really I did. No apologies necessary.

      I told my doctor that it feels the same as when I take Imitrex. (a migraine med), and she understood exactly what I meant. That med can make your heart fly.
      I haven’t been to a cardiologist, my GP had me wear a halter monitor for a few days, but I didn’t have an episode while wearing it.
      Hopefully, we’ll figure it out soon.

      Thank you for all the well wishes.


  5. lisa

    I had to stop taking Imitrex as it caused an episode of SVT, my heart was at 230bpm for over an hour- I almost passed out quite a few times but fought it because I was so scared and did not know what was happening. I loved Imitrex but since then have also stopped caffeine and I very rarely get migraines now. I also had to wear a holter and king of hearts monitor along with EKG’s and echocardiograms and they found nothing we assume it was the Imitrex that triggered it.


    1. I had the same reaction to Imitrex. That’s the first time I remember feeling that way. But I haven’t taken it in years.
      now it’s just random when it happens. Hasn’t happened lately…but I’m sure it will again. just a part of me I think.
      I don’t do much caffeine if any. My migraines have been much worse over the past month.
      glad you figured yours out and things are better.


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