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Author Topic: In a cycle of calling Paramedics for my heart, please help!  (Read 399 times)

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Offline cornish_bird

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In a cycle of calling Paramedics for my heart, please help!
« on: March 18, 2014, 10:13:50 AM »
Hi everyone, so last night at 3am I ended up calling for medical help because I was absolutely convinced I was dying and having a heart attack :( I'm stuck in this cycle and it's driving me nuts!

Basically, I have paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, which isn't too bad. It just goes out of rhythm every now and then. Recently I've been laying in bed and getting heart flutters or feelings that it is missing a beat. As soon as it happens, I break out into a cold sweat, my throat gets tight and my palms start dripping. Last night the pain was so bad that it went into my neck, arms and chest so I called for help. Luckily, the paramedics were very, very cool about it all and were incredibly understanding and kept me in the ambulance for an hour or so to reassure me. I felt like such an idiot.

I keep telling myself "It's just panic, you're fine" but nothing makes it get any better. I try and calm myself down but it doesn't seem to work. I suffer with cardiophobia terribly, I think this is because of my pre-existing heart thing but I don't really know. It all started after I got a terrible panic attack when I was smoking pot (I would use it all day every day for a year) and I knew then that it was time to quit.

I hate wasting the medic's time but when I get in that zone I feel so desperately that I'm going to die and I need help.

How do I break this cycle? I also am meant to be having an MRI scan on my heart soon as the doc noticed something on my chest X-ray that looked a little odd. So I guess that's perpetuating my anxiety at the minute too..

Please, anyone, help me? I want to know that this will end, it's ruining my life and I'm getting incredibly depressed.

Thank you for reading

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Offline wegngis

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Re: In a cycle of calling Paramedics for my heart, please help!
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2014, 06:37:18 PM »
Greetings fellow afib sufferer.  I too have it, and I've gone out of rhythm twice over 19 years (the kind where it doesn't go back in a few seconds).  I even wore an event monitor for a month, 24/7, after the last episode.  I 'thought' I was going out of rhythm every couple of days, but came to find out that I was just getting harmless PVC's, probably from the stress of wearing the darn thing and being overly alert about it.  So, you might not be going out like you think you are.  But, if you are, it's not the end of the world.  Scary?  You bet.  I take a daily aspirin to help guard against any side-effects if I slip into afib again, that helps my mental outlook.  You should ask your doctor if that's appropriate for you, too.  (Gee, I sound like a commercial now  :winking0008: )

How do I keep from this ruining my life?  Well, I'm a cardio-phobe too, but not an afib-phobe (is that even a word??).  I just try to tell myself that the last time this happened, everything was alright.  And the next time, everything will be alright.  Lots of talking it out here helped too.  Most importantly, believing the diagnosis I'm getting from the doctors rather than reading worst case scenarios on the internet has helped too.  Dr. Google harms more than good, by far.
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MOST anxiety happens at the subconscious level.  JUST because you don't feel consciously anxious or had a day or two of calm doesn't mean your mind & body are relaxed.  It can take months of reduced anxiety before a body goes back to a more non-reactive state.  - AnxietyZone member Sixpack