So, something odd has been going on with my heart lately. Every time I have a nap, which is pretty often these days, I wake up with a crazy racing heart. I’ve a heart rate monitor app on my phone, so I’m pretty in tune with my heart rate. My heart seems to beat a bit faster than average, usually the slowest it ever is is 75bpm (beats per minute), with ‘normal’ being 60-100. My ‘sitting up resting’ is about 85. If I go up a flight of stairs it spikes to 120. And after 10 mins of standing up, it can reach 130, which may be indicative of POTS.
But this is different. It ONLY happens during daytime naps. And my heart rate reaches over 200bpm. And usually falls back down to the mid-70s in less than a minute. My doctor thinks maybe my heart is beating fast in between times, without me noticing, and making me tired, hence the increased need for naps. That’s certainly possible. I’m on a waiting list for a Holter monitor, to see what’s going on. But I could be waiting a long time. Plus the monitor will only pick up an ‘event’ if it happens within the 24 hours I’ll be wearing it for. So, I must make sure to take a nap that day.
She also said that if my heart rate doesn’t fall back down to 130 within an hour, I’m to rush straight to the ER. But with a record number of ER patients on hospital trolleys, including right now my 87 year old mother-in-law, I’d rather not.
My best guess for what’s going on is that it’s Supraventricular tachycardia. Which is only fatal in the rarest of cases. Mainly it’s more of a nuisance than anything else. I get chest pains and dizziness, but nothing I can’t get used to! Plus I’m a bit more tired than usual.
So, that explains why my blog posts are getting further apart!
And here, for your perusal, is a screenshot of the second ever ‘episode’ I had, which I took to show my doctor. I am in the habit of checking my HR before I go to sleep and when I wake up. My heart rate was fine before the nap, around 9.30 am. And back to normal one minute after the ‘episode’. But look at the number at 10.33 am!
[ image of a screenshot from a heart rate measuring app on my iPhone called Argus. Various heart rates are shown in red, with their corresponding dates and times in black. The relevant measurements are from December 17th, 2013. At 9.28, the heart rate is 76bpm. At 10.33 it shows a heart rate of 208 bpm. By 10.34 it has fallen back down to 79 bpm. ]