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Sleep apnea & tachycardia (fast heart beat)

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I have had athsma (bronchial with allergies) since I was a child. About two years ago I started to have palpitations, I can be sat quietly reading a book and my pulse rate will go from 70 to 120 for no apparent reason. Went to dr and had blood test, urine test, over active thyroid test, cardiogram+ ecogram. All normal except for slightly high blood pressure ( average 130 over 85 not bad for 61 yrs) dr sent me to a cardiologist, lots of questions after which he said he thought I had sleep apnea. Sent me for sleep analysis which came back "severe apnea". Went on cpap, no effect in fact using the machine makes me worse as I wake up with breathing problems. Feel worst first thing in the morning, very weak , no energy and feel confused. Gets better as the day goes by but not much. I am not overweight, stopped smoking drink very little and eat healthy food. I dont have any money worries allthough I did have the stress of a divorce but that was a while ago. Other things I suffer from are GERD and a hiatal hernia. Can anyone point me in the right direction.


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replied January 18th, 2007
General Q&A Answer A2134
According to the symptoms you describe (palpitations and heart rate suddenly going from 70 to 120) you probably experienced some type of paroxysmal tachycardia. To prove the existence of paroxysmal tachycardia, people are required to wear a holter apparatus for 24 hours to monitor the heart rhythm. Sleep apnea can cause tachycardia but in your case, you experienced an increase in heart rate while you were reading a book. If sleep apnea continues over a long period of time, it can cause permanent heart damage. Paroxysmal tachycardia could be the first sign of heart damage. You may consult an ENT-specialist to try to identify the reason and possible treatment for sleep apnea. You may also consult a cardiologist about wearing the holter apparatus to test and monitor the heart.
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