Breakdown at 130

I recently had a Pacemaker implanted and was told that I would be able to get back to my normal routine of running and biking after a 6 or 8 week break. When I came back and started running, all went well at first (1st month or so). After that I started having trouble running at all. When I got my heart rate to about 100, I'd start getting missed beats (about 1 in 3 was missing). So, obviously I couldn't keep running, so I'd start walking until my heart 'steadied out'. Then I'd repeat and have it happen all over again. The effect was, I couldn't run. Then I went back to my doctor for a PM check and I told them about it and they said that my PM was set for 120 bpm maximum and that the PM must be interfering with my heart at the higher rates. So.....they changed the upper limit to 150 and I tried to run again. The same thing happened as before except now the threshhold of skipped beats is at about 130 BPM now. Has anyone had ANY kind of situation similar to this? Thanks.


Breakdown at 130

by Vai - 2007-04-10 01:04:41

Is your PM a rate responsive unit? If it is, please check if it is turned on or off. Please check with the doc/tech what did the interrogation report say actually happened! It sounds like your rate response is turned on and its getting in the way of your natural rythmn. Just speculating.

My PM is set at 140 bpm and when I exercised and pushed heartrate to 115 bpm, I don't feel any miss beats like you have described. The tech told me that having the rate responsive feature turned off is easier to manage and it should stay "off" unless the patient really need it to be turned "on". I don't know if this applies to you.


by jlesher - 2007-04-28 09:04:51

Thanks for the tip. I don't know for sure what type it is, I think it's a rate responsive. My doctor told me that he might try letting my heart work on its' own at higher rates, but that he's concerned then that if I miss a few beats I might pass out. One thing I'm up against is my doctor doesn't seem to have many patients that want to exercise hard (run, bike, swim etc) so he doesn't have the experience to fall back on for people who do want to exercise. I've printed off your note and I'll take it to my next appointment to discuss. Thanks again!!

My experience

by rosep - 2007-05-04 12:05:04

Hi. I have had my pm for 8 weeks now and I went back to the gym for the first time this week. My pm is set at upper limit of 120bpm at moment. I had a "trial"on the tread mill and I was fine with steady walking but within a minute of increasing to running speed I has to stop as I was was very breathless.My pm had kicked in to drop my bpm to 75 very quickly. I repeated this for my own curiosity ,and then found I was ok with steady walking, then cycling, as long as I kept my bpm between 120-130.
At my six week check I was told my pm would be re-regulated for exercise at my next appointment in afew weeks, so I'm hoping a higher upper limit will let me get back to real exercise! Hope you,re running is improving


by jlesher - 2007-05-21 10:05:35

Thanks for the comments. I had my PM adjusted from 120 to 150 for the upper limit and I'm able to run a little faster and a little farther. Now, I'm hoping to get it adjusted even further (to the 170 range). There seems to be a little lag from what it's set at and where it starts to break down. WHen it was set at 120 I was starting to break down at about 100-110. Now that it's set at 150, I seem to start to 'break down' at about 140. Something in the calibration I suppose. Thanks for the comments.

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