Just wondering how many PVCs are too many? 

Mine have trebled recently from approx 2k one month to 6k the next  month. Not sure if this is a cumulative figure. 







by AgentX86 - 2023-01-09 16:28:56

I've read (and have been told) that it's not considered dangerous until PVCs account for 30% of the heartbeats. That's 775,000 per month. My pacemaker can't even be set to record less than five in a row.

PVCs can have some really unpleasant symptoms but they're rarely dangerous. I got rod of mine by taking a significant amount of magnesium and makign sure I drink enough water.  I had some today after exercise but they weren't all that objectionable.


by Penguin - 2023-01-09 17:06:59

Thank you for the response AgentX86. 

Mine are much less than 30% of total heartbeats.  

Do you know what symptoms they can cause?  

Best Wishes



by AgentX86 - 2023-01-09 23:38:18

The obvious symptoms are "skipped" beats.  They aren't really skipped but as the name suggests, one is premature.  The heart hasn't completely filled with blood, so it's a weak pulse.  The reason the percentage has to be so high is that, while the beat is incomplete, there are many around it that are just fine.  A high percentage indicates that there may not be enough blood being pumped.

Other symptoms are quite like other arrhythmias, light headed, SOB, perhaps chest pain, and palpatations (above). 

Everyone has PVCs from time to time.  Most with "normal" hearts just pass may notice them but then ignore them as a hiccup, then move on.  We're hyper-sensitive to anything our heart does so PVCs stick out. 

The number I gave is ridiculous but was meant to point out that a few thousand isn't anything to worry about, particularly if your cardiologist/EP isn't.

Premature Ventricular Complexes

by Gemita - 2023-01-10 02:03:34

Penguin following on from AgentX86's comments, I always find premature ventricular beats more uncomfortable than premature atrial beats because the former are of ventricle origin, the main pumping chambers of our heart and will therefore likely cause more in the way of symptoms.  I can remember before pacemaker I had them occurring almost continuously for a couple of days and I became really symptomatic and unstable particularly on lying down at night. Actually I thought I was on my way out my symptoms were so severe!

By the way, one of my old surface ECGs when my arrhythmias first started was read by my Cardiologist and he confirmed that machines can get the diagnosis wrong.  The ECG machine diagnosis stated frequent premature ventricular complexes which my cardiologist read as frequent premature atrial complexes with aberrant conduction (right bundle branch block pattern).  I found this really concerning, which is why you should always always get your ECGs read and confirmed by an experienced doctor.  I presume your data comes from a reliable source (intracardiac electrogram or surface ECG), but still ask for these to be checked again by an experienced doctor.

How many PVCs are too many?  They will be too many when they cause difficult symptoms for you would be my answer.  Some of us tolerate PACs and PVCs extremely well.  I don’t especially if they are prolonged.  Also a run of PVCs may become non sustained VT which can happen.  This is when three or more consecutive PVCs occur at a rate of 100 bpm or more, so this could also increase the chances of getting worsening symptoms during PVC episodes.  I would ask for Zio Patch or Holter monitoring for say a week to confirm full extent of the problem Penguin.  The more monitoring the better.  My pacemaker is set to vigorously ignore PACs and PVCs so I cannot tell you how many I get on a daily basis.  I will see if I can pull out my old Reveal Linq records I have on disk and let you know if anything is reported there about any PVC burden.

Causes:  have you checked your electrolytes recently or had a recent echo cardiogram to look for any structural problems (cardiomyopathy or leaky valves) and have they looked for CAD?  Check for thyroid problems too.  Speak to your GP about other checks?  If frequent PVCs are confirmed (based on difficult symptoms) I would ask for a few extra checks Penguin. 

Thank you Gemita & AgentX

by Penguin - 2023-01-10 07:00:28


Thank you re: symptoms.  That may be what I'm experiencing. 

I had PVCs listed on my previous PM and numbers were reasonably high but I didn't pay any attention to them as I didn't have any significant symptoms.  The only change (that I currently know about) is a new PM, it's capabilities and programming. 


Thank you too. I have no idea if the PVCs are consecutive or not.  This would be a  new 'change' if this is happening and currently I don't know. There's a number count for PVCs on the diagnostics page and I honed in on it because I know that PVCs can cause PMT.

Alerts for PVCs are turned off.  I don't know whether alerts can be turned on to highlight PVCs which occur in combination. Possibly.   I've never been informed about ventricular tachys before I had this PM or since for that matter and very much hope this isn't what is happening.  

Re: Causes - the suspects you mention have been looked into fairly recently (blood tests, echo, thyroid etc) with nothing reported. The exception is electrolytes. 

I've not heard of a Zio patch, but will google it to save asking you further questions. 

These are all questions worth asking. Thank you. 

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