I had my PM placed on Monday the 13th of March. Big surprise to me. Micra AV.
I'm 58 years old.
I have so many questions and looking for help.
1. When do the PVC's calm down?
2. Is it normal to be so emotional? Anger, crying, anxiety and fear?
3. Are there any online support meetings?
Thank you for the acceptance to this forum and grateful for any help. Feeling alone and scared!
I hope we can all help you to feel better soon
by Gemita - 2023-03-19 07:23:39
NewLife, welcome to the Pacemaker Club.
1. When do the PVCs calm down? There are potentially many different heart rhythm disturbances that may surface following a pacemaker implant and ectopics like PVCs (premature ventricular contractions) or PACs (premature atrial contractions) can be perfectly normal as we heal. It was for me and can last a few weeks to a few months, depending on the cause (like dehydration, implant trauma, electrolyte imbalances).
Our hearts may have been traumatised by fixation of our leads to heart tissue, or in your case, fixation of your leadless Micra device. Additionally it will take time for our hearts and for us to get used to pacing. This in itself may take up to several months, so we need to be patient.
Adjustments to pacemaker settings, allowing more time to heal after pacemaker implant, taking medication or reviewing medication, or improving lifestyle may all help to treat PVCs and calm the number of rhythm disturbances you might be experiencing.
Have you actually been told that you are having PVCs? Most of us don’t know what is going on at first, unless we had similar symptoms before our pacemaker implant?
2. Is it normal to be so emotional? Anger, crying, anxiety and fear? Yes it is an emotional journey we go through getting a pacemaker and accepting that our own hearts need support, although I was not angry or tearful. I just felt enormous relief that my doctors had finally listened to me after years struggling with low heart rates, pausing and intermittent syncope.
I did experience initial anxiety and concerns that my pacemaker might not work well enough to correct some of my symptoms and I did wonder whether I had made the best decision to get a pacemaker, but now after almost 5 years, I have my answer. My quality of life has improved immensely, so my decision to get a pacemaker was indeed the right one.
3. Online support meetings? We do have a Chat Room here, although I have to say that I haven’t used it, but you could invite members of your choice to chat there by sending them a private message first, giving time and dates when such a meeting could take place. To use Chat, when logged on, go to Members Only, Chat. However the chat room would be open to all members, so if you specifically wanted to communicate “personally and in private” you would need to send a member a private message.
I wish you well and please feel free to ask questions whenever you wish and we will all try to help you
In the same boat
by Davymac - 2023-03-19 11:26:12
I had a pacemaker fitted on 8/3/23 following a collapse at a sports event. Completely out of the blue. My head is all over the place but acknowledge it was necessary. My main concern at the minute is that I am still very sore from the CPR performed at the time. It's possible this can be quite long lasting. As this happened in UK I had very little information given to me at hospital. GP is a good first call as I found his advice very reassuring. Like most major life events it'll take time to adjust. Nice to have been given that time though.
by Persephone - 2023-03-19 11:34:40
Welcome, NewLife! From your description of your emotions, you've listed some of the stages of change - I believe next comes acceptance.
I walked in your shoes 5 yrs ago and found it really helpful to find something to distract from the emotions for a while - starting a project you've been putting off or similar. The benefits of gentle exercise and movement, and getting outside as possible cannot be overstated - they can be gamechangers.
I also sought therapy from a psychologist for the first time in my life - just a few sessions were very, very helpful.
You've got a cool device, I'm sure a lot of people here would be interested in knowing more about it, as it appears most members here have conventional devices.
Looking forward to hearing more about your progress going forward. Take care.
by Lavender - 2023-03-19 16:10:48
Newbies are joining all the time! It's astonishing how many pacemakers are placed every day! Everything you mention is normal!
I was very depressed after my surprise pacemaker. I felt broken and old. I was sad. I was scared. I was scared to be alone. It was traumatic! I didn't trust my body anymore.
Gradually over six months or so, through prayer, meditation, walks in nature and time to process it-my brain finally accepted that not only was I ok-I was better than before!
Read as much as you can here. You will see how you're part of a large growing community who understands. 💚💜
by Newlife58 - 2023-03-19 16:36:12
Thank you for the feedback.
It's all very scary. Yes, I do feel alone. Learning what I can and cannot do. No guidance. It's really just a wing & a praye4. Low to no energy. Walked today longer than yesterday and felt like it was too much. Slow and steady, I guess.
How long after surgery did it take until you drove a car by yourself?
Go for a walk by yourself?
Thank you for the feedback and willingness to share your experience with me.
How long after surgery did it take until you drove a car by yourself?
by Persephone - 2023-03-19 17:06:00
What advice did you receive from your medical team about when to resume driving? I would think if you've got a reasonably sized vehicle and not a large truck that you'd need to climb into, one week would be the window, which you have already finished - that is, unless you're feeling dizziness, in which case you should consult the doc before driving.
Regarding walking alone, starting small is all one has to do. If it's just a few steps outside and back, all good. Going up and down stairs a time or two is good. It's OK to give yourself time to heal and recover - the analogy of Rome not being built in a day could apply here. Take care.
by Lavender - 2023-03-19 18:22:17
Your cardiologist or EP is your go-to person for restrictions advice. However, mine said I could drive in a week, sex was ok in a month if I wanted to, as long as I was on bottom-didn't want me holding myself up with my arms, I could walk anywhere alone and did walk on my street in a week.
I was just fearful and more comfortable having someone with me at first. I had been fainting for six months prior to getting the pacemaker so I got anxiety when alone. I had fainted in a store, while at a redlight light driving alone, I started to faint but dropped my head under the steering wheel side, I fainted at home several times. My heart had been pausing but it was sneaky-a rare arrhythmia called ventricular standstill which no one detected for those six months😵💫 Finally I had a 33 second pause at home while wearing a heart monitor-the culprit was caught!
It took a while to trust my body again but I do now. I've had my pacemaker two years. I noticed that I felt much better mentally and physically at the seven month mark. I go everywhere now and don't think about the pacemaker much.
by piglet22 - 2023-03-20 06:40:08
Of course it's a big moment in life when you have some important corrective procedure to something as emotive as your heart.
Look at it as a positive step forward in maintaining your well-being.
The heart is well suited to having treatment by controlling it's electrical activity something that couldn't be done a century ago without todays electronic devices miniature components etc.
See your pacemaker as your friend.
Get on with enjoying life and being part of quite a large number of people who have to have help with their heart day to day functioning.
by womiedodge - 2023-03-20 11:17:46
I had a pacemaker implanted on 3/14/23. Was totally unexpected. Heart rate dropped below 40 (thank goodness for my Apple Watch alerts!) and stayed there. This was not something I ever expected. Have suffered with pericarditis and am on medication for that, but this an entirely different issue. I, too, have so many questions about recovery. I guess I expected to be able to get up and do most anything right away. Am discovering that I must accept limitations and take things one day at a time. Am experiencing a rollercoaster of emotions right now. This forum is just what I need as I am reading comments and see that I'm not alone.
by Newlife58 - 2023-03-20 12:58:51
It does help to know I'm not alone.
Is anyone on a beta blocker? I'm getting very nausea after taking it. Anyone else?
I'm honoring my body when it says time to rest. Oh boy, is that new. The brain fog is bad too. Does this stuff go away or stop?
Thank you for all feedback and support.
Lots of us are on beta blockers
by Gemita - 2023-03-20 13:23:13
I don't get nausea from Bisoprolol (beta blocker) but symptoms will depend on dose. The higher the dose, the more symptoms can be expected. Mine is a low dose.
Yes brain fog and fatigue should ease as we get used to pacing and to any new medication. Beta blockers can be so difficult to get used to and many of us report extreme lethargy and other symptoms while on a beta blocker, including difficulty in exercising. I would speak to your doctor if you don't feel any better after a few weeks. There are many different beta blockers you can try for your PVCs.
by womiedodge - 2023-03-21 08:45:45
I was on a very small dose of metropolol. The doctors immediately took me off it because my heart rate was so slow and beta blockers can slow the heart rate. I was put on a beta blocker because of pericarditis.
You know you're wired when...
Your license plate reads Pacer4Life.
It becomes a part of your body just like any other part.
Emotions & Symptoms
by Penguin - 2023-03-19 05:16:40
Hi and Welcome,
Sorry to hear that your PM implant was a big surprise to you, but pleased that you have found this site as we can hopefully answer some of your questions and help you ride the emotions out whilst you acclimatise to having a pacemaker. I've tried to answer some of your Q's below. Others may help further.
Re: Emotions - Yes, it's very common to feel a range of negative and positive emotions. The emotions you're feeling likely come from the fact that your PM implant was a big surprise to you. It's always better to know what's going to happen and plan for it. That helps with acceptance and gets some of the emotion out of the way before the event. You now need to accept, adjust and deal with some of those emotions.
Re: Online Support Meetings - No, not as such. The forum allows members to post concerns and receive answers in a public online space. Member often build online relationships with other forum users who may have issues in common or who offer individualised friendship / support. The forum is anonymous and therefore not everyone wants to share the type of personal info that traditional support meetings encourage.
You're not alone and the passage of time along with increased knowledge and acceptance will bring comfort. It's early days right now. Hang in there!