Racing Heart

Hi, I am new to the forum, I am 45 and had my pm for 5 years. Has anyone experienced a racing heart while driving? I guess it was like a panic attack and I it took a little while to calm down. Do you think I just need my pm adjusted? I have a checkup this week.


My heart races too when driving

by gmnordy - 2008-01-09 04:01:12

Dont know why, but it always does. In fact I have practically given up all driving, and let my husband or son take me places. I also do have an anxiety disorder so it probably does factor in also.

Racing Heart

by SMITTY - 2008-01-09 04:01:40

Shona, GMNORDY, Do either of you have the rate response feature activated on your pacemaker? Sometimes a rate response can interpret road vibration from riding in a vehicle as body movement that requires an increase in the heart rate. Smitty

Racing Heart

by SMITTY - 2008-01-09 12:01:29

Hi Shona,

Welcome to the PM Club.

As for your questions, I'll offer a comment, but only your doctor can tell if your "racing heart" was due to the need of an adjustment on our pacemaker. My GUESS is that if you have had your PM for five years, during which time I'm sure there have been periodic checkups, I would say what you felt was not due to your PM needing to be adjusted.

I'm going to be so presumptuous as to try to review with you how I understand our PM works. Mind you I said a pacemaker because if you have a defibrillator to stop fast heart beats (V-Fib) then that is an entirely different subject. A PM doesn't stop fast heart beats; its only purpose is to try to keep our heart beat with a regular or uniform rhythm. In reality the PM sort of sits on the sideline monitoring our hart beats and when it detects the heart not beating as fast as the low setting on the PM, then it kicks in and brings the heart rate up to that setting. Or, if the PM detects the heart’s natural pacemaker not sending an impulse to cause a heart beat, the PM will send the needed impulse. In other words our PM is purely a helper for our heart and only sends impulses to cause a heart beat when the heart’s natural pacemaker fails to do so.

Now, with all that said, this is not to say the PM cannot get of time and cause some strange or irregular heart beast that may feel like the heart racing, palpitations, PVCs or skip beats. This usually happens when we subject our PM to an outside energy field such as an electromagnetic field. We seldom find an EMF field strong enough to affect our PM. These energy files can be created by high voltage power line, microwave transmission stations, even the electrical system of our automobile. But again, interference with the operation of our PM by one of these is rare.

What I would suggest is that you pay close attention to your surroundings when these heart racing episodes occur. If they happen when you are in the certain situations, then you could have outside interference affecting your PM. If there is outside interference, the good part is that when you leave the area where this is happening your PM should return to normal operation in a few minutes. Also, if your problem is occurring from outside interference on your PM, I don't think there are any adjustments that can be made to the PM to prevent these. A PM wearer would have to stay away from whatever is causing the problem.
Good luck,


Rate Responde

by gmnordy - 2008-01-11 04:01:23

Smitty, I dug out my medical records and saw that my rate response is turned on. It says AC and MV 120. I do not have a clue as to what that means. They changed it last month from just MV. Do you know what that all means?

Rate Response

by gmnordy - 2008-01-11 09:01:16

You know, I am not sure if I have that turned on, but I am going to find out Tuesday when I go back to get my results from the stress test. THanks!

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