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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Slow Heartrate?

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Author Topic: Slow Heartrate?
Mama2six
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Ok, so I noticed recently that my heartrate is often pretty slow. (55)

Might this be related to anything with the lyme disease?

I noticed this because I decided to take my bp because I was short of breath and feeling yucky a few nights back. I have asthma, but I have had weird breathing issues before over the past several months, like waking up in the morning short of breath, or being short of breath when going up stairs for days straight and then it goes away.

This was the first I noticed a slow heart rate.

My BP has also been on the low side at times, but I think that may be normal for me, because it has always been on the low side. (80/55, 70/45)

Lyme? Or not?

The weird thing is that I am not "in shape". I have hardly been able to walk for a year and a half, and the ONLY exercise I get is moving boxes (slowly) around a warehouse. So my resting heart rate should not be 55. (It is not always 55, but about half the time.)

Posts: 60 | From PA | Registered: Jun 2012  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Mama2six
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It was even slow after going upstairs then back down to get the BP monitor.
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Kat1777
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A thought: Have you had thyroid labs done recently? Hypothyroidism can cause a slowed pulse. In fact, it slows everything in the body.

I have the low blood pressure issue fairly frequently, and it's not normal for me. I do think that is a byproduct of Lyme.

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Lymetoo
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Could be Lyme. Are you on any meds?

bradycardia is a consistent low heart rate below 60

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--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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bigstan
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Sounds like LD heart block. Usually when LD does this it's IV picc line antibiotics time. Some people also have to get a pace maker until it clears.

Do a google search on Lyme disease heart block or Lyme carditis.

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HERX is a Four Letter Word!

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Mama2six
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Ok, thanks.
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Mama2six
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Yes, I've had thyroid labs done... there was a possible problem indicated by my regular labs, and so my Dr. did a full work-up. It was fine then, but she suspects the lyme had started a problem which resolved by the time we did the full work-up.

I am on a lot of meds, all oral. I have been on antibiotics for a year.

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GretaM
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When my lyme first started, pre diagnosis, my heart rate was 48-55 for about a month.

Bp was low 80/40 and respiration rate was very low also.

I was told it was because I was "fit" and played sports. (of course, this is from the same doc that told me a daily fever was "normal" for me). I cannot walk up a flight of stairs without doubling over. I am not fit.

If I try to do up my bra too quickly and hold my breath with my arms behid my back my heart misses beats and I faint.

I have the slow heart rate low bp and slow resp return during lyme flares or when I get too tired.

Best to run it by your LLMD to be sure there isn't an underlying problem.

These infections stink.

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Anthropologista
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Hi Mama2six--yes, Lyme can definitely cause bradycardia and irregular heartbeat, and did so in my husband. But it wasn't heart block (which is a more usual Lyme-related cardiac problem). His pulse went down to 40 sometimes.

Low pulse + low BP together mean that your vital organs may not be getting enough oxygen, so please make sure you don't exert yourself. Be slow and careful climbing the stairs.

My husband's cardiac symptoms were improved after 8 months of oral abx. His pulse is now 55-65.

He actually saw, quite by accident, a cardiologist who's encountered Lyme before and knows of its cardiac effects! And at Mass General, of all places! She suggested that his LLMD try IV abx. This may be worth asking your LLMD about that if oral meds aren't helping.

The cardiologist also said that it was important to try IV meds before considering a pacemaker. If the bradycardia is Lyme-derived and improves through abx treatment, you don't want to go through another cardiac surgery to get the pacemaker out. A pulse of 55 may not be slow enough to warrant one in any case.

Try to find a Lyme-friendly cardiologist. Cardiologists may be dismissive of your reports of low heartbeat. It's unusual for someone not in their 70s to have bradycardia ("sick sinus syndrome"). They told my husband his pulse probably went up at other times of day: that was not correct.

Finally, his Lyme-friendly cardio gave him a Holter monitor to wear at home for a 24-hr period. That's what you need to do in order for cardios to take your condition seriously.

Finally, his cardio recommended gentle walks to support the heart. Not fast walking. And not over 20 mins: aerobic exercise is good for the heart but can be damaging when you have Lyme.

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Mama2six
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Thank you for all of the information.

My current lyme dr can not do iv antibiotics. She is recommending finding a Dr. who can (and has suggestions about who)... but there are a lot of bad factors weighing in here. (mostly how sick I am and how far of a drive and how much it costs) I have not made an appointment with a new Dr. yet. My Dr. can prescribe daily shots, which she said is better than oral but not as good as iv.

My heartrate is not always low. It seems to be low when I feel short breath, but I'm still testing that theory.

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seibertneurolyme
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Have you been tested or treated for babesia? That can cause shortness of breath or air hunger as it is more commonly labeled. Not sure that that would cause a slow heart rate. But the symptoms of low heart rate and shortness of breath could potentially have different causes.

Make sure your LLMD is aware of both symptoms and I agree with your monitoring yourself to try to figure out if there is any pattern to the symptoms.

The more info you can provide your doc the better they can help you.

Bea Seibert

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Mama2six
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I was recently tested for babesia. It was negative, but my Dr still suspects it because of symptoms.
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