health matters

'My heartbeat is faster than normal'

'A doctor gave me some tablets for anxiety/depression'

Moderator: Biju Mathew, Web Editor
13:18 July 1, 2014
Heart Beat

A reader asks: One afternoon I felt that my heartbeat is very fast. I went to a clinic and they told me to go to a hospital for checkup. I met  a cardiologist. After diagnosis, I was told that my mitral valve prolapsed and I don’t need any medicine.

The whole episode triggered  anxiety and panic in me, which worsens my daily life. I applied for leave and went to my home country where I was better.

I met some cardiologists there, but they prescribed beta-blockers. A doctor gave me some tablets for anxiety/depression, which I’m taking, but still some time I feel panic attack and anxiety.  Now, I don’t feel hungry and eat very less and I have gastric problems and I keep burping after eating. Please advice.

Dr Sekhar S. Wariar (Specialist Cardiologist, Aster DM Healthcare, Dubai) replies:  There are a few details that are missing and I am not aware of some factors such as your age and gender.

Mitral Valve is located in the left chamber of the heart. The normal Mitral valve controls the flow of the blood between the upper and lower chambers of the left side of the heart.  Mitral valve prolapse is a condition where the hearts mitral valve does not work in a normal way. The flaps that seal or open a valve become floppy and don’t close tightly. It can also cause shortness of breath, irregular heartbeats (arrhythmia) and chest pain when backflow doesn’t occur. Backflow can also change the heart size and raise risk of heart valve infections.

Mitral valve prolapse is most of the times without any serious consequences unless there is thickening of valve leaflets and/or leakage across the valve into the left atrium, the upper chamber. More details from the echocardiogram report are required to comment about this case, as it can assist us in the diagnosis of Mitral Valve Prolapse.

However, as the cardiologist told you that you do not need any medicine, it is unlikely this will have any severe consequences. Beta blockers are given in MVP to treat symptoms of Palpitation and Chest pain. Anti-anxiety medications are to treat for panic attacks, which may be due to perceived threat perception due to the diagnoses of MVP.

It will be advisable to meet a Cardiologist with the echo report and discuss various implications of the diagnosis of MVP.

DisclaimerThis blog is a conversation and is not an alternative for treatment. The recommendations and suggestions offered by our panel of doctors are their own and Gulf News will not take any responsibility for the advice they provide.