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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 08-30-2010, 02:23 PM
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Vagus Nerve. Lets Discuss.

I truly believe I have some form of Vagus Nerve issue. Let me explain my reasons. Maybe you can all relate to this.

I frequently get tiered after eating. Especially if I eat carbs. Take for example yesterday. I had a 2 pieces of toast, 15 minutes later I had one of the worst skipping episodes I can remember. It lasted a couple of minutes on and off and then went. Check this quote that relates to this.

The vagus nerve has an enormous sensory component, and it innervates the liver, spleen, and intestines, so it is extremely sensitive to cytokine production in these organs. As it turns out, bread, chocolate and cookies stimulate IL-1 production, which is known to activate vagal sensory fibers that end in the nucleus tractus solitarious, which ultimately results in increased CNS production of IL-1, which is known to produce acute-phase symptoms, such as sleep. When the researchers cut the vagus, they eliminated the sleep-inducing signals from the cytokines produced after over consumption of bread, chocolate, and cookies.
Another thing, I am not sure if the vagus nerve can become inflamed or anything like that, but I've had pains in specific spots on my neck where the vagus nerve runs, I've also had temporary inflammation that feels like a piece of string in that area.

Again, I'm not sure if the vagus nerve can be aggravated by body position (such as bending, twising, lying) but I have noticed skipped beats whilst in different positions.

My skips seems to stem from an external source and not the heart. I've never had heart attack symptoms in the 10 years I've suffered, which is a positive sign.

I'm researching at the moment. And I ask anyone who is interested in this topic to do their own research on the Vagus Nerve.

I've read up that it relates to anxiety too. Which is where I believe my papls stemmed from. It's not just a coincidence that the a lot of anxiety suffers report palps, PACs, PVCs and NSVT's, when before the anxiety they had non of those.

I'm sick of doctors defending everything you question.

A pacemaker links to the Vagus Nerve in people that have slow heart rates. The Vagus Nerve is the culprit in slow heart rates ... so why is it not possible that the Vagus Nerve could be the culprit for skipping hearts.

I would feel comfortable in knowing that my problem relates to the VN, it would give me a little piece of mind knowing that it's not a heart problem relating to the heart that doctors cannot pick up.

Express yourself. Share any research you do on this topic.

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Old 08-30-2010, 06:04 PM
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Jayone- I am that would love to agree w/ your "conclusion"...I for one feel it's what makes my life "hell" palps happen during breathing, like squatting, lifting weights, using the bathroom, bending, twisting just seems that maybe my breathing or excitement might be the culprit...or at least I'm w/ you, I think it's vagal related but I too asked my cardio, all 3 of them, they didn't agree...but I beg to differ....I just hate getting so scared when this happens..mine keep happening off and on all day today...truthfully, this happens more often then not...I hate living w/ them everyday
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Old 08-30-2010, 06:08 PM
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I left out the word * one
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Old 08-30-2010, 08:33 PM
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Ok, more to add here relating to my experience.

The next quote is relating to twitching of my eye lid. I have this a lot. It's possible.

Most likely it's a gut irritation of some kind: the signals from the gut to the brain go via the Vagus nerve, which causes reflex activity in most of the other cranial nerves, in this case the facial nerve. Daily and monthly pattern may offer more clues. Don't forget to consider the relevance of drugs (caffeine was mentioned) and deficiencies of course, as already mentioned.
Now, revert to my first post about chocolate aggravating the VN. I've noticed skip beats after eating a small chocolate bar, but another important point ...

At times when I each chocolate I will have this intense horrible pain at the back of my throat. The vagus nerve runs around that area. That's why doctors ask you to say "arrrgh" because they are testing the VN.

The VN is also responsible for causing a difficulty in swallowing. I've had cases where I struggle to swallow for brief seconds.

I've also had issues where it feels like my windpipe closes for a split second. I've also had episodes where it happens during sleep and I stop breathing for long periods. My girlfriend has spotted that. That's also tied into the VN.

Now, I don't think I have damage to the VN because if I did I'd have these symptoms constantly. I think my VN is sensitive to certain things.

I'm going to do more research.

I'm going on a short holiday tomorrow. Can't seem to sleep though Got to be up in 6 hours.
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Old 09-01-2010, 12:08 AM
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Hmm. I find the first quote in your post fascinating and I hope to have some time this winter to research that more.

Here are some thoughts of mine, and you can take them or leave them as you wish:

While yes, the Vagus is responsible for a good deal of heart rate regulation, it's not telling the heart when to beat. It's not sending out a "Now...Now...Now" signal for the heart to contract. At least not that I know of. It's just telling it to go faster or slower, and to dilate or constrict blood vessels.

Actually I think its only ability is to tell the heart to go slower, if memory serves. It can't tell it to go faster.

Because skips and such are easily tracked on an ECG, and the general location of the source of the errant signal determined readily just by the scribbles traced on paper from the changes in voltage between leads, it would mean that the Vagus would need to be wired up directly to those ectopic foci. Which seems unlikely. More likely is an electrolyte imbalance, stress, agitation, dehydration or other things that directly affect the electrochemical reactions in the cells of the heart.

And so we're clear, a heart attack is very different from an arrhythmia. A heart attack happens when blood flow to the heart muscle is diminished or stopped because of a clogged artery, reducing the heart's pumping ability. Now, if this goes on for any length of time, the affected heart tissue dies and potentially presents a problem for the heart in propogating the electrical signal to the rest of the heart, and in those circumstances an arrhythmia can be dangerous. But in your research I'm sure you found that people who have arrhythmia after suffering a heart attack are treated much more aggressively because it's a more emergent situation.

But it's kind of a chicken and egg thing. An arrhythmia can't cause a heart attack, but a heart attack can cause an arrhythmia. So I wouldn't expect you to have heart attack symptoms unless you had issues making you prone to having a heart attack, like really high BP or obesity or high cholesterol levels or some such thing.

Regarding the vagus nerve itself and it's ability to transmit pain - double check this because I'm not sure on this - I don't think the vagus nerve has nerve endings capable of sensing pain up and down it's length. Kind of like the brain doesn't. No pain sensors there.

I know it'd be nice to wrap up all the maladies you're feeling with a tidy bow, and if you fix the vagus you fix everything, but I'm not sure you can make the ties between the vagus and everything else you're feeling.

Like eye twitching - extremely common and tied so directly to stress. Almost anyone I know who has these, give them 2 days of vacation and the twitches vanish. Now what I find relevant here, relative to stress and eye twitches, is that muscles in every part of our bodies work just like the muscles in the heart. They get a signal to contract, and a complex chain reaction is set off to make a coordinated contraction.

This is getting long, so I should wrap this up - you may have a vagus issue. But I don't think it can be tied to everything. It may be a contributing factor to your heart skips, but not a direct one, I think.

I hope that helps.
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