PTSD gets me a Pacemaker?

Is there anyone else out there that has or had PTSD and got a pacemaker after? In addition to my job as a boat Captain in the USNPS and 4 years as a rescue boat crewman in the USCG I was a first responder to both TWA flt. 800 and to NY Harbor on Sept. 11 2001. These events effected me very much to the point of attempted suicide and subsequent diagnosis of PTSD. June of 2006 my heart stopped and some doctors have said it is possible the stress of those events could have caused my heart stoppage. Anyone else?



by bini - 2007-08-09 01:08:26

Again, I agree with everyone else wanting to Thank you for the service you have provided to many americans!

In response to your questions Stress can affect you physically as I'm sure your well awhere of. I have a cronic illness that affects my nervous system and heart.

Stress is a huge issue for me in dealing with my symtoms from this illness. For me when I am stressed by Blood pressure and heart increases and then both decrease dramitcally when the stress is gone. I had to get a PM becuase this led to me getting very fatigued and fainting episodes.
This is probably not your sistuation but you should check with your Doctor and get more info from him.

Again thank you for serving our country and helping so many people. We applaud you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


PTSD & afib & heart problems

by maestro - 2007-08-09 04:08:31

No doubt in my mind that PTSD is correlated with excess stress hormones (adrenaline and other catecholamines) which impact the heart adversely.

Been there, done that myself.

In my case it was systemmic and chemical and very poor diet during down/stress periods. I passed out from ventr tach (SVT), and had 3 unsuccessful ablations. Each one made me worse. Ended up with PM.

I did a lot of research myself and learned a lot from the arrhythmia support group (

Best thing I can tell you: be certain to take Magnesium supplements. Try for at least a month. We all benefitted from Mag.

Look for a support group which can address all aspects of self: physical, spiritual, and emotional.

Be kind to yourself and don't despair.

Yes, one can die of a broken heart. But life is so short, it's a shame not to make every effort to enjoy the time you have. PTSD does get better, believe me.



by boatman50 - 2007-08-09 08:08:48

Thank you all for your support. It is very frustrating to have never had a heart problem and then bam! I have a pm. I have been to many doctors and they all have their own opinions, it was my EP that helped the most after months of dizzy spells etc. I guess I just want to know why I have a pm, what caused my heart to stop? This club has been a great place to ask questions and help others, both comforting to do. As for the PTSD I sometimes feel like a dope when I compare myself to what others have gone through (our troops in Iraq) but that doesn't matter.
ebwdcThanks for being here, Boatman

Hi Boatman.

by Gellia2 - 2007-08-09 12:08:16

I'm with Cathryn. Thank you just doesn't seem enough, but it's the best I can do.
Thank you. Thank you very much!

I'm wondering....

by bambi - 2007-08-09 12:08:28

if you're questioning your need for a pacemaker? Are you wondering if the stress from your experiences involving 9/11 and TWA caused your heart problems or if it was something else? I can't answer that, but I'm sure your Dr. can. I have suffered from PTSD, and did get a pacemaker about 3 years after that. However, even though I know stress and depression does affect our mental and physical health, I was told that my arrhythmias were caused originally from damage caused by a bout with rheumatic fever. All that aside, I am also along with Cathryn and Gellia, humbly thankful to men like you for how you serve your country and the people who are fortunate to live in it!
With much admiration,


by CathrynB - 2007-08-09 12:08:44

Hey Boatman. Wow -- what a life you've led! I can't speak to your real question, but I just wanted to say thank you for your years of service to our country, for the very difficult things you've encountered in your service to other people on TWA #800 and in NYC 9/11. You're obviously a very caring person to undertake such responsibilities. I'm so sorry it affected you in the form of PTSD, suicide attempt, etc and hope you're doing much better these days. I think you're fortunate to have doctors who recognize the connections between our mind/spirit and our bodies, and though I don't know if PTSD can cause heart stoppages, nothing would surprise me. Thank you again for your contributions to the people of our larger community, and do take good care of yourself and keep us posted on how you're doing. I remember many postings from you in my early months on this site that I found helpful. Cathryn

You know you're wired when...

You always have something close to your heart.

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