Hi all,
This is my first time posting here. I was recently diagnosed with Chiari Malformation Type 1 in March after experiencing left sided numbness. Cervical and brain MRI both showed 8mm herniation. My symptoms seem to come and go as far as numbness, neck aching/headaches, but the one thing that constantly bothers me are heart palpitations. These started in May 2016 for me, worsened during pregnancy in July 2016-February 2017, and have never gone away.

I saw a Cardiologist in 2016 who has been prescribing me Toprol to manage them. There has never been a cause identified for the palpitations, but since the Chiari diagnosis and seeing several neurosurgeons, they think that the Chiari is the culprit. They advised that I be further evaluated by an Electrophysiologist to see if it actually is an electrical problem in the heart or the Chiari causing the palpitations. I have an appointment for 6/20 for evaluation.

Does anyone else suffer from PVC’s/palpitations/irregular heart rhythms from their Chiari? It’s such a horrible feeling, and often time scares me.

I was diagnosed with Chiari 10-11 months ago now, and my MRI’s show a 5mm movement of my cerebellar tonsils, show that my cerebellum is longer than it should be and is physically in my neck; and then I likely have a tethered spine and a neck issue of bending downward and forward more than my neck should be alongside my Chiari Diagnosis.

At night, a few nights a week, I have what feels like a “racing heart”, a “double heart beat”, and either pain or pressure in my chest, pain will radiate down my ribs, and i’ll have difficulty breathing. I’ve had my heart checked out and have been told it’s 100% healthy, no murmurs, nothing, likely just symptom of my Chiari.

The cardic symptoms scare me too. I find that taking deep breaths when my episodes happen helps, it helps me calm my mind, and keep my physically calm. I let the episode ride itself out, and try not to panic, it’s easier said than done. I’m not sure if this helps much, but it’s how I’ve learned to cope with my episodes and what I’ve been told about them.

Hi, I have had problems with palpitations my whole life. They tend to happen when I’m sleeping, it wakes me up. As a kid I used to tell my sister my heart was racing.


I have only recently begun experiencing palpitations as a result of my Chiari (assumed, I have not had that medically confirmed) and I completely understand why that would cause worry. In my case it feels like my heart is beating double time, but I haven’t done anything “strenuous” to cause such a feeling.

Much like tinaj, I have been trying deep breathing exercises to get through it. Controlling my breathing, if nothing else, helps to ease my panic.

Hello there! Did anything every come from this? I actually was having PVCs with VTs and have Chiari. I was told a few times my heart beats funny and nothing come from it, but I was scheduled to have my Chiari decompression, January 2020. During my preop and an EKG, my PVCs were very intense so they made me go so the cardiologist and then I was sent to the electrocardiologist. I was also put on medication to get my heart beat under control long enough to get me through surgery. My PVCs were happening over 50% of the time. So after my decompression surgery I had a heart ablation. Where they went in and took electrical current to get rid of scar tissue or whatever was making my heart beat weird. My heart and brain and “fixed” but they still have no idea if they went hand and hand or how this happened.

I ended up having an ablation done by an electrophysiologist in 2018. She could not confirm if my PVC’s were related to the Chiari or not. I have felt better cardiac wise for the most part since, but I do occasionally feel the PVC’s, particularly at night when I’m lying down or if I have too much caffeine.

How have you felt since your surgeries?

I have not, but I was having a crazy amount before and I never noticed it! My last EKG showed NONE! So far, so good! I’m glad you are doing well too and got it figured out. Both my cardiologist and neurosurgeon were stumped!