You didn't say what you were using to measure your heart rate, and that can be very important. But if your heart rate was anywhere near 250bpm, that is an exceedingly high sinus rate. Your profile indicates that you're young, and this might enable you to reach such a rapid sinus rate. As a young athlete who specialized in sprint cycling, I could push my maximum sinus rate into the low 200's at times during peak output. But that was as high as it would go. SVT events however could push it as high as 260. I'd be interested in knowing why you thought this was sinus tachycardia rather than a supraventricular tachycardia. Do you know the difference?
The fact that the rate ramped down slowly certainly removed it from the SVT category. I found many times that when conversion occurred from Valsalva, that the rate was still often above "normal" range, and gradually slowed to normal. I always attributed it to the anxiety I felt when one occurred. But one thing was unmistakable, and that was the instant drop from 240bpm to perhaps at times 120 bpm. That sudden calmness in my chest was a very welcome feeling.
I had massive health anxiety at that time, so I feared the worst. When my heart rate climbed that high, I feared it was VT, but my GP told me I had a run of SVT, judged from the symptoms. But my cardiologist told me it was sinus because it gradually slowed down. I thought it was weird that sinus tach could get as high as 230, but he told me it could.
Here is something simple, yet good to read:
The most likely considerations for a regular, narrow complex tachycardia are sinus tachycardia (ST), atrial flutter with 2:1 conduction, and supraventricular tachycardia (SVT, a generic terms that encompasses a few remaining rhythms originating above the ventricle). Atrial flutter is diagnosed when one sees atrial beats at a rate of 250-350/minute.
The distinction between ST and SVT can be difficult at very rapid rates. Here are a few clues that may help in this distinction:
1. Generally the maximal sinus rate that a patient produces will be 220-age. That means that a 20 year old can possibly have a ST up to 200 beats/min, but a 70 year old can only have a ST has fast as 150 beats/min. Rates that exceed that simple formula are extremely unlikely to be ST.
2. If the rate varies with respiration, with positional changes, with relaxation, or with fluid administration, these all favor ST.
3. If the rate reduces slowly, it favors ST. SVT, on the other hand, tends to "break" suddenly.
4. SVT generally will either have no P-waves visible or there may be P-waves just after the QRS complexes. These are referred to as retrograde Ps.
5. History, history, history. Is there a reason for tachycardia, for example a history consistent with dehydration or anxiety? That favors ST. If the patient reports palpitations or other symptoms that were of abrupt onset, that favors SVT.
6. Valsalva maneuvers may gently slow down ST but will either not affect SVT or will abruptly break the SVT....SVT shouldn't gently slow down.
SVT is supra ventricular tachycardia. It just means it is stemming from above the ventricles, so it is not V-tach. It doesn't mean that it is anything irregular or worse than ST, it just is considere SVT because of the rate over 200.
That being said, I am a little rusty and I think SVT stands for something else, as well, and can confuse people. I will do more research.
I've experienced sinus tachycardia in the 230s. I was recovering from pneumonia and decided to go exercising (not a good idea..) ALONG with having massive anxiety.
My cardiologist decided it was sinus tachycardia, so I guess I'll have to trust him, though at that time I was convinced it was SVT (and feared it was polymorphic VT, lol)
Anything over 200 is considered SVT... at least that is what they taught us in cardiac nursing.
Sinus tachycardia = A normal, but rapid, heart rhythm.
Supraventricular tachycardia = A rapid heart rhythm that origin somewhere else in your upper heart than the normal sinus node.
While sinus heart rhythms CAN (it's not common) get as high as 250, I hope your heart rhythm was this rapid when you had your tests done by the doctor. Someone with supraventricular tachycardia can also have sinus tachycardia at the doctor's office :-)
Treatment is different. Sinus tachycardia (if you tolerate it without losing the cardiac output and blood pressure) do not necessarily need treatment. Supraventricular tachycardia requires treatment.
...I was going to add that I believe the maximum sinus heart rate is recognized as around 200 and decreases as one ages. I would want to investigate this further because if you're in SVT, it's not really good to continue to push yourself.
I don't want to second guess a physician, but I'll say again that 250 is exceedingly high for a sinus rhythm. Is it even possible?... I don't know. Supra ventricular Tachycardia rates usually come in around that rate. As a child, my SVT rate was measured at 312bpm. I was 6 years old at the time.
no but the internal medicine doctor did put me on a heart monitor and the results came up as sinus tachycardia nope i dont know the difference
at the gym it had a hr monitor on the Exercycle.
what exercise is safe to do at the gym?
250 is way beyond a normal sinus rate. If you say it was an average, that would mean that your hr was even higher at times. It sounds to me like a malfunction of your heart rate monitor (for instance from interference with other electrical equipment).
My heart rate monitor always went crazy when I was cycling and crossed power lines. Then it also read hr in the 200+ range.