Can Gas Cause Heart Palpitations?

Gas in the digestive system can sometimes cause sensations that feel like heart palpitations, but the two are not directly related. Heart palpitations are the sensation of rapid, strong, or irregular heartbeats, and they are typically related to the heart’s electrical activity. On the other hand, gas in the digestive system can cause discomfort, bloating, and pressure, which might be felt in the chest area and misinterpreted as palpitations.

Here’s how gas can lead to sensations that may be mistaken for heart palpitations:

  • Pressure on the Diaphragm: When gas accumulates in the stomach or intestines, it can exert pressure on the diaphragm, which is a muscle that separates the chest from the abdominal cavity. This pressure can cause discomfort in the chest and may feel similar to palpitations.
  • Referral of Sensations: Gas-related discomfort in the abdominal area can sometimes be referred to other areas, including the chest. This means that you may feel sensations in your chest even though the source of the discomfort is in the abdomen.
  • Anxiety and Awareness: Experiencing gas-related discomfort or bloating can be distressing, and it may lead to anxiety or heightened awareness of bodily sensations. This increased sensitivity to sensations in the chest area can lead to a perception of palpitations.

While gas itself is not a direct cause of heart palpitations, it’s essential to distinguish between the two sensations. True heart palpitations should be evaluated by a healthcare provider, especially if they are recurrent, prolonged, or associated with other concerning symptoms like dizziness, shortness of breath, or chest pain.

If you are experiencing sensations that feel like heart palpitations and are unsure of the cause, it’s advisable to seek medical attention for a proper evaluation. A healthcare provider can perform an assessment, including an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) and other tests, to determine the cause of the palpitations and rule out any underlying heart-related issues.