Atrial Fibrillation and long-term management with medication

Posted by AidanDunne @aidandunne, Jul 15, 2011

My Father was diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, 5 years ago and recently had his medication (soluthol) switched to a newer synthetic medication, however after 3 months his blood pressure drop to the extent that he was blue and extremely fatigued.

After numerous tests they found that the new medication even though the dosage was the same the potency was double strength, the additional side effect was a drop in insulin production.

Therefore when they realised this they switched him back but I am curious as to the long term treatment of Atrial Fibrillation via medication.?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Heart Rhythm Conditions group.

I have had afib for 13 year. 5 of those years I was on medication, then said I did not need it. It came back 5 years ago and my afib is worse. I have had an abilition and still have severe problems. I take metoprolol tartrate and have several attacks a week still, heart rate goes to at least 150 and blood pressure drops to 60/40. Anytime I talk to the dr he says I have had too much caffenine and I use very little each day. Any suggestions

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@johnniesue

I have had afib for 13 year. 5 of those years I was on medication, then said I did not need it. It came back 5 years ago and my afib is worse. I have had an abilition and still have severe problems. I take metoprolol tartrate and have several attacks a week still, heart rate goes to at least 150 and blood pressure drops to 60/40. Anytime I talk to the dr he says I have had too much caffenine and I use very little each day. Any suggestions

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Hi John,

My dad, luckily has been symptom free for a few years, he however has a very controlled diets, low carb etc. He is in bloodthinners which seems to help to control it with the addition of the A fib meds.

He did find that doctors weren’t not listening or dismissing him until he found a article online from a journal proving his point and since then he hasn’t looked back.

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stop the caffeine completely for a few weeks. If the problems persist go back to your DR. If he/she has no answers, change doctors.

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SO I am new to this discussion. i have had Afib once ten years ago, once last august and twice this august. the firs time I sought treatment and even went to the ER. SInce then it has been going away within six hours. I am 57 yrs young. Sometime I try to get it to snap back into rythym by exercise (running) .I am wondering if exercise can help clear the blood and minimize chances of blood clot. I do take an asprin a day.

Anyone have any idea what may bring this on? Seems that it hapens in August when i am training wondering if dehyration can be a cause?
Also it sounds like caffine is a cause?
How about drinking beer ?

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I am a 41 year old woman with atrial fibrillation and have hypertension. My doctors put me on medication but the problem still is there. They want to do an ablation of the heart. Has anyone had this done and what do they do and did it work for you?

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@startravlr

SO I am new to this discussion. i have had Afib once ten years ago, once last august and twice this august. the firs time I sought treatment and even went to the ER. SInce then it has been going away within six hours. I am 57 yrs young. Sometime I try to get it to snap back into rythym by exercise (running) .I am wondering if exercise can help clear the blood and minimize chances of blood clot. I do take an asprin a day.

Anyone have any idea what may bring this on? Seems that it hapens in August when i am training wondering if dehyration can be a cause?
Also it sounds like caffine is a cause?
How about drinking beer ?

Jump to this post

Dehydration, caffine, and alcohol all can effect Afib and even exercise can cause problems for some people.

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@pameladj

I am a 41 year old woman with atrial fibrillation and have hypertension. My doctors put me on medication but the problem still is there. They want to do an ablation of the heart. Has anyone had this done and what do they do and did it work for you?

Jump to this post

I have atrial fib and I had an ablation. It is a very simple 110-minute procedure. It worked for about 2 weeks and then I was back to normal or rather abonormal fib. Too many nerve endings for them to get them all in the atrium (the upper chamber) so people have this procedure done several times. I am not bothering again unless I get truly out of wack and need a reset. Currently on a whole bunch of meds: digoxin, rythmol, toprol – they seem to be doing the trick unless I exceed my 2-drink limit. 🙂 And of course, I take a blood thinner – just switched from Coumadin to Pradaxa – I haven’t noticed a big difference but it’s nice not to have my levels checked evey more. Good luck!

REPLY
@startravlr

SO I am new to this discussion. i have had Afib once ten years ago, once last august and twice this august. the firs time I sought treatment and even went to the ER. SInce then it has been going away within six hours. I am 57 yrs young. Sometime I try to get it to snap back into rythym by exercise (running) .I am wondering if exercise can help clear the blood and minimize chances of blood clot. I do take an asprin a day.

Anyone have any idea what may bring this on? Seems that it hapens in August when i am training wondering if dehyration can be a cause?
Also it sounds like caffine is a cause?
How about drinking beer ?

Jump to this post

I agree – all stimulants caffeine, sugar, and esepcially alcohol can bring it it. Champagne is the worse – alchohol and sugar delivered by carbonation.

REPLY
@johnniesue

I have had afib for 13 year. 5 of those years I was on medication, then said I did not need it. It came back 5 years ago and my afib is worse. I have had an abilition and still have severe problems. I take metoprolol tartrate and have several attacks a week still, heart rate goes to at least 150 and blood pressure drops to 60/40. Anytime I talk to the dr he says I have had too much caffenine and I use very little each day. Any suggestions

Jump to this post

Blood thinners have no effect on affib – they are there to prevent blood clots and strokes.

REPLY

I am 74 years old and have chronic afib. I have had a cardioversion to try to put my heart back into rhythm but it only worked for 48 hours. A few years later I had a nuclear stress test because I was experiencing tightness in my chest on walking briskly or walking up two flights of stairs. The nuclear stress test showed no blocked arteries and no significant change to the heart generally, so no need for further intervention.
I take Ramipril and Diltiazem which keep my hypertension under control and take warfarin ( Coumadin) to ward off strokes. I have had two stomach haemorrhages so there is a tension between the risk of increased from the blood thinner and the risk of a stroke if I don’t take the blood thinner.
I am currently wondering whether to move from warfarin onto one of the newer oral anticoagulants but worry that the latter cannot be stopped in the event of a bleed as quickly as warfarin can. Any ideas on this anyone?

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@Maryamm22 Regarding switching to the "newer oral anticoagulants but worry that the latter cannot be stopped in the event of a bleed as quickly as warfarin can" – this used to be a problem and I held off switching from Coumadin for a long time, however, my doctors assured me that this is no longer an issue, so I switched to Pradaxa at the beginning of this year. It's nice not to have to test for my levels every month, but Pradaxa is significantly more expensive than Coumadin.

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@maryam22

I am 74 years old and have chronic afib. I have had a cardioversion to try to put my heart back into rhythm but it only worked for 48 hours. A few years later I had a nuclear stress test because I was experiencing tightness in my chest on walking briskly or walking up two flights of stairs. The nuclear stress test showed no blocked arteries and no significant change to the heart generally, so no need for further intervention.
I take Ramipril and Diltiazem which keep my hypertension under control and take warfarin ( Coumadin) to ward off strokes. I have had two stomach haemorrhages so there is a tension between the risk of increased from the blood thinner and the risk of a stroke if I don’t take the blood thinner.
I am currently wondering whether to move from warfarin onto one of the newer oral anticoagulants but worry that the latter cannot be stopped in the event of a bleed as quickly as warfarin can. Any ideas on this anyone?

Jump to this post

I am 72 and also in chronic AFIB. I am on Diltiazem and carvedilol and the blood thinner Xarelto. I switched from Coumadin to Xarelto about 7 months ago . I was also told that bleeding on the new blood thinners can now be controlled so I agreed to take it. I like Xarelto so much better.

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