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1 day ago · POST AFIB ABLATION RECOVERY....NEED SOME HELP, PLEASE! in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I'm sorry your recovery went on so long and I sure hope mine doesn't! What did your doctor say about the length of your recovery? Did he talk about putting you on antiarrhythmics during that time? Was there any talk about a second ablation in time? At my one month post ablation, the PA now has me wearing an event monitor for a week, which I will send back this Monday. He also talked quite a bit about Sotalol and THAT totally freaked me out!!!! I'm only one month post ablation, had 4 or 5 fairly minor episodes of AFIB during those first 4 weeks which were nothing compared to before…….and now I'm wearing a monitor and will run away before I ever take Sotalol. He never listened to my heart nor did he check my groin sites. I lost quite a bit of trust in him that day. I feel like I'm being pushed to recovery way too fast!!!! Unless there WAS something really wrong, I wanted to be told that things were going forward fine, to just relax and take it easy and he'd see me in another month. Now I'm wondering if I should get another opinion! If this monitor shows anything, he'll probably suggest I have a heart transplant. I'm trying to be funny, but I'm not finding this PA very funny at all.

1 day ago · POST AFIB ABLATION RECOVERY....NEED SOME HELP, PLEASE! in Heart Rhythm Conditions

Hi aparr…….did you have an ablation? If you did, can you tell me what your blanking period was like…..symptom wise? I am just now one month post ablation and can feel my heart and chest (and yes….throat) starting to calm down. I would just like some idea of what to expect from the next 2 months until the "verdict" comes in? Thanks so much for writing!

1 day ago · POST AFIB ABLATION RECOVERY....NEED SOME HELP, PLEASE! in Heart Rhythm Conditions

Hi danab……….wow! Your type of arrhythmia is pretty scary but it sounds like they've got a good handle on it. Your words meant a lot to me because you are so calm and I really need to learn how to do that. That I have panic disorder makes it harder, but when you can still reach out to other people who are afraid, you give me courage. Thank you so much and I hope your heart is soon 100% better!

1 day ago · POST AFIB ABLATION RECOVERY....NEED SOME HELP, PLEASE! in Heart Rhythm Conditions

Hello AFRobin…Like you, I most definitely thought I needed to speak with my doctor or his PA regarding these symptoms, and I did. It took most of the day for them to get back to me and by then I was pretty panicked, but they assured me that ALL the symptoms I was feeling, including the buzzing/vibrating stuff, was normal. Maybe not extremely common, but nothing to be concerned about. The doctor said it was most likely very small nerves that had been irritated, inflamed or even damaged during the process and it was all part of the healing. He said these feelings would probably only last a couple of days, and he was right. On the third day, they stopped and have not returned. I am now one month post-ablation and have VERY minimal symptoms that feel more like muscle spams than AFIB for which I am incredibly grateful. My recovery seems to be going well and I am trying to be as optimistic as I can.

5 days ago · One month post ablation follow up.....NOT HAPPY in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I have done a lot of reading about the "blanking" period following an AFIB ablation. Much of what I've read has stated that during this time of healing, our AFIB can actually be exacerbated by inflammation and the trauma to the heart and surrounding tissues…..not only by all the poking and prodding, but let's NOT forget the rather massive amount of burns!

Doctors at the Mayo Clinic, the Cleveland Clinic, UC Berkley and several other top notch hospitals have all said this is perfectly normal and to be expected… are some other post ablation symptoms that go hand in hand with our hearts healing process. In the month since my ablation, I have had about 4 or 5 episodes of what I believe are AFIB. They feel pretty much the same but are not as strong, only once have they gone over 100 beats and the episodes do not last as long. (I kept a daily journal of my BP/HR and oximeter readings)

Yesterday, at my one month follow up, I saw my EP's PA (the last time I actually saw and talked to my EP was 3 weeks BEFORE the ablation. I "think" I saw him for a minute in the pre-op area the day of the ablation, but I was a bit groggy and don't actually remember. I stayed overnight in the hospital and thought I would see the surgeon before I was discharged, but it was his PA who talked to me and discharged me) At the one month follow up, my EKG showed I was sinus rhythm but the PA thought it would be a good idea for me to wear an event monitor for 7 days. (?) My totally non-medical gut feeling was that it was a bit early in the game to go that route since it was "normal and expected" to still experience AFIB during the first 3 months while the scar tissue was forming. I just wanted him to tell me it was to be expected and unless it really got out of hand, I just had to buck up and get through this blanking period. Instead, I am now scared to death as in his summary report to me he stated "LINDA HAS NOT PREVIOUSLY BEEN ON ANTIARRHYTHMIC MEDICATION BUT WITH CAD AND PRIOR STENTS, WE WILL PROBABLY NEED TO PLACE HER ON SOTALOL OR DOFETILIDE AFTER A THREE-DAY STAY IN THE HOSPITAL IF ANTIARRHYTMIC THERAPY WAS NEEDED. I BELIEVE WE NEED AN OBJECTIVE RECORDING OF HER HEART RHYTHMS TO IDENTIFY AND QUANTIFY HER ARRHYTHMIAS PRIOR TO STARTING ANTIARRHYTHMIC THERAPY. a ZIO PATCH MONITOR WAS STARTED TODAY FOR 7 DAYS." I am ONLY one month post ablation and he's already talking Sotalol? I DO NOT want to be placed on this medication!!!! Why wouldn't he just discuss a second ablation to locate any gaps or possible areas that had "self-healed?" I've read so many posts where people say their second or even third ablation finally did the trick and they are very happy living AFIB free…..some for many, many years. I feel like my recovery is being rushed. I AM a very anxious person, and now I'm concerned that this possible need for Sotalol is only going to trigger more AFIB. Any and all advice would be incredibly welcome. I know this post is already far too long, but could some of you please tell me what some of your symptoms were during the blanking period. You have no idea how reassuring it would be to know. I am a 67 y/o woman with no support and I am very frightened. Thank you so much.

Tue, Mar 26 3:50pm · POST AFIB ABLATION RECOVERY....NEED SOME HELP, PLEASE! in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I had my ablation last Wednesday, March 20th, and was discharged home on the 21st.. Apparently all went well. That day, the 21st, AND the following day, aside from being exhausted and sore, I did not experience a single AFIB episode! You ALL know what a joyous feeling THAT is! I began to foolishly hope that I was going to be one of the very lucky ones I have read about on these sites who say after their ablation, they felt like a million bucks, didn't have a single issue with their recovery and were back at work in 3 days. Who ARE these amazing people? After 3 days I was still trying to climb out of the fog from the general anesthetic! (Actually, there was a bit of a mishap there. Turned out I was extremely intolerant of this particular anesthetic and had a very nasty and frightening "resurfacing" from it. And please note that it was an INTOLERANCE……NOT AN ALLERGIC REACTION. The difference really CAN be life and death) Sorry, I see I am going into far more detail than I intended, I do apologize. My question, my concern, MY FEAR, is that on Saturday, 3 days post op, I woke up feeling what I can only describe as a sort of "vibrating/buzzing" feeling in my chest. It felt nothing like the pounding, chaotic beats that were MY AFIB experience. This sensation lasted consistently, with a few short pauses, from Saturday to now….Tuesday, the 26th. About 30 minutes ago it just stopped and so far, has not returned. I hope it stays gone as it was becoming not only annoying but frightening. Has anybody out there had this same or similar feeling? Does anybody know what It could have been? I'm trying VERY hard to be logical and think that it's just part of the healing process…..perhaps nerves calming down? Perhaps the inflammation was pushing on "something?) How's that for a highly medical term? "SOMETHING" LOL Any stories, experiences, odd sensations would really help me out. I don't see my EP for another 3 weeks, and while they did give me paperwork about what to expect, for those of us with some anxiety issues, the details are pretty skimpy. I am also trying very hard NOT to call the doctors offices and be one of "those" people. I realize to them, this procedure is basically no big deal, but for me, it has been SO much more than I thought. (Well, my bubble just burst…..I have just had some more episodes of things going on in my chest) Should I expect this to be as bad the entire 3 months before they tell me if the ablation worked or not. Right this minute, I'm feeling like I made a huge mistake having this procedure……maybe I should have tried harder to tolerate the antiarrhythmics? Thanks for listening. Being alone and scared is not fun.

Thu, Mar 21 7:14pm · DESPERATELY FRIGHTENED PLEASE HELP ME in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I'm too goofy to be on a computer……that is obvious! My reply was to catmom777, not @afrobin. But now I'm glad I goofed up as I did want to say to catmom777 that you made some excellent points and I hope she heeds your advice. It's good. Linda

Thu, Mar 21 7:07pm · DESPERATELY FRIGHTENED PLEASE HELP ME in Heart Rhythm Conditions

Hello catmom! Just got home from the hospital after my ablation yesterday. I have quite the story to tell you, but I have now been awake close to 40 hours and I can barely see to write this. I just wanted to let you know I haven't forgotten you or your questions and concerns. I see lots of folks are chiming in with some good advice that you should listen to. The decision for MY ablation was a real team effort that included my regular Cardiologist, the Electrophysiologists, which is quite a mouthful, so is commonly shortened to just “EP” or heart-rhythm specialist. I'm sorry if I'm sounding like a pre-med advisor now, but it IS important to know that a cardiologist and an EP differ in degrees of specialization. All EPs are cardiologists who have gone through an extra year or two of training after completing their cardiologist fellowship, and as stated before, all that extra training is only in the field of cardiac arrhythmia surgery.. So you definitely want one of these on your team as opposed to a general surgeon! And last, but not least, and this is just my opinion, but I found out yesterday how incredibly important THIS team member is. My EP also had me meet with the anesthesiologist he always chooses to work with. You are going about this the right way, which is to take it step by step seeing each doctor along that path before a decision is reached…..together. AFIB, if that is even what you have, is a very capricious "ailment." You need to be seen by the right people, led by the right people in the right order, to the right decision for you. I have to say that I am a little concerned that your GP has put you on blood thinners without you mentioning any testing beforehand. Anti-coagulants are serious medication, seldom given to people who have not been definitively diagnosed by specific testing protocols. If you ARE on blood thinners, which might only have been one day since you posted only 23 hours ago. I would urge you to call your doctor and discuss discontinuing them until you have seen and been tested by the cardiologist she is going to refer you to. Once you start thinners, if you DO have an arrhythmia, stopping them cold turkey increases your risk of stroke. Please talk to your doctor again, as soon as possible. See if she is can get you on a Holter or Event Monitor for 72 hours so when she refers you to the cardiologist, he will already have a good idea what is going on. I really have to call it a day…..well, closer to two, actually. If I don't sleep the entire day away tomorrow, I'll write you. Please take care of yourself. Linda