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Sat, Mar 28 10:54am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

Sometimes I forget to take my Eliquis and Diltiazem at the right time, close to the twelve hours after my dose. Can anyone tell me how big a deal that is? Like last night I took them both at 7:30. I have an alarm that goes off to remind me in case I forget. But, this morning I didn't remember until about 8:45 am. Will this create further problems for me? Thanks.

Sat, Mar 28 10:49am · Heart Problems, Cardiac Symptoms, But Test Results Normal in Heart Rhythm Conditions

You seem very young for any of this, but you might also be checked for sleep apnea. If you wake suddenly in the middle of the night and your heart is beating that fast, it's like you might have quit breathing and your heart is trying to get more oxygen by beating faster. I wore an oxygen meter all night last week to determine if I have sleep apnea. It was an easy test. I don't have the results yet but it wouldn't surprise me. Makes sense that your heart beats faster when it's deprived of oxygen.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I hardly ever choke in my sleep, but when I do, it wakes me up, BUT, I got a fitbit and it looks like I'm awake a couple hours in the night & didn't know it, so I wonder if I wake up because I quit breathing. No wonder I'm tired every day. My cardiologist appointment is in about 16 days and I'll bring that up. I suspect I'll be doing a sleep study. But, I have been doing a lot of internet research, and it turns out that even moderate drinking increases afib risk. I thought I was OK with having 1.5 glasses of wine a night (8-10 oz) but no–not OK. Now I can never drink again, so I fixed that good, didn't I? I liked wine. I also liked coffee. Now both are off limits thanks to my being clueless.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I'm too scared to drink any more alcohol. I used to love margueritas too. There are some real good ones here in real Mexican restaurants. I suspect that at family reunions I'll have a sip or two of wine. Some people in my family are big wine drinkers, and they do fine. They drink a lot more than I do and have never had any issues. I suspect though that the real reason for my afib is lung issues. My lungs have been through the wringer. My dad was a smoker and so were most of his friends so I grew up in a cloud of smoke. Then I lived with smokers on & off, and battled occasional long bouts with bronchitis, and then four years ago I got bad smoke inhalation. I thought I got over that but a year ago got sick and got bronchitis again and have been coughing on & off since. I have a smoker's cough. Also, I think I might have sleep apnea. This morning I had just woken up and suddenly was gasping for breath. That happens every now & then, not frequent that wakes me up, but I wonder if I quit breathing in the middle of the night sometimes. A few days ago I woke up at about 3:15 am with my heart pounding. My heart rate was 152 and it kept going up. Finally when it reached 181 bpm I called the paramedics. They came and sat with me until my heart rate went down to between 80 – 110 because I didn't want to go back to the ER for the 5th time in three weeks. It's a puzzle. Hopefully the cardiologist will help me figure it out.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

What I thought was a reaction to blood thinners turned out to be low sodium (127) after over-hydrating. The docs said to hydrate, so I did, and wound up in the hospital. Moderation in all things as they say.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

So, I just got back from the hospital. I went to the ER again at 4:30 am yesterday. Different hospital this time. I told them this is the 4th time I've been to the ER in two weeks so they admitted me. I was not having an afib episode but my dizziness, confusion, feeling rotten was so bad I literally thought I was going to die. After being hospitalized overnight I finally got my answer. My sodium level at admission was 127 and my brain was swelling. I had increased my water intake and reduced my sodium in my diet to avoid triggering an afid episode and made myself sick. After giving me a saline IV all night and half of today and monitoring my heart rate, they got my sodium level up to 132, didn't see any afib incidents, and sent me home. I will follow up with my GP this Wednesday and get a referral to a cardiologist at this same hospital so they can see my records easily, and go from there. I do want to get off Eliquis but know I can't just stop. It wasn't Eliquis that was the source of my dizziness and confusion though after all.
But, thanks for the input. I will keep trying to figure out a way to avoid afid episodes and maybe if I don't have any for a LONG time the docs will help me get off it.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I agree with you about pharmacists. I even had one explain to me how to deal with my cough when my doctor wouldn't listen to me and just prescribed an inhaler, which didn't work for me. Pharmacists are great.
But, now I will find out if Eliquis has side effects for me. The side effect I thought I was getting was actually from low sodium and an electrolyte imbalance. When I got diagnosed with afib the ER didn't tell me anything about how to take care of myself, so I read online that staying hydrated is important and a few people said (plus a friend of a friend) that cutting back on salt would help because salt can trigger an episode. So, I drank more and cut back on salt. Well, I started getting dizzy, feeling confused, couldn't think at all, was afraid to bend over because I thought I'd pass out, was afraid to even take a shower, quit driving, and kept getting worse and worse. Finally after not sleeping all night Friday, I decided to go to a different hospital ER, and this time was admitted. My blood panel showed a sodium level of 127, which if way too low. The minimum is 136. And the symptoms for that are exactly what I was going through. So they admitted me, put me on a saline drip, gave me a stress stress and echocardiogram to rule out heart issues (my heart has no issues), got my sodium level up to 132, and sent me home.
But, I have an appointment with my doc on Wednesday and will get a referral to a cardiologist and start addressing how to keep these afib episodes at bay and hopefully never get one again. I"m sure everyone with afib hopes the same thing. I don't like being on blood thinners. I am an active person and it's scary to think I could bleed to death if I have a bike accident. I might not be able to control the afib and have to remain on Eliquis for life, but I'm going to try to have a steady heart anyway.
But, the goal is to stay alive for the grandkids sake, like you, and not become disabled due to a stroke also.
Thanks, and have a great week.

Sat, Mar 28 10:44am · Questions about Eliquis in Heart Rhythm Conditions

I have not been having fun. I can't tell you how much I drink a day. A full glass of water in the morning (maybe 10 oz), a cup of camomile tea at lunch and after dinner (20 oz total), and I sip throughout the day. Plus I cut back on salt. Between those two changes to my routine I wound up with low sodium so the hospital put me on a saline drip. My symptoms were the dizziness, confusion, inability to think or even drive. The hospital got my sodium level up to 132 and discharged me. I feel better, but am still a little dizzy. Now that I know the problem I hope that goes away as I get more salt into my system. I can at least function now.