All 'done & dusted' - in sinus rhythm again!

Hi everyone, and sorry about the delay in posting but needed to wait until feeling better so it wasn't a negative post.

Well, it's day 3 post ablation. The team at Hammersmith were lovely, and reassured me that I'd be well looked after throughout the procedure and understood that it can be a scary experience. It was scary (for me) being told the risks and then going into the lab, but also reassuring that there were so many relaxed people prepping me and so many monitors and much equipment. I was anaesthetised for 4 hours, had two trans-oesophageal scan things to check for clots at start & finish, successful ablation via both groin entries.

When I was told I was back in sinus rhythm as I woke up, I was delighted as had not expected this so quickly. I had soreness in my throat, right groin and some perfectly tolerable chest pain which went quite quickly. I felt fab and by early evening was tucking into soup and a ham salad, although confined to bed until my catheter was removed. But, by night time, I developed a horrid restless agitation which I guessed was due to the anaesthetic coming out of my system (this is just an individual thing due to previous medications). I then had two different types of chest pain: on breathing in, and an underlying mid-chest pain even when not breathing. My monitors had been showing a very low blood pressure e.g. 84/40, (I'm normally on 3 anti-hypertensive drugs as have high BP. due to a kidney disease), and low pulse - between 30-44! I thought I was developing a chest infection but the doc in early hours of Saturday had ideas of investigating a pulmonary embolism (my mum died age 47 of this). Anyway, this was eliminated thank goodness and another doctor prior to my discharge told me that because my chest pain felt easier sitting upright/leaning forward, this suggests inflammation of the heart which is no bad thing following ablation.

So, I went home feeling increasingly unwell, struggling with bad pain on breathing which I was finding made me breathe more and more shallow. My temperature went up, but later on Saturday night I discovered that Nurofen Plus helped me to feel loads better. Having had NO sleep the night before my ablation and the night of it, I slept for 10 hours on Saturday night - what relief! However, difficulties going to the toilet after catheter removal would seem to be indicating a urinary tract infection, so I've been awake all night again and hoping to see a GP this morning. Despite this I'm feeling so much better and the chest pain is fine with the pain meds. I was given a report of my procedure which is rather full of jargon & acronyms, so is quite incomprehensible! It confirms I'm in sinus rhythm though. It also indicates on my ECG prior to discharge that I have bradycardia and abnormal ECG. Something about ischaemia too.

Sorry about the long post. Also, to those having theirs coming up, remember that this is just my experience and much of it probably only individual - don't want you to be fearful. I am just so chuffed it's done and appears to have been a success. That remains to be seen when I return to normal activities such as will I get breathless and fatigued all the time, or feel faint after going for a swim etc. I'm optimistic though! Watch this space...

Bev :-)

19 Replies

  • Well done Bev and do take it easy for a couple of weeks at least. I never ad a catheter for any of my ablations but had one after prostate surgery and I think that your problem may well just be the disruption of having had a catheter. I couldn't pee at all after they took mine out (two weeks post surgery) and then they couldn't get another one in so it was back to the cystoscopy room for a camera etc etc. All very boring and painful I have to say. In the end I had another one in and had one all told for a month with attendant problem so know about all that this entails.

    Do remember that it takes at least three months for the scar tissue which blocks the pathways to form so you could get some funny rhythms in that time. Don't panic as this is all quite normal as is the chest pain. At one point I thought they may have mistaken me for Count Draculaa and driven a stake through my heart but it soon passed. Use the bruising in your groins as a guide and when that has faded away then you are starting to heal. Keep us posted.


  • Thanks Bob, good advice. I've been feeling quite odd palpitations consistently for past few hours instead of intermittently and was starting to worry. Interesting re. scar tissue issue too, thanks.


  • Welcome back to sinus rhythm

    You will be better soon , I had mine two months and it was successful , but still I'm having minor palpitation from time to time and it is improving

    Please take your time to recover easily , as Bob said we need at least three months to recover

    Take it easy and expect irregular beats which is normal during recovery


  • Thank you Maitha, good to know that.

  • hi Bev glad to hear you are okay. Just take it easy for a while and hopfully you;ll get a lot better. winter is on the way so get out the big pullovers and electric blankets lol

    best wishes


  • Ha ha, they are out already. Saturday evening I was chilled to the bone! Cheers.

  • Really pleased it all went well for you. The aches and pains do go away. Try to keep lifting down for at least a week and as bob said as the bruises goes it seems to all follow suite. It was not long, because you told it has it was for you. We are all so different and are affected by AF in so many different ways. AF is not a one off complaint with the same effects because it has so many derivatives.

    Be well


  • Hi Bev, I'm pleased that it's all over and that your recovery is progressing well. It was good of you keep us up- dated.

    There is something that is worrying me - catheterisation. Bob says he didn't have it. How common is it during ablation? Is it a totally unnecessary procedure on a check list? The reason I'm asking is that it was done to me, for no good reason, after my first son was born. It was like being electrocuted and caused all sorts of problems. I refused to let them do it after my second son was born and I don't want it ever again.

  • Have had two ablations and no catheterisation either times. Not heard of anyone having that done during an ablation until mentioned here.

  • Many thanks for this response. That makes me feel much happier about having the ablation.

  • Hi Jenny, I've no idea how common catheterisation is and I wasn't told about it beforehand. I can understand why you don't wish to be catheterised again and hopefully they would respect that - but you need to inform them though in case they just assume its ok.

    I was diagnosed with a UTI this afternoon and am on antibiotics. Really hope all goes well for you.


  • Thank you for this. I had been thinking that I should tell them that I would not want a catheter. The thought of it sends me into a panic. I do hope that the antibiotics work for you and that both your heart and your bladder will settle down satisfactorily.

  • Hi Bev - I'm glad all went well for you with your ablation. Keep us informed of how you get on now. Wishing you well.

  • Thanks for your good wishes Jeanjeannie,

  • Hi Bev. Sounds like it was an ordeal but hopefully that is temporary and you will start to feel the benefits soon. Mine tomorrow so a bit anxty!! My inr usually on high side but today 1.9 - typical but still going ahead, I think.

    Will look forward to progress reports so I can compare. Be well. Marie

  • Hi Marie, Glad your all set to go tomorrow. I'm really glad it's over and things moving on and the discomfort is a price worth paying if we get rid of our symptoms eh. I'm sure it will be fine and yep, we can compare progress - looking forward to it.

    Best wishes for tomorrow - soon be over.


  • good luck!!

  • Hey Bev

    That's good news

    I finally got my date - next Wednesday - yah - cant wait I'm over feeling the way I do.

    Great to hear yours went well


  • Hi

    I had a catheterisation for my first ablation but not for any of the others. But the first one was done privately. I wander if that makes a difference


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