AF Association
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Awful cough :-(

Awful cough.

Hi, I had a 2nd ablation this January. After additional heart shock, my heart has settled and no AF! :-) I got a head cold over 2 weeks ago which developed into this rattling awful cough. Dr has given me antibiotics , on end of 2nd course and I'm no better. I'm bringing up yellow phlegm, not as much as I need to though. Last year I had a rattling cough 6 weeks after my 1st ablation and this was because I was in the start of heart failure which resulted in having the 2nd ablation. I have no signs of AF accompanying the cough this time so I'm hoping and praying it is just an infection and not the start of heart failure again. My oxygen level is 98% , pulse 63 and no temperature. I'm still on heart meds, could they be aggravating my lungs I wonder? If anyone out there has had anything similar happen to them I would appreciate your feed back.

Thanks for reading x

9 Replies

I think it's best to check this out with the people who did the ablation- was there a nurse given as a contact?

it's best to check things out and GPs often don't have the specialised knowledge needed- it seems too long after the ablation to be connected but it's best to be checked if you had heart failure previously- better safe than sorry!!


Thanks RosyG. I have spoken to my arrhythmia nurse, and think I will go and get an ecg and xray tomorrow for peace of mind.


Always worth checking for your peace of mind... Though I find if I've had one awful chest cold I will get another at some point, guaranteed.


I had a similar experience and my lung specialist (yes I had been refered by my cardiac specialist) put me on a 6 week course of prednisolone which worked. I would suggest that you ask to see a lung specialist and gat them to check you over. Did they scan your heart and lungs to see what was causing the situation



I too have a cough where I bring up yellowish phlegm. I have had heart surgery ( Valve replacement and 2 bypasses) a year ago. I have now been diagnosed with PAF. Is the cough related to PAF. My doctor has sent me for lung X-rays which are clear. Should I just live with this cough. I am 72 years old. I am new to this site so I am not sure if I have sent it to the right place


I lived with in fection after infection for years and it was especially bad in 2013 and after a visit to my GP where the doctor told me she didn't like to give antibiotics and I should try and get over it on my own, I was so toweringly angry I contacted the arryhmmia nurse at Papworth. I was angry as I had only had two course sof antibiotics that year in two very bad infections, I have a history of these and when I get them I can't get rid of them and if left untreated have to take prednisolone which is effective but personally not something I want to take. I have af, I work full time with af, I manage af well and on the rare (and it is very rare) occasion I have to go to teh GP I do expect some recognition of my condition and they to realise that I rarely visit unless desperate. As a result of the GP my best friend's wedding was wiped out for me as well. Oh and they also tried to tell me a slightly raised glucose level might indicate pre pre diabetes which would be why I kept getting all the infections. Oh how wrong can you b eo no every level.

I spent a day at the Lung Defence clininc at Papworth with people who understood how frightening it is not to dare go to sleep in case you stop breathign as you lungs are so full up with muck. Who understood I cough my guts up on a winters morning. Who came up with the answers for me, compromised immune system and undiagnosed asthma. Treatment followed, very simple treatment, extra vaccines to stimulate immune system, an antibiotic pack to use at the first sign of an infection (I';ve not had to use them since they sorted me out) and a steriod inhaler. I have not been ill for almost 18 months now.

So no, none of you, don';t give up. You don't have to suffer with these infections. They are an indication that things are not well. And antibiotic resistence takes more than a couple of courses of routine antibiotics to kick it off.

Oh and in addition my immune system shows markers for possible bone cancer so I am now being monitored by addenbrookes hospital - I don't think about this, the chances of developing it are not that high but at least it has been picked up. I am so glad I went back to the people who really understand my condition.

I would not be working full time if I had continued to keep getting those really terrifying infections. Don't put up with being fobbed off.


Thanks for your comments all and I do wish you all well x I went to a and e this morning. All obs were good and ecg showed I was in nsr. Was coughing loads whilst in consultation and the doctor requested I have a nebuliser. This made no difference at all. In final consultation, the doctor told me he believes I have had a viral infection and that one of the heart meds I take 'Ramipril' is notorious for inducing coughing in a lot of patients with AF. So he suggested I contact my arrhythmia nurse tomorrow to discuss changing to another med. Will give this ago, and see if a new drug makes a difference.


Unfortunately for me earlier this year I was fobbed off for 3 months which put me in hospital with a swollen left atrium and AF. 4 GPs and two surgeries one drop in center would not give me an antibiotic. Do not be fobbed off demand to be treated. I'm still annoyed at the Doc I saw who told me to come back after 10days when I was quite clearly I'll at a new surgery I still feel like putting a complaint in even now! Maybe I should.


Hi Loo53, I had a similar problem last year which started 6 weeks after my 1st ablation. I began to get a real heaviness in my lungs, really uncomfortable and had a cough too. I also had swollen feet , left foot was particularly bad. My GP said the swelling in my feet was due to wearing flip flops and I just had a bit of a cough, and told me to get a cough linctus. I decided to take myself to a and e shortly after. X ray showed my heart was enlarged and there was fluid on my lungs. I insisted on an echo cardiogram which confirmed I was in heart failure. Needless to say I did have a few words with my GP.... This time though, although I'm coughing, it isn't that heavy feeling and I do get relief when I manage to cough up stuff. My lungs were clear on the xray , heart looked fine, no AF, all other obs good which makes me think it's tail end of viral infection or the Ramipril. I'm gonna have a long chat with my nurse tomorrow that's for sure! Hope you are improving ,x


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