New to AF

Hello I'm new to AF and to the forum, I have been reading some of the older posts to get a feel for the condition. I was diagnosed last week with AF, I have had a VSD from birth which has been monitored on a yearly basis by my cardiologist. This hasn't caused me any real problems over the years, valve regurgitation and rising blood pressure has been noted over the last few visits. After discussing having some palpitations it was decided to monitor with a 4 day holter monitor and 24 hour BP monitor. No palpitations occurred during the monitoring, so was quite shocked to have the diagnosis of AF. I have also been diagnosed with hypertension which I was expecting. I have been given the results by my GP, and have been prescribed Propofol for the AF, but currently nothing for the BP. I have a CHADS Vasc score of 2 and have discussed the anticoagulation options but not had anything prescribed yet. I also have ITP, and have maintained a good platelet count (over 100) for the past 18 months without any treatment for this. I think the GP is reluctant to prescribe warfarin, and is thinking more of aspirin, I will be going back for a follow up appointment next month where this will be discussed again. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I'm finding this all very confusing!

6 Replies

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  • Welcome and sorry to hear you are having problems. Asprin is not now recommended for AF anti-coagulation- I would seek further advice from your cardiologist as you have several issues and take their advice about which anti-coagulent would best suit you.

    I'm sure there will be lots of advice here soon.

    best wishes

  • Rosy has said it all really. NO ASPIRIN under latest Nice guidelines. See you cardiologist not your GP .

    Good luck

  • Hi and welcome. You raised several points,

    1. If there were no palpitations how can the ECG show AF? AF is diagnosed from the ECG by the absence of P waves. You do not always feel the irregularity as a palpitation, many people with AF are a symptomatic and only diagnosed by accident so it is quite plausible that you could have had short episodes without being aware of it.

    2. I wonder if you need to ask your GP the reasoning for not advising Anticoagulation? I always find if I know the reasoning, it helps.

    3. High blood pressure - I couldn't comment as I don't know enough about your other conditions and the interactions between your VSD and your ITP and meds you take for those.

    Your situation is not straight forward AF and I would imagine that there will always be a balancing act for risk/benefit of any medication but it sounds as though you are anxious and need some clear support and straight forward talking from your GP. I would suggest writing down all your concerns and your questions, maybe take someone else with you so they can support you, always helps to have another person you trust listening in to give another perspective.

    Keep informing yourself and asking those tricky questions, it pays off in the end. And Bob always gives good advice, if you have read his previous posts you will have picked this up. Aspirin has no use in stroke prevention for AF patients! Good luck and let us know how you get on, always someone here to listen.

  • Hi Toller and welcome to the forum. This is a great support group and if you read everything on the AFA website as well you will find you know a great deal about how to cope with this condition and hopefully help to ease your confusion.

    I can see that you've got quite a complex set of conditions there, I am not even sure what all of the acronyms stand for (will do a bit of light Googling), so I too would say your cardiologist is the person to make the decision about the type of coagulation you should be on. But with a score of 2 you should be on something, and NICE no longer recommends aspirin for AF. If your doctor tries to give you aspirin you might remind him/her of that...

    In the meantime just try to not worry about it. We all experience AF differently but there is lots on this forum to go by and always someone here who's had similar experiences and can help. Take care,

    Lis

  • All good advice. One thought. Is your cardiologist an EP? This is electro physiologist and they are experts in the electrics of the heart. If not, you could ask to be referred to one.

    I know its scary at first but it does get easier. Best of luck.

  • Thank you all for your kind replies. Will ask to be referred back to the cardiologist, currently not on any treatment for the VSD or ITP. Will also ask about an EP referral, though not sure how common they are here in rural Wales!

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