I've just returned from my visit to the Cardiology Department at my local hospital.
At no time did I see a Cardiologist. A very lovely Nurse Practitioner took all my details and read my ECG print out and then trotted off to see the Consultant. She returned and offered me a cardioversion, but I would have to go on Warfarin and another drug which escapes me and have the cardioversion in 6 weeks. However, I have terrible IBS and so Warfarin is not an option for me.
The other suggestion was to offer me Diltiazem in support of the other drugs I'm taking. (10mg Bisop, Digoxin 125 mcg and Candesartan for my BP, plus IBS treatment). No anticoagulant was offered for this option, despite my mentioning that my father and his siblings had all had strokes, which killed most of them.
Am I right in believing that none of these drugs will actually alter the rhythm of my heart? I thought that was the whole idea.
I was taking Adizem for 7 years prior to this recent AF (my GP took me off it in favour of Digoxin) and I told her this, but she said it is not the same as Diltiazem. After a minor tantrum on my part, the Nurse went back to the Consultant who decided that I should stop taking the Digoxin and start taking Apixaban. The whole episode was surreal. I asked why I wasn't being offered a rhythm control drug such as Flecanide. Do they actually care that they're giving me drugs which make me absolutely exhausted and ill? The Nurse told me she couldn't really go back to the Consultant to ask. She assured me that at 61 I am at a low risk and will arrange for an echo and a 24 hour monitor.
I suppose at least I got my anticoags.
I'm sorry this is longwinded, but it took a huge amount of courage to go today and to not even see anyone who could make a decision, make me feel very insignificant. I left the hospital totally dejected.
Any uplifting comments would be gratefully received