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AF Association
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stress triggers and total confusion

take back all i said in my last post,ended up going into AF after my wine and small meal,i was very panicky,can any one relate to this,i got up today ok,shorty after, had what seemed to be missed beats all day and then as i said AF,could those beats have been AF also in a milder form,can any one make sense of it.

11 Replies

Im sorry this is happening for you BUT only your cardiologist/EP will help you make sense of it. MY AF seems to follow sods law, I'll go 13 days without any AF, then I will say to my wife "Ive not had any AF for almost 2 weeks!" then that day it will happen. Often even thinking about it can trigger me off so I do my buggering damdest best to forget the condition even exists let alone I have it.

Of course I take drugs 3 times a day and see a cardiologist fortnightly so that's easier said than done but I carry on as if I am AF free.

Today I cycled to work, I am going to a martial arts practice after work and then will cycle home again.

I guess what you've been feeling could have been AF, with mine, lets say during a 12 hour episode, I have different phases, a fast pounding, a slow throb and sometimes I can hardly feel it. Other times it feels its going to come out of my chest!

Panic, stress and worry all make your AFIB worse. I have acupuncture once a week to help me deal with that. Its very therapeutic and helps me keep my condition in its place. It relaxes me, reduces my anxiety and helps me feel calmer.

I dont know if it helps my afib or not, but it helps my mind which in turn helps me feel better in general.


I am intrigued by your comment that you have acupuncture once a week and that it helps deal with your AF. Are you on warfarin? I have considered acupuncture but have been concerned that I couldn't have it because of the warfarin. Like you I try to pretend I haven't got it and continually hope it has gone away forever. I first had it in 1996 and then was AF free for 2 years.


I take Rivaxoban as an anticoagulant, but don't worry! The acupuncture needles don't pierce the skin, they go into the skin but not through it. They stimulate nerve endings IN THE SKIN not under it so the risk of bleeding is very very small. I've not had one in 18months of acupuncture.

I treat it as complementary medicine, not as an alternative.

It relaxes me, reduces stress and anxiety and that helps me deal with my AF in a more balanced and more positive way.

Give it a shot!


When did you last have a 24 hour (or longer) ECG monitor? This might show up what your heart is up to. Time, as Japaholic says, for your cardiologist or EP to tell you what's going on, perhaps. Hope you are feeling a bit better now.


Yes, I can relate to it totally. I'm on drugs which completely smother my arrhythmia, but even so, when I eat a meal I can feel it trying to send me into the wobbles. Before the drugs, I would get the wobbles after a meal, so I learned to expect it and ignore it. It would happen every time. But it would go after a while (an hour? can't remember).

With alcohol I'd get the same, but it would be delayed. So the meal would set me off straight after eating, as I say for an hour or so, and then the wine would set me off in the middle of the night. So I've cut out both. I only eat small meals; I graze all day instead; and no alcohol at all.

Even without those triggers, without the drugs I would be in an arrhythmia all day on and off anyhow, but much milder and not all the time. So the triggers would just tip me over the edge, and I didn't need much tipping.

Don't know whether that makes sense! Good luck getting it sorted anyhow.



From my experience of Af this is how it is, unpredictable and erratic

A stressful event for one person isn’t for another, it doesn’t mean it will trigger Af

Along with food and exercise, if only it were that simple we wouldn’t need medicine's or other interventions, the only thing that “fixed “my Af was an ablation last year, so far so good

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It makes me stressed just thinking about triggers! I have given up alcohol just in case but mostly to give my liver and kidneys a fighting chance. With all the meds I take I reckon they need it.

My A.F. follows a pattern when it starts. First ectopic beats which become more frequent then a fast heart rate then full blown A.F.

Everyone really is different. I felt better when I handed it all over to my E.P. to deal with as I was driving myself mad trying to work it all out. X


Those "missed beats" are actually ectopic beats which means out of place. What happens is that the ventricle contracts before the atria has passed any blood down into it so there is nothing for it to pump and your pulse feels it as a missed beat. It then recovers and pumps on the next beat. It is often a sign that the heart is trying to go into AF and for those post ablation is actually quite a good thing as it shows that the heart doesn't manage to. In your case it seems likely that the drugs are holding it together for a time until the heart becomes overwhelmed and drops into AF.


Yes Bob that all makes sense. X


Sorry your story switched to an unhappy ending. I too will have a few ectopic beats popping up maybe a day or two before an episode of AF. I feel it is my heart firing a warning shot to settle down and so I make sure I am really well hydrated, get some extra rest and relaxation, and if I'm lucky the AF stays away. Happy stress and worry stress both can bring it on for me too. Hope you are feeling better today!

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For me missed beats are precursors - and they sometimes mean I have digestive problems that are interacting with heart rhythm, so it's a danger sign. When ever I feel missed beats and the situation doesn't get better in about an hour, I take a quarter of a beta blocker as a prophylactic -- it ensures I don't go into AFib.


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