Flying with Afib

Hello,

I have PAF, on Sotolol 40mgs twice daily and Warfarin. My INR is quite steady at 2.3. I was wondering if anyone has advise about flying with Afib as I am going to New Zealand in two weeks and the flights are 12hours, 8hours and 3 hours and that is just getting there. I am worried about going into Afib on the plane.I have read up about dehydration, no caffeine etc, but is there any other advice ? Thankyou

16 Replies

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  • Hi Sill

    Well like you off on some long flights but in two days time, all I would say is hydrate hydrate hydrate, better to pee all the time that get dehydrated, and as you say try and avoid caffeine and of course booze.

    To be honest it's the anxiety which is more likely to trigger an attack, so drinks loads of water, settle back with a good book, or the movie and try and relax, I am sure you will be fine.

    Be well

    Ian

  • Thankyou for your message, I will drink and drink- water of course and try and relax and get some sleep. Have a good trip and Merry Christmas!

  • An EP I spoke to about this said she thinks the stress of travel is part of the problem so minimise any last minutes rushed activities- plus the other things mentioned above,

    have a great holiday

  • Thankyou for the reply. I will be very careful not to rush about try to keep calm. Merry Christmas!

  • I work for an airline and agree with everything posted , but also get up and move around or do some of those seat excersises recommended. DVT socks are a good idea and it's important to flex your lower legs and ankles as they can expand under the aircraft pressure. enjoy and de stress , it's Christmas !

    Lisa

  • I work for an airline and agree with everything posted , but also get up and move around or do some of those seat excersises recommended. DVT socks are a good idea and it's important to flex your lower legs and ankles as they can expand under the aircraft pressure. enjoy and de stress , it's Christmas !

    Lisa

  • Thankyou for your message, I will make sure I enjoy it all and Merry Christmas!

  • HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! What a wonderfully supportive site this is. But hey, while most of you guys are flying around or madly cooking, think of me on my 5-day silent retreat!

  • Sounds good to me! Let us know how you get on - I have been on retreats, though not silent ones, and at this busy time, I wish I were there!!

    Happy Christmas, and a good New Year to one and all!

  • Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  • Oh wonderful NZ and its people! I would recommend a neck pillow ( and an aisle seat at least, to be able to stretch a leg, with care ( trolleys etc )

  • Thankyou for your message and I look forward to getting to NewZealand!

  • I am off on long haul flights in the NY and am in A Fib (plus clot in heart). EP quite happy for me to do so.

  • Thankyou for your message, and have a lovely time away!

  • G'day Sil79112,

    I fly to Sydney/Melbourne quite a bit and agree with what Lisa (who works for an airline) says. You don't say how long you will be away for. I take my own Coaguchek XS self testing device with me when I travel especially if I'm due for a INR test at the time I'm away. But even so I would still self test anyway. I wouldn't advocate you buy one of these devices just for the trip (quite expensive) but try and maintain a consistent diet - consistent with what you'd eat if you were at home. At least that way you'll stand a chance of keeping your INR where you want it.

    I have never had an issue with flying tipping me into AF, during the flight or at the destination and only once in 5 years have I had my INR out of range - and I adjusted my own dose according to standard medical algorithms.

    If this is your first long haul flight I recommend you pack in your cabin baggage your doses of your medication for a few days (just have a safety margin) and depending how long you'll be away, pack enough supplies in your hold baggage for your round trip plus a safety margin. Also copies of your latest prescriptions are a good idea in case you get any grief from Customs/Immigration in NZ or indeed when you come back. Any evidence of your condition from your GP or Consultant would always be useful. Not saying you'll have issues but for the small amount of time it takes to attend to all this it might be worth it.

    Another thought ... you may find the time difference a bit strange (depending on how many times you have done this trip) but I take my doses at the same time as I would when I am in UK ( and I leave my watch on UK time). When I get to my destination I reset my watch and restart my doses on my destination time ... and vice versa for the return trip. This shouldn't de-stabilise your INR - your diet is the thing to watch ... be consistent.

    Finally, because I'm 6' tall and long legged I like to stretch out and I try and get those seats by the emergency exit - not out of any concern about the need to be first out but the space is great. If you check the airline aircraft seating diagram you should be able to identify these seats. I think the only downside is they tend to be near a galley - but - for me and my love of leg space I put up with the occasional disturbances.

    Good luck, enjoy your trip ... wish I was going :-)

    Aussie John

  • Thankyou for your reply, it has been very helpfull and informative.

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