Considering Cather Ablation

I am considering the Ablation procedure for my Paraproxal a Fib but my EP says it cannot be done under just sedation. He prefers to put his patients to sleep and that is a concern for me. I would rather be awake but sedated and given local anesthetic for needle puncture site. Do most EP's do this procedure under sedation and do they put you to sleep?

25 Replies

  • I had a general anaesthetic for my ablation. I asked the EP why this was his choice and he said that he wanted an anaesthetist to look after me while he himself concentrated on the ablation without having to worry about me. I couldn't argue with that and frankly I would choose the GA every time.

    Whatever you have I hope it turns out well. I have no regrets about my ablation.

  • See my post below, some EPs don't employ an anaethetist to do the sedation, therein lies the problem!

  • I had GA. There is less chance of mistakes frankly and you can't suddenly move at the wrong time and do yourself damage. Some methods of ablation such as laser balloon will only be done under GA for this reason. Also I am a devout coward and really didn't want to know what was going on. Piece of cake old bean.


  • Bob, I had a laser balloon ablation with sedation - lots of it though as I didn't surface for ages and remember nothing!

  • I'm only going on what the book says (when it comes out). Sounds more like GA to me than plain old sedation.

  • Fentanyl and midazolam Bob.

  • I've had both and to be honest I'm not sure which I would choose given the option. I guess I would want the one the EP wants if he or she specifies a preference.


  • I had cyro ballon freeze ablation under the LA my EP never gave me the option of a GA.

    Was told it was something to do with the 3d imaging they use during the ablation and probably the recovery means you leave hospital quicker, hence no hogging of the bed, cynical view. 😄

  • Me thinks you have a point there Mick. Because i live a long way from the hospital I always went in a day before and left the day after so two whole nights in my bed. Three on one occasion when things when whatsits up the morning after.

  • I was told that GA is easier for the EP.

  • I wasn't given the option. I had to have sedation.when I asked I was told that it can be a long process and having G.A. for a long period of time comes with its own risks. As it happens I was so sedated that I can't remember moving a muscle! The procedure took 5 and a half hours so I would have been under G.A. for a long time. That said, if I have to have another I would be happy to have either....well, maybe "happy" is not quite the word I'm looking for.

  • Hope this helps.... My EP only does sedation he told me he likes the body to be as near as normal as possible GA tends to suppress a lot of things... Sedation was fine drifted in and out of consciousness listening to some very pleasant music from radio 2 playing in the background I was up and about after the compulsory couple of hours for bleeding etc only real side effects was a bad head and some flashing lights which lasted on and off for a few days then went (nothing a few headache tablets couldn't sort out).

    I have had a GA in the past for a different matter and ended up feeling like I had been a few rounds with Mike Tyson including being very sick it took weeks to get over it.

    I guess the human body is so complex and everyone is so different you can't really tell how you will react.

  • I had G.A, wasn't given options, but I was happy with that

  • Exactly the same as sports coach. Good luck x

  • I have had all 3 of mine with GA at EPs request. First was 7 1/2 hrs. Tomorrow having my 4th. Happy with GA especially for The TOE. The anaethetists skill is what keeps you from feeling crap afterwards.

  • With three ablation. a radical prostatectomy and a hernia repair in the last ten years I have had something like 18 hours GA in that time. Maybe that explains why my computer is dyslexic.

  • I had sedation with no problem but I was scheduled to have a GA. My EP asked everyone to go with a new procedure that his newly acquired anaethetist wanted to do. He explained that up until that time he had always used GA because there is a possibility that he has to stop the procedure I'd you move on the bed. The new anaethetist gave me some GA meds which partially paralysed me so I didn't move.

    My understanding is that not all anaesthetists are medically competent to use this technique or like using it. Lying still on a hard bed awake not moving unless well sedated would be a difficult feat. My guess is that your EP has had experience of sedation not working well so therefor wants to play safe,

  • I've had both, prefer GA because they did the TOE while I was under as well. Recovery time the same was out of hospital the day after.

  • I was awake for mine.I'm in the uk. I thought you had to be awake? So they can see the heart acting" normally"

  • I thought so too. I have a fear of getting put to sleep and the procedure is a 5 hr one so says my EP. I go back to see him on the 25th to let him know what I have decided. I would do it if they would just do the sedation.

  • I had a GA for mine, which is what I wanted. It all went well and I was happy not knowing anything about it. Im going in tomorrow for my second Ablation, and the only thing im looking forward to is not knowing anything!

  • Hope all goes smoothly, Swale. Second time is better because you know what to expect! All the best.

  • Some people like being put to sleep for that reason but I like to be aware and also when I have had GA before I felt terrible when I woke up. Headache and sore throat. Would rather be deeply sedated but guess if I want that will have to see a different EP as this one prefers GA. Thanks for replying.

  • Yes. Good luck.x

  • I had sedation for mine, was a bit weird and uncomfortable at first (not painful) , but they soon dosed me up with the sedation and think I fell asleep for an hour or so.

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