AF Association
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3rd Ablation

Saw EP/cardiology consultant yesterday following return to AF in February, having had normal sinus rhythm since 2nd ablation last July.

He was surprised at the sudden relapse but impressed with the huge increased quality of life I'd gained.

He feels a third ablation is worth a try, and after long discussion agreed to this. I know some of you have had three - would be interested to know of your experiences, good or poor outcomes.

Thanks, Bev.

18 Replies

Yes I had three, 2006 7 and 8, First never worked and in fact made me a bit worse. Second worked for 8 months and then started getting beakthrough so third sorted me and no AF since. Still get a few short runs of tachycardia and ectopics but 99% good if not more. .

Go for it


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Thanks Bob , certainly remembered you'd had 3 but didn't realise you'd had several years of a pretty good outcome long term (May it continue!).

Cheers, Bev :-)


I think that you encouraged me re my first (which I have yet to have) so I will do the same for you on your 3rd!! The main thing is that you now have a better quality of life than you had!!


Hi Peter, things were great until the relapse into AF but since have been pretty vile! Worse than before until given Digoxin got first time (plus back to 10mg Bisoprolol and high doses of 2 anti hypertensives which are due to very high BP due to chronic kidney disease).

It's so worth me going through the 3rd ablation if could get back even a few months of being breathless only when exercising (running, cycling, rowing, swimming), because at some point in not too distant future I face removal of both kidneys and dialysis! As my cardiologist says, I'm complex case as antiocoagulation is a problem due to bleeding into my kidneys etc .

But, need to do this!!

Thanks for reply & hope your first went/goes well!

(Sorry, need to catch up!).

Best, Bev :-)


I had guessed that you had been pretty bad as you had not been on the posts.

Well I haven't had my first yet and not sure exactly when. I went to Barts last Wednesday to see the cardiac nurse and they had wanted to ablate me on Mon 30 Mar. However, my consultant EP had said that he wanted me on Amiodarone for a month beforehand CA so that timescale does not work!!! Cardiac nurse is contacting ERP to see what to do. However, an added complication that I had to tell them about is my liver. The blood tests that my GP arranged show that liver function is out (ALT levels almost 4 times what they were in September and 2.4 times the max and Gama GT level doubled). Not that I really know what that means except significant liver problems!!! Also serum potassium has gone high and no thyroid test was done. I have to go to GP on Wednesday and then re-contact EP. I bought a oximeter last weekend (Dr said to) and my SpO2 levels been mostly low (most 89% to 95% though has hit 98%) since. That will be contributing to my lethargy and headiness for sure!! Yesterday was a bad day - but my bad days are obviously no where near as bad as your bad days.


Hi Peter, well for my second ablation my EP wanted me on Amioderone as he thought it would be a better outcome. It certainly was successful in controlling my AF even prior to the ablation but 3 months post ablation (6 months on it) I had to come off due to side effects. Takes a while to get out of system do could be reason back in AF. This 3rd ablation I'm not advised to go on it.

Everyone is different and it might suit you very well. Good wishes for outcome - I reckon it's probably well backed by research that such a drug improves outcomes, so I'd go with it. It sure gave me several months without AF and such improved quality of life!

All the best



Thanks Bev. When I had echo last September the EP consultant was keen to get the heart back into Sinus rhythm for two months to see if the (minor?) changes in size on the atrium and one of the ventricles and a leaking mitral valve are caused by the AF or are contributing to the AF (shortened explanations and symptoms) and so he could do further tests and work out a plan forward. Obviously the CV did not achieve that. I am guessing that is why he is keen on me having the Amiodarone on the first CA. At last consultation he said Amiodarone significantly increases chances of holding in SR [ie for longer]. Still a waiting game!!!



It has been confirmed that I will be having my ablation on Monday 30 March as the consultant does not want to put the CA back until such time as my liver function returns to normal and then to take Amiodarone for a month beforehand. I have been taken off the simvastatin and won't be starting the Amiodarone. However my SpO2 levels are consistently still low. When in GP's surgery this am it was actually 93% (and hands were warm) so she saw for herself!! Thinks I may have sleep apnoea as well.

Cardiac nurse has told me that even though INR is fluctuating so much (between 1.8 and 4.4 and 0.5mg changes in warfarin) that will not be a problem as they will manage it during and after CA. Told as it has not settled after 10 weeks unlikely to now.

However your problems with your kidneys , etc are much more severe and difficult. Good luck.


Certainly complicated with the kidney disease. How did that happen?

Good luck with next ablation.


Oh the kidney thing is genetic - Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) and recently read there is sons evidence of connection with this and AF! Well, kidneys play big part in BP Control and hypertension can trigger AF.

Main issue now for me is 'choice' of stroke risk because antiocoagulants which are contraindicated dud to potential and current bleeding of kidney cysts & risk of serious haemorrhage. Especially as very problematic to get stable INR.

I'm a pain for all my medics!! :-/


Hope you have enough family and friend support and understanding. It is fine being strong but sometimes........


I agree, but not great asking for support and don't think many people really understand my conditions. :-/


Well you've got my support, good luck Bev☺


I think that both of your statements are so true indeed.

Quite a few people seem to think that with AF you are "not ill at all" and there is little wrong!!! Maybe I should try being less positive and not smiling. I am sure if I was limping with a bad knee the situation would be perceived differently even though that could be a very minor complaint - but it would be visible!!!


Good luck Bev with your 3rd ablation, I hope all goes well and your AF free for good.



Thanks so much for your good wishes!

Bev :-)


Hi Bev. It is disappointing when an ablation doesn't quite do the job isn't it? I have had 3 ablations in less than two years and the third was not the solution we had all hoped for. I can have a 4th but my EP says that after 3 ablations there are diminishing returns with successive procedures. I am at least now only on 200 mg of Diltiazem plus BP and statin and warfarin meds. am now in a better position to have a hip replacement and will revisit the next step with my EP after that operation. Even though the 3rd ablation wasn't the final fix I do feel my quality of life is still improved from the 2nd one. My EP and I want to delay the pace and ablate for as long as possible. There are new research projects on the go all the time and something might well turn up to help us all. Anne


Just did a long (too long? Ha) reply and it's disappeared!

I'll try later thanks for reply .



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