Not posted before, but just thought I'd relay my experiences following an ablation last Thursday (one week ago) at Nottingham City Hospital in case anyone is considering the procedure.
Early days yet, but feeling very good with no AF syptoms. So far just the odd flip and blip, but nothing alarming. I have got what feels like the start of a chest infection in terms of irritation in esophagus, but I understand this can be tissue damage from the ablation balloon in the neighbouring section of the heart?
Have been for several walks and managed a ten mile bike ride yesterday and felt fine. Reading the forum today I realise I should maybe be taking things a bit easier, but when you feel fine its hard to not try testing yourself a bit. Meant to be off skiing this time next week, so keen to know where I stand (or not as the case may be).
I had been referred by my Arhthymia nurse Ellen Berry who is lovely, very supportive and informative in the lead up. Had the procedure at Cardiac short stay unit and everyone was absolutely great. Very professional and attentive, and just nice folk to be around when you're naturally feeling a bit anxious. My EP consultant was Tim Robinson, who again was lovely, very assured and reassuring and clearly a thoroughly nice man. Likewise the staff in the Cath lab and the prep room all extremely reassuring and pleasant.
I went in at 8am, went for the procedure around 11.30 and back on the ward by 2pm. They do have to shave one side of the groin for inserting the catheter and I hadn't been told this at the pre-op (or I hadn't listened properly). I was very violently sick on the Thursday at teatime, but understand nausea is quite common. Got discharged about 11.30 am on the Friday.
I had the procedure under sedation rather than a general, and didn't have any pain, didn't feel any panic etc. It was very interesting to see what went on. A little disconcerting when they manipulate the diaphragm to check no phrenic nerve damage, but no pain other than slight discomfort when they go into the groin. I'd say mild in comparison with a filling at the dentists (but then I'm not good at the dentist).
I'd take some ear plugs for sleeping on the ward. Got discharged with a course of Lanzoprazole to settle stomach, low dose of a beta blocker (Bisoprolol), and Clexane injections whilst reloading on Warfarin.
All in all, and daft as it sounds, a very pleasant experience. Met some lovely people, felt in good hands and just glad to have got it done. Thumbs up for the NHS!