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AF Association
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Concerned about procedure

Hello...I have not posted for awhile but I do have a concern about having a colonoscopy. I had one 10 years ago and now (in the USA) I am due for another at 62. I was diagnosed with AFib a year ago. I am one that does not feel any abnormal heartbeats. The doctors found the irregularity ONCE and after other tests and a 2 week monitor...nothing. I am on medication for my high blood pressure, metroprolol for the irregular heartbeat, and Xarelto.

My concern is

1. I assume I stop taking the Xarelto a few days before the procedure.

2. Since you have to "cleanse" before this and not have anything in their stomach, has anyone taken their other medication the day of the procedure...I am concerned "being put out" and not having the metroprolol or blood pressure to control those issues.

and 3. Just concerned in general about having a procedure done having AFIB.

Any words of wisdom would help.



10 Replies

You will doubtless have a pre op assessment at which you will be told when to stop the xarelto but probably only a day or so prior. You need to ask then about you other medication. Rest assured that you will be well looked after in any eventuality so try not to worry.


When I had both my colonoscopies a (the last one about 2 years ago) there was no pre-procedure assessment as such but just a few questions beforehand on the day. However I seem to recall that on the notification form that they gave a number to phone if you had conditions or medication.


Hi Barb, as Bob says you will have a pre op assessment and you can share your concerns there and they will tell you about your meds etc. I have regular 3 year colonoscopy so had 3 since onset of afib. Last 2 I was taking aspirin and had to stop that day before but my other meds I carried on taking and had no problem whatsoever. Here we have them done awake and your just given a mild sedative. I had pet hardens and felt quite at home with the fairies as they


Sorry, finger slipped.

I had pethadin and was quite happy with the fairies. No problems or ill effects.

If you are having yours under a general the. You will be monitored all the time and if blood pressure or anything alters the experts are there and will deal with it immediately.

I wish you well let us know how it goes for you.

Take care

Frances x


I had a colonoscopy and had the same concerns - I told them there was a chance that I would go into fibrillation during the procedure. Nothing happened, it went fine. Best wishes for the procedure.


Hi Barb. I had a coloscopy 3 weeks ago. I stopped warfarin 5 days before the procedure. I took the cleansing laxative the day before the procedure and by the morning the effects of this had worn off. I took my regular meds (bisoprolol, thyroxine and omeprazole) on the morning of coloscopy. Hope this helps. Good luck and very best wishes. Susan.


I had one a couple of months ago. I was told not to stop warfarin so stayed on it. I am not on any other meds. I was given mild sedation and all went well. So I am ßure you will be fine. Ask doctor about meds and good luck


I suggest that you find out what the "colonoscopy team" are proposing and then check that with your EP. Unfortunately non EPs very often put old or unnecessary restrictions on things because anticoagulation is not their specialist area and in addition there are the additional factors from AF.


I had to do a colonoscopy and I also have AFIB. I had the colonoscopy to check out my stomach woes and if in fact it was IBS. (Of course there is no relationship with colonoscopy and IBS.). Colonoscopy is a pretty simple procedure and I would not have thought you need to stop the Xarelto as little risk of bleeding , from memory I did not but really cannot remember now. Just ask your Doctor. I would have no concerns at all about this procedure and the fact you have AFIB and I am sure your doctor will tell you the same. I recently had other surgery and stopped Xarelto for over a week. I am back on it now.


Thanks everyone for the replies. I do not remember from 10 years ago that there is any pre-op assessment here. I may be able to talk to a nurse on the phone before if I am lucky. I will let you know how it goes.


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