New to the AF experience

Was diagnosed with AF about three weeks ago. Very irregular erratic pulse and fluttering in the chest aptly described as a wet fish flopping around. Felt unwell. Was electrically cardioverted in emergency and had a drop in pulse rate and blood pressure afterward but back in sinus rythmn. Spent a couple days in hospital;. Put on Sotalol 80mg twice a day and rivaroxiban, blood thinner. Had my second attack a day ago, night again and went to emergency. IV Magnesium, IV fluids and Sotalol 80mg. Spontaneously reverted seven hours later. Have now had Sotalol upped to 120mg, hoping to control the events. Both times experienced copious urination.

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  • The urination is due to an enzyme that the distressed heart releases which tells the body to get rid of salt. Very common problem for AFers.

    Your worst risk of course is stroke which is why thankfully you have been put on anticoagulation so what you need to do now is find an Electrophysiologist and make an appointment to see him/her as these are the people who actually understand AF and other arrhythmias. You can find a list by area on the main AF Association website under patient information. If in UK you will need to get your GPs referral letter even if you go privately. A and E doctors, GPs and few cardiologists know enough to treat you the best way so an EP is vital if you want to move forward.

    It is also important with AF to become your own expert so read all the fact sheets available from AF-A as knowledge is power.

    Good luck and ask here if you have any specific questions and we will try to help

    Bob

  • thanks Bob for the info. Its certainly a learning curve, Have been to my GP this morn to have ECG to check QT interval with sotalol medication, asked doc about it, said it was associated with sudden death (Great).Thankfully alright. However he has told me no coffee, alcohol at all (bummer) low fat, low salt blah blah. Luckily I am encouraged to exercise so can keep up my zumba etc. Bit depressed about the whole thing as we want to go travelling and at moment I need to be near major hospital. I am in Queensland Australia. Do not have benefits so going public. I am doing plenty of research so will be an expert shortly. Will ask the cardiologist about EP when I see him on the 5th. Thankyou for your imput, I am finding it good to learn from people who have been suffering same complaint. Cheers Denny

  • Hi Denny, I am in Sydney but occasionally in Bris. I will send you my contact info offline - I was first diagnosed in Jan this year so just a few months ahead of your journey. Ric

  • Hi Bob I'm really interested in following up on the urination enzyme.Do you know what it's called?

    I haven't had a decent nights sleep since going into AF last year. I usually wake up several times, first time I take a leak then just drift off again but once I've had a few hours unbroken sleep I wake again and I'm busting for the loo even though I was empty. Almost like the more I sleep the more I need to urinate.

    I don't drink late in the evening and all my BP meds are taken in the morning.

    I was wondering if it's my heart struggling while I sleep and producing the enzyme you mentioned. It would also explain why I seem to wake for no reason no matter how tired I am.

    Make sense?

  • Sorry it has a three letter acronym but don 't recall what it is.

  • Taking magnesium tablets has improved my sleep and ability to go through the night without bathroom trips. It usually helps AF as well. Start on a low dose, as it may cause diarrhea initially.

  • AF can be a bit tedious to have, Denny, but it does encourage us to adopt a healthy lifestyle! It can be scary too but most of us soon get to know what best controls it and episodes seem much less bothersome. Although it tends to progress as we get older, I think many of us on the forum are much more on top of our AF than we were when we were first diagnosed. There are lots of ways to improve one's situation and it need not be the millstone it seems at first to be.

  • Denny;

    I also experience having excess urination; sometimes in evening ( going every 15 mins. and sometime 3 or more times at night. Before I was diagnosed and put on meds 3 years ago, this would happen during the night and I would faint in AM.

    I'm having an ablation, probably cyroablation in a couple of weeks. Hope that it takes this symptom away as I no longer go out much in evenings as I don't know if I will spend most of my time in bathroom.

    Heather R

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