Long story short: diagnosed paroxysmal AF in 2000 (48 year old, fir etc); treated with sotolol; minor stroke 2007, anticoagulants not prescribed; second minor stroke 2010, anticoagulants commenced; persistent AF 2014, treated with cardioversion (DCRx2) and drugs (calcium channel blockers etc), unsuccessful; first ablation early 2015, paroxysmal AF redeveloped DCR unsuccessful; second ablation early 2015; return to paroxysmal AF then persistent AF over next few months, DCR unsuccessful.
So now in persistent AF, feel very ordinary. The EP cardiologist assures me that checks during ablation procedures confirm that the pulmonary veins have been electrically isolated from the atria. So, it is likely that the source of the problem is elsewhere. Now I'm waiting for a referral to a cardiothoracic surgeon to investigate a modified maze procedure. Not sure that I am ready for a trans-sternal entry and long recovery so thinking about a more minimally invasive approach.
Not sure what the message is here but thought the story might be useful to someone.