AF Association
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Cardiologist consultation

This morning I saw my cardiologist at last! I was very nervous as he seemed rather brusque last time we met but turns out he is just a bit hyper.

He was delighted with the Alivecor printouts - I took three, two with AF and one with long pauses. He said they were really good and showed just what he needed to know. When he saw me in hospital I had tachycardia at the time so he had not seen an AF printout (it was lost....)

He gave me three choices

1 Try reducing the Diltiazem because the dose I am on is slowing me down generally, but then I may not be having enough to prevent tachycardia.

2 Have a pacemaker fitted to stop my heart slowing down too much but then I would still have to take meds for the AF and tachycardia.

3 Be referred to an EP with a view to having an ablation for the AF which might include fixing the tachycardia.

His advice was to have the ablation if possible/suitable but in any case to go for the consultation. I have a choice of Bristol or Harefield, Harefield has the shorter waiting list so I've chosen it, also near two of my daughters and then there is the snob factor 😉 I will be seeing David Jones who will probably phone me first.

I'm not keen on the ablation idea. I had an operation which was supposed to be a quick fix and not only did I not have the condition that was diagnosed but I was left with permanent after effects. That has made me very cautious especially when a procedure is billed as 'brilliant'.

I'm thinking I might opt for one ablation if offered but if that is not successful I'd fall back on the pacemaker though I'm sure I'll be told that is a wimpy idea!

Finally, Alivecor has proved its value I think. How many hours and tests might it have taken to get that evidence? I reckon I have saved the NHS hundreds if not thousands of pounds!

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Alivecor is great when you are trying to get a proper diagnosis. My problem is when people are always on it as I feel it concentrates the mind on AF not getting on with life!

Ablation may well improve QOL but don't give up on one. Pacemaker and AV node ablation is much more final and a PM alone will do nothing to stop AF

Harefield is part of the Royal Brompton Group so well respected.


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