AF Association
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I don't know where to start!


I have been looking on here for a few weeks since my GP mentioned that I may have a heart rhythm problem. I have been ill on and off since May and I am still baffling the Drs.

I was diagnosed with Asthma a few years ago but none of the meds really worked. My breathing got a lot worse this year and I suddenly started getting extremely tired, I couldn't get through a normal at all. I was given steroids and things got worse. I was having palpitations for hours that were keeping me awake and my breathing got worse. I had an ambulance out and none of the asthma meds worked but my ECG was abnormal. I was taken off of the steroids as I have tachycardia and I seemed to slowly get better. I went back to working out 5 times a week etc. Chest x-ray came back clear.

About 6 weeks ago, my breathing gets bad again and i'm exhausted again . Now this only normally happens in the summer months which is why they thought it was asthma. I had changed GP's and this one took it very seriously. I've had bloods, all normal, another chest x-ray and a r-test which I am still waiting for the results for. Then the palpitations start again, nearly every night and usually at night, as well as a few odd beats. Does this sound anything like anyone else has experienced? Add to the mix now that I keep getting weak and shaky and that can go on for hours too. It has really affected my whole life and it's clearly not going away.

6 Replies

YES! Those are exactly the symptoms I had before I was diagnosed with PAF, similar scenario too. I gave up when my GP asked me if I was having mental problems. Eventually it was 'caught' and I had treatment.

I'm not saying that is your problem but I'm glad you have a good GP and I'm sure he will get to the bottom of things. I'm beginning to sound like an Alivecor salesman but it could be very helpful to have one. If you search for Alivecor on the site you'll find lots of info.

By the way I reread your post and caught the words 'working out' this time. Maybe you should give that a break even if you feel better until you know more?

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Ask your GP to refer you to an electrophysiologist (EP) for tests and reviews. That way things will start moving and in the long run will save a lot of duplicate testings. An EP is a cardiac consultant who specialises in heart rhythms ie they are the electricians of the heart.

Look at the main AFA website because there is loads of good information there. They also have a list of specialists and you want to filter on those who perform ablations and you will see what hospitals near you have this. Be warned that many hospitals do not have these facilities as it is specialised. Hence getting referred to an EP now.


That sounds like classic PAF, and it replicates to the letter how I felt, and the lead up to my diagnosis. You do not state age, I am 58, long time gym and yoga fanatic. This totally floored me. I actually ended up very ill. So, Peterw is correct. Straight to an EP, read all you can on this forum, and very good luck.....

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Saying the same as Peter and Max, go see a Heart Rhythm Specialist/EP. They are the experts. I got a referral direct from my GP to an EP of my choice. I also went private for an initial consultation to save time as I had been ill for a year, and getting nowhere slowly!!! That cost about £150-250 and the result in my case was that I quickly got put on drugs that worked. I also had an ablation on the NHS which came from that consultation. Doesn't need to be private but can save time if you're desperate.



You may also like to see a respiratory consultant to check for pulmonary hypertension that can cause AF and classically causes breathing problems. They should do a CT to rule out fibrosis and then another one with a dye that will be looking for embolisms.

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Hi everyone,

Thank you all for replying to me and making me feel like I'm not crazy! Stress was enquired about but I'm a qualified counsellor who treats people for anxiety and stress, so it would be worrying if I wasn't able to recognise that in myself.

The R-test results aren't back yet but after having a look around, I tried the cardiograph app and I haven't got a fast heart rate at all, just an irregular one! So if there is something wrong, it's not AF but by the looks of it.

If the r-test comes back as normal, I'm being referred to respiratory medicine at the hospital as, presumably, most problems would show up on a r-test.

I'm 31 by the way.

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