Dreaded depression

I'm 3 months post ablation....heart behaving but I hav sunk into depression with awful anxiety. I had problems eating for 3 months and my mood went down the tubes. Now I'm being treated for depression and still worry about the afib. This year has been the worst........does anyone else out there suffer with clinical depression and anxiety? I feel so very alone......if you haven't felt depression you don't know how dark it can be.

20 Replies

  • Yes I have had depression on and off through my life. I never hesitate to get meds ( citalopram works for me) when I feel it coming on. Sorry you're having a bad time. Anxiety as well is the deepest misery, I know. I m in my 70 s now and depressions are much milder. Also infrequent. I ve learnt to anticipate and get treatment immediately. Probably useless advice for you now, but just wanted you to know it does lift, and you are not alone. JanR

  • Jan, I feel so anxious. It is scary and very unsettling. Hard to function. Waiting for new anti depression to work. I know it takes time but this is horrid. It really helps to hear from others. I'm trying not to each for the klonipin or adivan since in the long run the benzos only make it worse. But I sure could use some relief. Thank you for responding...please stay in touch.

  • Jan you too live across the pond from me in USA? Wish I lived closer to you all.......it sure would be wonderful to find an anxiety support group face to face. I thank God for this forum though........there is nothing better than support except for an adivan and I'm off those!!!!!

  • Yes I m in the south west of England. But we have this forum to chat and share on. You can see from the replies how much we understand and support one another. Good suggestions too. Ultimately, time is the healer for depression, though during my first and worst, I prayed to God for release, in desperation, and I was immediately lifted right out of it. That was a special blessing and it never happened again. Well, not so dramatically. keep in touch and tell us how you're getting on. Jan

  • Hi

    I've had two ablations for Svt since September my last the 2nd November.

    My heart is behaving although I'm constantly monitoring it and worrying as a normal heart beat is just as strange!

    I had called my cardiologist week five to say how awful I felt. Sick, dizzy with palpitations, can't eat trouble sleeping felt like the symptoms of past.

    He said my ablation had not worked again and sent me to get echo monitor which I had on for 72 hours.

    Result is my heart beat was fine and only showed my ectopics which are unpleasant other than that fine. Rate between 60-100.

    He said anxiety and I was relieved to hear it but still scared.

    I'm so worried that the Svt will come back in scared of everything including laughing and crying. I constantly think about it and what I'm doing eating etc it is just awful.

    The doctor gave me citalapram and diazepam to take but I am even too scared to take them as I fear they will set me off.

    I am still on 2.5mg beta blocker as cardiologist said it helps my heart rate stay low with the anxiety.

    I'm really trying to fight back and work out if it's my ectopics, my side effects of beta blocker or my anxiety that is causing this all or if it's all three.

    I guess after all we've been through its no wonder we are anxious I'm hooping that given time everything will settle down. I wake each morning with palpitations and feel awful usually by about 4pm I'm feeling a bit better.

    Feel free to msg me anytime. I think there is a lot of people who suffer anxiety before, during and after treatment. You are not alone xx

  • Omg Devine I could have written your response. I feel EXACTLY how you do. I'm trying to get through this horrible anxiety today.......I woke up fine and then it got its grip on me. Not sure if I should take my pip beta blocker or just white knuckle through. My doctor has me on antidepressant that is supposed to be very good for anxiety but says it's too early to know if it has started to work as I'm slowly increasing the dose over time. Do you too live in across the pond as they say? I live in USA ....wish we could have more contact. I'm very much scared and need support as I see you do too. Please let's stay in touch........are there additional other ways to contact? Believe me I feel your pain. Xx

  • I live in the uk in Scotland if you pm me I'll send you my email address if you like? It's hard to know what to do to make us better. Take the pill, don't take the pill fight it or don't fight it. I'm giving it my best shot and am awaiting news of cbt councelling and I think if this goes on I will end up taking the anxiety meds I just don't want to over load my system so soon after all the trauma of the last few months not to mention years! We need to accept it will take time.. Small steps and we will get there! I think we expect to wake up after ablation fighting fit and normal again. I was told I'd be running marathons and be symptom and drug free after my first one and two ablates later no marathon entry! No wonder we have anxiety.

  • Don't know how to private message.......???????

  • I feel for you. I have suffered with depression twice and anxiety for over ten years.

    Have you seen a GP about it? Been offered any medication or maybe CBT?

    I actually found that Kalms helped to take the edge off as well as hot baths with essential oils like lavendar and ylang ylang.

    I'm almost anxiety free these days, even with AF. The two things that helped me the most were a book called "At Last A Life" and a course in mindfulness. You should definitely look that book up as it's brilliant for anxiety.

  • I will definitely look for that book. Thanks so much for your thoughtful words.

  • I think I had depression in the early days of AF.....I hit it with every non-drug remedy I could think of including: more countryside walks, a new hobby, less work, no negative stuff from family or on TV after 6pm, music is great I love early 70's blues/rock, mindfulness, physically writing down every evening the top 4 things to be grateful for each day and last but not least prayer.

    It worked. Hope there's something there for you.

  • There is a ver real connection between heart problems and depression/anxiety....a very strong mind/body relationship that is observed time and time again by the health care world. I have a friend who is a physician and she told me that when she was doing a residency at a big hospital, there was a psychiatrist on staff that only dealt with heart patients. It's that common. She said that people with kidney problems, liver disease, etc. don't have the intense emotional response that is seen with heart issues, from heart surgery to arrhythmias. I would imagine some people are more "hard wired" to experience more of this than others, but know as awful as it is, that it is "normal". I am right there with you. I had an ablation two months ago, and although I realize that it takes at least three months to heal, I have been on Flecainide since the day after the ablation and every time I am even late on a dose, I have palpitations. I feel pretty certain that the ablation hasn't touched my problem and I can either live with being on drugs or do another ablation. Depressing! But there is another layer beyond just disappointment and that is true depression/anxiety that just feeds off of the heart issues. Get support where ever you can...here, from health care professionals, from medication, alternative medicine...where ever. But know that it is very very common and that you are not alone.

  • Yes canyon sister you said it all. I am just learning about the heart/depression link. I'm one of those wired for anxiety and depression and it took my afib and the ablation and the ensuing issues to catapult me into a depression. I really apprepreciate your normalizing this and what you posted is so true. My EP wanted me on flecinide for 5 months after the ablation. I had already been on it 3 months prior. It made me so sick I eventually stopped eating. Went off a month after ablation and now am 3 months post without it. Am holding my breath so to speak as I get palpatations and fast beats but it's a healing heart so to e expected. This forum convinces one that one ablation is NEVER enough but I hear differently from my doctors and I pray they can be right. If I have to have a 2nd I will but here's hoping not. Stay in touch! I hear you! Where are you from?

  • I'm in Arizona...yes, stay in touch. I tolerate Flec fairly well and it works at 100mg twice a day, but it has given me some lung problems...coughing and wheezing. Did you have A fib?

  • Funny I thought you were from the states too.........yes afib. I want to say it's in the past. However still have the irregular beats and weird "stuff" going on.........sometimes the heart is as peaceful as a sleeping baby. Other times no. Still healing I'm trying to believe. It will be 3 months December 22. I don't know how to private message as in email but if you would like you can invite me if you know how.

  • I don't know how either but if I figure it out, I'll let you know. I'll be at three months post ablation on Jan 20th...

  • I'm one month ahead of you canyon sister.....good luck to us both! Hey try to figure that email private thing out ok? Lol......I could not for the life of me. Maybe bob or kodaska could Tudor us. The site directions did not help me. Duh........

  • Hey canyon sister......did you try to pm me????

  • I don't want to come across as harsh, but ...

    With the exception of genetically-determined mental health issues, stress and anxiety come from between our ears, and so do the means of settling them.

    Pay attention to what's happening, including your emotions. Make notes so you can keep track.

    In particular, note each emotion you feel and how long it lasts.

    I'm serious!

    You will find that they don't last long.

    You will also find that whatever condition is bothering you, it hasn't killed you, since you're making notes about it.

    In time, you'll see patterns in both your physical and emotional experiences. That information will enable you to anticipate and cope much better than when you're sitting in a dark vacuum chamber with no perspective but fear.

    Meditation stabilizes the mind. Mindfulness extends the practice to daily life. Find a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program and participate. You will find some pretty amazing tools, and the biggest surprise will be that they're in the same place the anxiety comes from - between your ears.

    You didn't ask, but I'd like to offer a few resources if you're interested in pursuing this path.



    I have a few on my website as well. The items by Kristin Neff and Tara Brach are particularly good.


    Best of luck!


  • Thanks for the sites....excellent resources! I get it. I do......

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