numb hands

Hi all l haven't posted for quite a while but read posts most days and they has been very helpful over the years, l have had AF since 2010 had ablation in 2012 and have been in SR since but have not been able to come off flecainide 100m twice a day plus nebivolol 2.5 once a day also l am on warfarin as each time l tried coming off the thumping heart beat and dizziness came back, my question is about 3 or 4 times a week l wake up with a numb hand some times right some times left, has any one had the same problem don't know if its the AF or side effects from tablets, haven't seen a doctor for about 2 years, apart from this l am feeling very well for my age and have got a big birthday this year 80 oh dear !!!

25 Replies

  • Hi Bunnyblue, can I jump in and be the first to wish you Happy Birthday!

    I think the numbness could be the Flecainide. I am on the same dose and sometimes wake up with the same. I just exercise it as soon as I feel it.

  • could be the Flec - have had that when on pill in the pocket 300 mg - take it the ablation was not successful ? - would they / you consider another go ?

  • Agree, most likely the Flec - numbness in the peripheral regions such as hands and feet are a well known side effect - I would suggest you go talk to your Doctor as soon as possible.

  • Thanks every one for your advice made me feel better to think its the flec l will make a appointment to talk to my doctor expect l will have to wait about 6 weeks to get one!!

  • Do you mean wait 6 weeks to see your GP bunnyblue? I hope not. That sounds like 'the dark ages'.

  • can be unless its an emergency

  • Well, I do know waiting times vary from district district but I have never heard of a 6 weeks wait. time to see a GP. i would find a 6 week wait very worrying.Why don't you ask at your practice why the wait is so long?I looked on line and it seems that in 2014 the wait. time was 4 out of 10 people waited about 2 weeks and the rest waited a week or less.You do need to ask.

  • A Very Happy 8oth Birthday when it comes,great achievement ,keep well and happy.

    Best Wishes,


  • I'm glad you posted this as I have also been on Flec for 8years or so and recently noticed the numb fingers/hands in the morning when I wake up, I did wonder if it was the meds. Mentioned it to my GP who sent me for a neck scan??

  • Just to confuse matters not only does flecainide cause numbness in hands and feet but so does Bisoprolol and also AF itself (though I suspect this only applies to those in persistent /permanent AF and also those who are in paroxysmal AF for an extended period.

  • HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I have been on flecainide since 2003. 50mg three times a day. I am nearly 68 now. I also suffer with muscle aches and pains but because I suffer with arthritis anyway, I expect the flecainide and my other meds makes me worse. I was offered ablation at one stage but they now say it doesnt always work and as a couple of people I know had it done and it didnt work I am definately put off by that. I would hate to be awake during the procedure!! Surgeon said that to go ahead with this you have to be really sure you want to or they wont do it anyway.

  • Hmmmmm, I didn't want it but I was pressed to have it! The circumstances were probably different as I was told the alternative was a pacemaker and possibly some evil medication, however a friend told me her doctor, who had had several ablations himself, put her off having one. I think many people like you who have had AF for a long time have 'missed the boat' for an ablation because they have developed other problems as well.

  • I had AF for years, I was told by cardiologist ablation probably would not work. EP thought otherwise, and he was right. I had to have 3 to keep me free of AF.

  • I have numbness in thighs, hand and feet. Permanent AF, but not on Flec. Digoxin, Pradaxa and Bisprolol is my magic mix. In fact as I type this my fingers are numb!! I just put it down everything that is going on inside me.....I am getting a 24 hour holter tomorrow. Let's see what that brings..

  • Ok, wore the holter for 24 hours, and guess what. No palpitations, no breathlessness, no nausea, and other than a short spell of finger tip numbness, my diary remained blank. Handed it back in this morning, to be told 3 weeks for result. Mmmmmm....Sod's law on the symptoms though. Another point, I had full bloods last week. One specific I asked for was a magnesium check. This given the amount of Digoxin I take on a daily basis, a known weakener of magnesium levels in body. All was fine though, however, I have been taking Epsom Salt baths, and a skin spray magnesium oil. Wonder if this has brought my mag level up?

  • The nebivolol can also cause the numbness. My hands and feet are effected by it. My finger ends turn blue and I lose the feeling in them. Side effects of nebivolol can be made worse if you take supplements such as a multivitamin or Q10.

  • Hmmm.....I've got persistent fingertip numbness which comes on with cold occasionally (thyroid tested and OK). I wake up with numbness very often in my hands and sometimes up to elbow - which corrects itself with pins and needles type sensations when I start moving around, but doesn't seem to be related to leaning on my arm / so called "dead arm."

    I'm not on any meds at all but have a pacemaker which shows that my heart slows a great deal at night and my ventricular function also needs assistance at this time. Assume that the reaction is due to this in my case. Imagine that heart meds which can cause arrhythmia and slowed heart beat could do the same thing.

    My husband who was on 2 x meds for high BP (amlodipine/ramipril) has just had an alphablocker added to the mix and he gets numb hands on waking too.

    I'd get it checked out.

  • Bunnyblue,

    Not sure why yur on blood thinner. Unless there's other medical issues, and yur not going in and out of Afib, I really see no need to take blood thinner. I'd get a 2nd opinion. As for numb hands, I get that too. I've had afib since 2000 with only 3 episodes of it during that whole time. Been on flec for about 4 years now. Quinidine and betapace b4 flec. Quinidine killing too many people and betapace crashing my blood pressure. The only time I took rat poison which is what cummiden is, was when I first got afib. I had been in it for about 5 days. So the cardio doc put me on it for 30 days b4 converting me. Back to numbness. You probably have some sort of spine issue or shoulder issue of some sort. Something is probably getting pinched at night. Ever since I had bone spurs in my shoulder grinded down, if I sleep on my back, my hand will go numb ocassionally. Hope this helps. MrBill

  • Many EPs believe that once you have had AF then you must take an anticoagulant because the risk does not go away. One of a number of reasons is that the heart changes shape and also functionality. Also even if you have symptomatic paroxysmal AF you may be ALSO getting asymptomatic AF episodes particularly during the night and also in the day. See cardiologist's response to one of my responses when I said this (in more detail). Also see Dr Sanjay Gupta's video (link posted on HUL within the last two weeks. As I understand it there is no definitive research one way or the other.

  • There's so much the health industry does not know about AF. I guess maybe I should clarify my comments. Barring any other health issues, the protocal on administering blood thinners and afib is to convert 24 hours within onset of very first afib event. There is absolutely no way the blood can start clotting and cause a stroke in that short a time. I suppose that only applies to people who can detect afib. The few times I've gone into it, I know absolutely 100% I'm in it. Lots of people can't detect it. If one is constantly in and out of it, or in it all the time, then yes, you need to prevent clotting from happening. So if a person has very few episodes of afib like myself, there's really no chance of clotting since it can only happen when in afib. The blood pools in the upper chambers if they're in afib. If the atrial chambers start pumping again, then its a problem since the pooled blood has had a chance to start clotting. I've had 3 attacks and have had 3 different cardio docs tell me there is no need for anticoagulents. Blood thinnner has dangers in and by itself. No sense introducing more potential life threatening drugs. Hopefully, you'll never be in a bad car wreck. Hard to stop the bleeding if you've been on blood thinners. That's just one bad side of taking blood thinners. I am fully aware that afib is the leading cause of stroke but stop and think logically why that is. I believe that its due to people, especially older people who can't detect that they're in afib, who go in and out of it all the time. They might go into it at the beginning of a week, stay in it for a month, then their heart converts and whammo!!!! I should also add one more caveot. Being a commercial pilot, the FAA required me to get a 24 hr holter every 12 months and a letter from the doc that I'm fine and have had no afib events. Flying a plane full of people over the ocean, you can be darned sure, I wouldn't jeapordize the lives of everyone on board and not tell my doc I've had this or that. The 24 monitor will also show if I've had any events at night which of course I never did have. For folks like me with lone occasional afib and continual monitoring every 12 months, its really not a big deal. I do take flec to prevent any hiccups in my heart. I know if I didn't, I would experience attacks all the time. Hope this clarifies what I posted earlier. Bill

  • You will find that the protocols and the advice on AF is very different in the US than in Europe (UK in our case). - just look at the difference in advice between AFA UK & USA websites - US still recommends asprin which was removed from NICE UK site as being ineffective.

    The leading EP in this country - Prof Schilling - posted a YouTube video lecturing medical practioners on treatment of AF - 1st - offer anti-coagulants........... The view here is contrary to the view you have expressed in this post.

    I think the consensus of opinion is that Europe leads the way as far as AF healthcare is concerned (provocative I know) - tongue in cheek! Having said that, every EP seems to have their own way of doing things.

    Personally - I never had a cardioversion nor was ever offered it - despite a few blue light rides into A&E and a 3 day stay in acute coronary with lone AF - very low BP and very fast AF. But I have had 2 RF ablations - 2013 & 2014.

    Incidentally - anti-coagulants do not 'thin' the blood and the NOACs mean Wafarin is no longer the only choice.

  • Yes. On 1.25 bisoprolol. Wake up in mornings with one or both hands numb until I get moving.

  • Thanks everyone for all your advice

  • I'm on a mix of digoxin, dabigatran, bisoprolol, atorvastatin and amlodipine...a pacemaker, 3 ablations and a few cardioversions.....I have regular episodes of numb fingers (no blueness), usually when I wake up, but sometimes when I writing etc. Usually goes when I hang my arms down. Sometimes wonder whether it'll do damage to my capilliaries in my fingers over time...don't know. Doesn't bother me much otherwise. Another thing is that I am usually cold in the office while everyone else is sweltering. I'm 58 in April.

  • Numbness could be caused by nerve or circulation issues. Vitamin E sometimes helps circulation issues. It did for me. I am not sure how vitamin E supplements may interact with your medications.

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