Newbie and a bit scared

Hello all.  I am an otherwise fit and active 49 yo woman and have been diagnosed (yesterday!) with a-fiib.  Episodes lasting a few minutes up to couple hours happenin sporadically although most daya I have at least one episode.

Seeing cardiac doc again next week for meds etc.   He has said beta blockers for definite plus possibly blood thinner depending on discussion.  

I have 7 year old twins so really need to be around and at full health for quite some time to come!

Main worry right now is that my chest is sore right over my heart.   Not tight not short of breath and not getting any worse.  Does anyone else have this?  I get it after v bad attack - like my heart is bruised almost.   Hope this makes sense?! 

Would also love to hear from anyone of similar age with a fib - how are you coping?


8 Replies

  • Welcome to the club Ahab and I'm sure others will respond closer to your age. I just wanted to say that AF won't kill you although it may feel that way sometimes. You will learn to live with it and the first job is to learn all you can about the condition. Go to AF Association main website and read all you can as knowledge is power.

    If you are in UK , NICE guidelines are that you should be referred to a specialist within one month so I hope that works for you. Hopefully you will have an echocardiogram to check that there are no other problems with your heart as well as various blood tests to look for anything like Thyroid imbalance.

    Anticoagulants (not blood thinners please as they don't  ) may be needed depending on your other health issues as AF makes us five times more at risk of stroke so  do have that discussion based on facts not fear and again look up this on AF-A site.

    This is a very scary time for you and most people do get quite anxious when told there is something wrong with their heart but life will go on, just a little differently in some cases.

    Ask anything and we will try to answer.


  • Hi newbie,  im also a newbie, been in Afib for only 7 months and only found this site 2 weeks ago. I'm still learning myself so i will leave the advice to those much more knowledgeable then me. Try to relax and read as much info as you can find. Read through other posts on here and im sure a lot of your questions will be answered, the ACA website is very helpful also. All the best. 


  • A warm welcome to you 42 and was diagnosed last year and I can completely relate to how anxious you must be feeling...I think that anything that involves the heart understandably makes you terrified.  Main thing is, is to find professionals you trust and read as much on this site as possible and try not to Google too much...that was my mistake which sent me into a spin! Good luck and any questions please ask away x x x Sara x

  • I used to know that feeling about needing to be in good form for one's children.  My heart started to go off the rails when mine were about five and four, but now that the younger one is almost thirty and I'll be seventy later in the year it isn't quite as bothersome. 

  • I am a 45y old male, but have had AFIB for nearly 20 years.

    Bob and the rest of us will help you with answers.

    My story and experiance with afib is at:

    There is hope!

  • Try not to be scared some people on this site have had AF many years and live happy active lives and are always there for you they are a great lot love them

  • I'm thinking of you. Having twins is exhausting meaning you're already tired let alone af too.  Take magnesium is my advice and of course anticoagulants.  It will pass.  Xx

  • Hi Ahab, I'm 44 and was diagnosed 2 years ago. As I've said several times on the site, AF is scary at first, but once you get to know what your AF is like, it becomes less scary and more of a pain in the neck!

    Bob often says that AF is life-changing, not life-threatening and he's right. It's not going to kill you, and if anything you'll take greater care of yourself knowing that you have it than you would have done otherwise. If it's any consolation, my grandfather had permanent AF and lived well into his 90s despite drinking and smoking like a chimney.

    As you are at the start of your journey, read the information on the AF Association website, if possible attend the AF Patients' Day in October (details will be on the AFA website) and ideally you want to see an Electro Physiologist (EP) who is a specialist in the electrical workings of the heart. Make sure you ask for a copy of any ECGs that are done - you're entitled to them and it will make life easier down the line.

    Re the pain you feel around your heart, it could just be the ligaments around your heart that have been through the wars. Your cardiac sack (in which your heart sits) is attached to the diaphragm, which is why an AF episode can also affect your breathing. Everything tightens up, so you need to relax it out again. I do it by GENTLE massage or slight pressure through the fingers over the tight area, or using yoga relaxation techniques (find the tension in your body and mentally encourage the muscles to relax). Of course, any sharp, shooting pains are a completely different matter and you should look for medical help!

    Biggest piece of advice of all, though, is not to worry about it too much and get on with life. Pulse-checking can become addictive!!

    Best wishes


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