Should I go to A and E?

Morning all.  I was diagnosed last week but not yet on beds.   Seeing cardiologist next week for that.   So meantime am in "limbo".

As bad luck would have it, I have had worst weekend of episodes ever and been continually in A-fib now for 24 hours.   Mainly irregular heart not a v high HR as resting rate pretty low and my af doesn't seem to present as a very fast pulse rather just madly erratic. 

No other issues so considered lone AF.  Am 49 female and in good health although need to lose 2 stone.   Not breathless or dizzy.  Really tired as awake all night.

Of course surgery closed - phoned NHS 24 they advised going straight to a and E buy I have small kids and it would be a big deal to drag husband home from work etc.  I feel a bit daft as AF already diagnosed so I don't need them to tell me what I have and I low it won't kill me. However should I be getting ACs given how long it's gone on now?

Thanks all

12 Replies

  • Beds should read meds. ...sorry tired and predictive text and also don't know how to edit posts....

  • It's a difficult question as you are newly diagnosed - has anything been said about possible cardio version as if that was the case you may need to go to A and E so it can be done within short  time frame.  Sometimes it is left to a later date- hence difficult to comment.  If you had had AF for some time, it would normally depend on whether you have other symptoms that trouble you and whether your heart rate is very fast ( which you say is not)

    Also, as you are not on any medication it may be wise to go

    I always think its best to go if in doubt- you could ring your local A and E and discuss with them too??

  • Hi no cardioversion not discussed as at the time episode weren't lasting more than about 2 hours.  This.latest marathon has been a huge exception.

    All I'm worried about is the stroke risk being so much higher after a long episode (which is finally abating dare I say it).  

    Think I will have a cup of tea and 2 aspirin and try and forget it

      Can always go to a and e tonight when hubby home. 

  • In general if you have any chest pain or feel dizzy then GO. It is already too late to do a cardioversion  unless you have been on anticoagulants for some time so that idea is a non starter I'm afraid.

    Regarding stroke risk with your age and other considerations this is very low and in normal circumstances you would not currently be put onto anticoagulants unless a cardioversion or ablation was planned.  Try not to worry as that really won't help but a cup of tea sounds a good idea. One sugar for me please.

    All the best.


  • up to 48 hours for cardioversion in literature and on Heart Rhythmn Society website Bob!

  • Has anyone here in the UK ever had a cardioversion within the 2 or three day time span? I have gone to hospital three times and been told I would be put on the waiting list even when once getting an appointment with the consultant on the second day. 

  • The problem is defining when your event started. That is why many hospitals are reluctant to do DCCV at all let alone at 24  or even 48 hours.  I have had DCCV at short notice when not on anticoagulants but had to have a TOE first to ensure that there were no clots hiding in the old ticker. This was not done at a local hospital either but at a tertiary centre in London by the EP team who treated me. Smaller  local hospitals seem quite unable to step up to the plate.

  • I have twice known exactly as they started right after a medical procedure when my vagal nerve was stimulated. I was not on anti coagulants on each of those occasions.

  • If you are unsure go with your gut feeling it's rarely wrong like a mothers instinct.   You could call a and e and ask to speak with someone.  Mention cardiac issue and they will most likely get someone to speak with you and advise you. 

    You mentioned going tonight when your partner is home if things are still the same, sounds like a good plan.

    Hope things settle for you very soon.  If symptoms were to excelerate then go beforehand.

    Take care. Thinking of you.

  • Not a easy decision. It is so scary when a newbie.  My GP did send me to A&E once 3 weeks following ablation when my AF 'events' restarted more ferociously than before the procedure. He couldn't read my pulse it was too fast. I had no pain. In all likelihood A&E will hook you up on monitors and perhaps try a beta blocker and wait to see if you return to NSR. But it is so reassuring that you are 'in a place of safety' as apposed to being at home. There is a view that it is a waste of their time and resource and the taking up of a bed etc but the doctors said to me 'why did you wait so long before coming in?'. I had been in AF for 36 hours or so. Hopefully I won't go again, I have got used to to the AF attacks and can recognise their rogue patterns. Not true for all sufferers I know.

  • Morning everyone. Well I ended up in madly choice rythm and HR around 80 (high for me as usually 50ish).  It's the pounding I can't stand it even makes my arms shake.  

    Just got on with our bank holiday plans and it abated eventually, leaving a sore chest and a tired mummy :)

    However I was eventually phoned back by NHS24 nurse and she was v cross with me and called the registrar at A and E for me to check whether I should still present despite now having no symptoms (I knew it would be pointless but she insisted).  He advised next time not to leave it more than 30 minutes before going there...good grief I'd be there every day....maybe I'd get some kind of a plaque and my own chair?

    I have daily attacks and I just have to live with it till I get some medicine and pray that works.  

    Good luck all.  Thank you very much for replying on what was one of my darkest days yet.

  • Good to hear you are back in normal sinus rhythm

    - could you get your appointment moved forward ( ring consultants secretary) so you can get some medication if required. You could let them know you are having daily episodes now.  I would go to A and E if you can if it starts again and then press for early appt re medication !!

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