Feeling down after echo result

After waiting since Xmas had echo last week and saw GP this afternoon. Told me left atrium is enlarged, but heart functioning ok and basically keep taking the pills (diltiazem and lisinopril). Had to ask him to refer me to EP but tells me he can only refer to Cardiology and they will decide who I will see. He reckons they are "all good"! Waiting time is around 3 months

All this today when PMR playing up and now got some jaw pain with eating (not cardiac) so having to keep an eye on that incase any other head pain/visual sympts.

Think I need a good drink, only that would make me feel even worse so will have some chocolate instead!!!

11 Replies

  • Don't be too disheartened - the very good news is that your heart function is good. The enlargement of an atrium - or both of them - is usually a side effect of having AF and that can reverse itself in the absence of AF episodes.

    In my part of the country a GP can only refer NHS patients to Cardiology, so perhaps your area is similar. Here the NHS wait for referral from cardiology to EP was 11 months, so I asked my GP for a private referral to an EP rather than face such a wait. Your GP is probably right that 'they are all good' but the EP's are the electricians and the other guys are plumbers of the heart.

    I like the idea of the chocolate - I force myself to take some each afternoon!

  • Thanks Finvola, good advice on ep, think I will farce the chocolate on myself every afternoon too!!

  • Enlarged left atrium is not uncommon with long term AF but if all functions are fine then it is not a major set back. If you are in UK I would argue that you can demand to see and be treated by whoever you wish but you may have to fight that battle with your GP. Why not look up an EP near you (check out AF Association main website for details under patient information. and ask you doctor to refer you.

  • Did ask GP for specific referral but told only cardiology would decide who I would see. Will think about private referral now, thanks BobD

  • If you can afford it get that first appointment privately as BobD says but DON'T cancel your NHS one.

    I don't see why you should not be referred straight to an EP. You could say to him very politely that if he had problems with his electrics he would not call in the plumber first.

  • Did say to him about the "electrician" bit but said his hands are tied, thanks for good advice re keeping appointment though

  • Hi Nannie

    Hope you enjoy your choccies - whish I could join in but for me chocolate is one of my triggers, and if I have them in the evening I cann't sleep. So just have the very odd one nowadays.


  • That's a good point from PeterWh - I left my NHS referral on the table and saw the EP privately. At the private consultation, the EP said he would follow up at the NHS referral, which he did - in the event, the NHS wait had stretched to 16 months.

  • That is what I think I will do now, my 3 month wait sounds nothing to your 16 months, what is the NHS coming to. Thank goodness for these groups to give such good support and advice 👏🏻

  • I have just seen my GP today and asked about EP & he told me the same as you. Basically he can only refer to Cardiology - the cardiologist then has the ability to call in EP if he thinks it is required. I have not seen cardiologist yet to discuss EP.

    I was told by GP with my AF being so recently diagnosed the cardiologist will want to check for plumbing issues first - clogged arteries etc.

  • The tail wagging the dog!!!???

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