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AF Association
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Flipping back after cardioversion

This may be a silly question but is it possible for a shock to make you flip back to AF? I had cardioversion 3 weeks ago and everything was going ok. Was feeling better than I had for ages. One night, about a week ago, one of my neighbours decided it would be a good idea to start burning some rubbish in his garden. It was about 1 am when an very loud bang woke me up. I don't know what he had put on the fire but it had exploded, I could literally feel my heart pounding like crazy in my chest. Since then I've started to feel breathless again and ecg shows I have flipped back so am now having to take more medication. Could that shock of the explosion of caused it or is it just a coincidence?

6 Replies

Hi! No, this is not a silly question.

Some years back I was woken by the phone ringing at my bedside in the early hours which set my heart pounding and then went into fast AF. End result was another cardioversion in hospital in the following 24 hrs. I suppose it might depend on whst part of your sleep cycle you are in when you are suddenly awoken like this. Just guessing.

Hope you get sorted soon



Any adrenaline rush like a sudden shock can make you heart race and this can sometimes result in AF if you have it. On the other hand you have AF so you will get it so there may be no reason.



I believe that any shock or stress can trigger AF. People have commented about how high I jump if the phone rings unexpectantly when I am near to it. Yatsura's comment about your sleep cycle is an important point. I suspect that you were in very deep sleep when the explosion occurred.

I'm thankful that my lovely neighbours would never do anything so stupid in the middle of the night.


I live in a small village, very close to a single track railway and one night, in their great wisdom, Network Rail came to do something on the line with a pneumatic drill. I was startled by it, woke up and went into my first ever attack of AF. Ended up at A&E. I am sure it was the cause. It has set off all sorts of problems for me, such as anxiety and tachycardia at night and a general feeling of doom. I am still so angry about it but they never learn and last night I heard them scraping around on the line and so woke up and luckily was wide awake when they started the pneumatic drill. Complaints get us nowhere. They promise to advise when they are coming but somehow get it all wrong and advise somewhere completely different! No wonder they are in so much debt - apologies to any one who works for them.


After a successful Cardioversion, the first being unsuccessful, I went back into AF after 13 days when my husband got a phone call to say his mother had fallen and had to be taken to hospital.


Two lots of rotten luck.

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