8 days post AF Ablation

Hi all! I had an AF ablation on March 2nd. I am having fatigue with exertion, some chest tightness (not constant - comes and goes), and shortness of breath. I feel whipped! Is this normal? I am scheduled to go back to work on the 17th but my stamina is very poor and I work in a very physical/stressful environment. Any suggestions? Why do I feel guilty about asking the cardiologist for a bit more time off? Is it up to how I feel or how I clinically present to request more time? Thank you for any responses!

8 Replies

  • Please do not go back to work too soon, let how your body feels be your guide. The EP will be happy to follow your lead he/she will be far more concerned about how you feel than timescale to date.

    Overdo it now and it can make your long term recovery longer to achieve. Best wishes, sounds like you are doing well just give it time.

  • Despite doctors often telling their patients they can go back to work in a few days it is common to feel wasted for weeks afterwards. Think about it. Somebody has been poking about inside your heart and just because you don't have a giant zip up your front does not mean you have had an easy ride. My arrhythmia nurse told me do nothing for the first week and not a lot more for the second and then gradually ease back to normal life bit listen to your body. Don't feel guilty please as that is what "work" wants of you. (Cynic me??) Nobody will thank you for going back too soon and then collapsing at work. Speak to your GP about a certificate or letter if needed but please consider your health first and don't go ruining the EPs work by over doing things.

  • Bob and I know because that is what we both did!

    Do as we say say, not as we did.

  • I asked for an extension on my sick certificate, as like you, felt totally wipped for at least 6 weeks!. As always said, it is really worth listening to your body and asking for what you need to enable a full and successful recovery. Medics can be strange as the cost of these ablations must be quite high so you would have thought they would want people to take recovery slowly so less likely hood of patient needing a repeat....

    Good luck and take it slow and easy.


  • Hi, I had my ablation the day after you did. I have some of the same symptoms but these have reduced over the last few days. I still feel a little low but it doesn't affect me too much. I'm not doing any physical exertion apart from the odd 15 minute walk.

    I went back to work after 5 days but it's a desk job and so no exertion, the hardest part is the commute. Thankfully I can work from home some days so this has reduced stress from this.

    Like the others have said, I wouldn't feel guilty about time off, you've earned it. I never forget the saying that on their deathbed no-one regrets that they should have worked more. You may look ok but your colleagues won't appreciate how tired you feel. Don't risk your recovery - you've only got one body. Sometimes you have to think about yourself, work can roll on without you for a while.

  • Thanks everyone for the support. It is so frustrating because I was told very little about the post-ablation recovery period and what to expect. Plus, when my mind is telling be "go" my heart will scream at me "no!". It's not like I have the flu and I am bed ridden, but I cannot do a lot (outside of short walks and stuff around the house). I have requested extra time off for me and my heart - I want this procedure to work and don't want to jeopardize it. I work in a busy little hospital at night for 12 hour shifts, having to cover multiple floors and deal with really intense stuff and my heart is literally not up for it. Thanks everyone!

  • i would take the time off that you need. `your point re the post ablation advice is well made - you see comparisons top root canal treatment - that may be valid during the procedure but not at all like the follow up - you don't sound as if you are ready to go back to work.

  • I think it's hard to say what to expect as we are all different and people can feel fine after one ablation and feel wiped out by another. It does no harm to take it very slowly afterwards, however one may feel.

    It may be completely irrelevant but you may like to check out what PZiglar01 had to say about phrenic nerve injury.

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