Can Afib be triggered by virus?

Hello all. I've come down with a bad bug and my chest feels... I guess 'weak' is the best way to describe it. I've been pretty breathless the last couple of days and have had a constant headache for ages 😔

My only 'official' Afib episodes have happened roughly a month apart in Feb and March. It's now approaching the time when I'd expect it to happen again and I'm just a little anxious about it as I'm not due to meet my cardiologist for the first time until the middle of May. I really don't want to have potentially two more episodes between now and then!

Any experience of being unwell causing you to go into Afib?

Thanks,

Tash

12 Replies

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  • I would say yes.I am not a doctor so what I say is based upon experience. A nephew develop ME which lasted 2 years.He was in his twenties at the time. Then about five years ago he developed AF.On both occasions he had a bad respiratory problem following 'a cold'..

  • Any inflammation in the body can upset the main systems like vagus nerve which in turn can lead to AF . It isn't guaranteed but it is possible. Try not to worry about it as this really won't help and possibly exacerbate things. Your AF burden is quite low by comparison and May isn't that far away.

  • I know it is so difficult, but try not to dwell on the idea that another AF bout is due. Anxiety is as likely to trigger one as anything. I had recent bouts of bad ectopics which started daily around 4pm and it was difficult not to watch the clock.

    The main illness triggering my AF was gut bugs - every time and I've had a few bad colds which didn't - but we are all so different. I hope your bug clears quickly - drink plenty of fluids and rest.

  • I had four episodes of AF during a particularly bad bout with the flu. Had no AF episodes for two years prior to the flu. My gp said the AF was triggered by the illness - temperature, cough, nausea, got dehydrated (a big no no for Afibbers), used cough syrup (a mistake - heart stimulant). Since overcoming this illness, I have had no further episodes - a little over a month. So, I don't know if it was a conincidence that I had the AF while sick but prefer to believe my gp on this one and place the reason for the AF on the flu.

    All the best.

  • The answer is yes. The C reaktiv protein (CRP) is part of the antiviral reaction of our immune system. CRP can induce aFib. Myself when I got flu, I had every day aFib episodes, until a flu was not over.

  • I have just got over the most horrible chest infection I have ever had expected to go into AF every day ,couldn't get out of bed for 5days but heart behaved perfectly but a week after I was better guess what woke up in AF lasted about 6hours

  • Ive a stinker of a cold right now.

    Woke up with af.

    Its happened before with a bad chest infection.

    Hope you keep well. Im hoping this one doesn't last too long.

    Take care

  • Still going. Not strongly, but been going now 11 hours.

    C'mon. Enough!!!

  • Oh you poor thing, I hope it passes soon x

  • Yes, yes and yes - for me anyway! Had a really bad chest infection earlier this year and had AF whilst I was ill but only once. What I really keep an eye on is my INR. Normally I am pretty stable and have the same dose every week, but any sort of cold or infection I check my levels. The first time I was really unwell my INR went up to 6, and any illness now I check my INR myself and follow the advice the nurse gave me then, which was to miss two days of warfarin (depending on high my INR is). This isn't advice, just my personal experience.

  • Several times I've had an afib episode come out of the blue, for no apparent reason--then a day or 2 later I'd experience symptoms of an infection. My heart knew my body was fighting off infection before i did! The body is an amazing system!

  • I think this is how it is most often found. I had bronchitis and saw an immediate care Dr. One week later, I was feeling horrible and thought maybe it had progressed to pneumonia. Immediate care Dr did any number of tests and told me to go directly to the ER. Said I could suffer from a stroke (didn't say afib) if I wasn't seen by a dr. It was a Saturday.

    I was transferred from ER to hospital for 3 days. Monitor heart. I went in and out of Afib. Anyway, the ep said A fib is often found when someone is ill. Most stories I have read have fairly identical stories.

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