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AF Association
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Paroxysmal AF

Hi. I was diagnosed with P AF Fib 10 months ago. Have no underlying health problems apart from being Asthmatic which is no problem to me. So basically fit and healthy. Walk on average 30 mile a week. I score 2 on Chad's because I'm over 60 and female. My episodes are on average 3 to 4 months apart with no problems whatsoever in between. I take 1.25 Bisoprolol and stations. My own G P said no need for anticoagulants yet which I was happy with and felt quite confident about the future. I mAdelaide the mistake of seeing a different GP yesterday who was like a prophet of doom. He told me that I would definitely go into full blown AF one day and was really pushing apixiban . I never slept at all last night. He made me feel as if my life was over with no future at all. I had an echo and heart monitor when I was diagnosed . Over 48hrs monitor I had 2 short episodes the longest being 20 seconds . The echo showed a strong and healthy heart. My BP is naturally low and I have a low resting heart rate of 52 hence only 1.25 of Bisoprolol. I've gone from being confident to a wreck overnight because of this prophet of doom. 😡

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Well, what a toad! That feeling of being suddenly whizzed forward into old age, made to feel you are doomed without anticoagulation, life as you knew it is over and the end is nigh is not at all nice and for it me it was four years ago. All of it turned out to be not what actually happened. I'm back to being in the right place again but at the time it felt very real and unpleasant. No escape! Down into the dark, deep well of despondency. I'm in the sunshine now and life is all the sweeter for the misery I had then and don't have now.

But if the seeds of doubt have been sown and if apixaban has been offered, why not have a look at it. You might feel it's a step forward.

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Hi Rellim. That was a very reassuring reply. Your right anticoagulants might make me feel more secure. Do you take them or shouldn't I ask. ( new to this site )

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I do! AF doesn't trouble me too much. I've had occasional dodgy heartbeats for almost 30 years, (since I was 40) and have rather ignored them. My GP was OK with me not taking an anticoagulant, but a locum, when I was 66, sent me to a cardiologist who said I scored 3 (well controlled high blood pressure, age and female) on a scale I knew nothing about and anticoagulation (Warfarin) was to be my future way of life. I thought it was not the way I wanted to go and eventually capitulated with monumental trepidation coupled with a distinct feeling that I was making a mistake. I felt years older than I was, life was taken over by something that only affected me occasionally and I was not only peeved but on the verge of coming to some sticky end. I fear my early posts here were tediously incandescent as I found Warfarin difficult. I switched two years ago to Rivaroxaban (like Apixaban one of the newer anticoagulants) and have been just fine on it. No disasters, no problems. None of the dire possibilities materialised. As I'm now 70 and more at risk, I feel anticoagulation is probably entirely appropriate. Many forum contributors tend to favour it earlier rather than later but I wasn't a bit keen.

In his favour, my cardiologist referred me to my electrophyiologist (EP) who has done wonders for me, though I am not AF free.

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Hi Rellim. You make me feel so much better with your comments as you are female and the same age as me which helps a lot. I suppose I have been lucky to have not developed it earlier . I am going back to see my own G P for a chat and to ask about an E P. Thank you so much for all your help . It's much appreciated.

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Thank you, Stivvy. I sympathise because I wallowed in that life's over and there's no future situation for a while and didn't enjoy it at all. You can suddenly have the carpet swiped from under your feet and feel very vulnerable.

AF itself can be a great incentive to take stock and look after oneself. It's extra peeving to those of us who have been doing that and yet still have hearts that go off the rails.

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I guess when you have done all you can all your life to look after yourself it comes as a shock. Of all the things I thought I might get a heart problem would have been bottom of the list but then again my mother had AF so I guess it was in the blue print when I was born . She died 2 months ago. Not of AF and not of an illness. She was just tired out. Not a bad legacy eh Rellim.

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Not bad at all Stivvy.

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Hi Again. Just an update. Saw myour own GP after being frightened to death by another GPS bluntness. His thoughts where the same about anticoagulants. Better to be safe than sorry. I thought by only having episodes every 3 months or so and being so fit made a difference but apparently not. . You have a strove risk whatever. I am female and in my late 60s. He prescribed APaxabandoned 5mg twice dailyearly. BUT I am only slim. My weigHTC is 52kg at 5ft 2 inch. So we'll under the 60mg cut off but GP said as kidney function is ok then there's no problem. Hence I'm still looking at an unopened box of tablets. Why oh why do I have to question everything 😠

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Sorry about the mistakes. I should check my predictive more

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There are better ways to deal with people.

Incidentally beta blockers may not be a great idea if you have asthma so watch out that you are not made worse in this way. It is a very small dose at present.

To be honest current guidelines are that with a score of 2 then anti-coagulation is highly recommended but what is important is your other co-morbities . Actual time in AF and frequency are not considered to be important , more the under lying risk. One must have some sympathy with the doctor here as failure to draw this to your attention could leave him open to censure by not following proper procedures but I agree there are ways and ways.

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Hi Bob. I don't have any comorbidities. Heart absolutely fine. Just the wiring a bit screwed up ! I do tolerate the Bisoprolol well. They tried the calcium channel blockers but they didn't suit so went back to Bisoprolol. I do realise the position the GP was in I guess like all of you lovely people on this sight it is all hard to take in at the beginning. Just takes time I guess.

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What a thing to say to you!!

My sister had infrequent AF attacks like you and they eventually just disappeared. How often do your AF episodes last for?

Jean

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Hi. Jeanjeanniece. Only had 4 episodes. Shortest 50 minutes and the longest 4 hours. Always kicks back in itself. Thankfully

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I have to admit that's how mine started and then the episodes got closer and longer over a very short period of time. I refused to take any medication at first, but as my AF became worse I had no choice and eventually ended up having three ablations. If I were you I would aim to have a more healthier plant based diet and cut out all artificial additives and alcohol. I've also cut out wheat and lactose and the difference in how I feel is amazing.

Jean

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Apixaban has been fine so don't worry!

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Hi

Dont let that so called doctor tell you information that is NOT a fact

It is well documented that in healhty people with no heart disease PAF is an condition that doctors no little about

Many cardiologist will tell you that Afib does not always go to permeant af

And some cardiolisgidt like dr john day state it can be reversed or reduced

Researchers are constanly scratching their heads as to what is causing this growing trend and in the young as well

So be your own boss do your own research think for your self

Dont go back to a docter who behaves as if he knows because he does not its still only theries as to what PAF is

There is a an amazing researcher called ruth and her theory is on a bio - level and states the body is depleted of vitamins and minerals of which i can agree

I cant remeber her surname but it begins with matt ... if i find the name i will text back she is amazing 🌺🌺🌺🌺

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To be quite truthfull Jamilla. That is my way of thinking. I have read everything I can on P A F. And it seems the jury is out on it. If you had 4 doctors in the same room they would all come up with a different speck on it. I get sick of hearing the comment . Government guidelines Say !

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I am 60 next month, female and asthmatic. AF runs in my family too. One cardiologist told me it is a slippery slope because it usually gets more annoying with time which sounds dispiriting but there is an increased risk for many problems with age so I don't worry about it. If you see a specialist and get advice on the right meds, I'm sure you will feel better and more confident.

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Thanks for that . You know there's nothing at all we can do about genetics is there. I have really looked after myself all my life. Makes you wonder if it was worth it. I will seriously think about the apixiban though. If nothing else it will give me piece of mind. Everybody's comments have been so helpfully.

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No, and I'm stuck with a brother who competes with me to stay in NSR the longest! Looking after yourself may have delayed the onset and severity but of course has other benefits. I take Apixaban with no side effects, so as far as I'm concerned, no down-side. You might be offered Flecainide, a rhythm control drug, to take as and when. We call it the family drug of choice lol!

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I had to push my gp to start rivaroxaban. I didn't want stroke after seeing family members suffer with stroke.

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Hi Stivvy - oh I have been there too!! - like you I am female and over 60 and when I was first diagnosed I was told my heart was strong and no need to worry so once my body settled down with the new medications I felt fine and was optimistic about my future health. My episodes of PAF were infrequent, happened at night and of short duration so didn't worry me. Then I had a really bad episode triggered by a viral infection that landed me in A&E where the doctor I saw gave me all the 'bad' news in the bleakest of terms - how it might damage my heart, might progress to permanent AF, how I needed to increase my medication, would need an ablation ..... I had the same feelings of doom and anxiety you describe - that my life was effectively over, that my plans for retirement would be blighted by ill-health...

But two good things came out of that trip to A&E - firstly I found this forum with so much knowledge and advice and support - and secondly it got me referred to an EP. As a result of the information and advice I have made some lifestyle and other changes that have helped reduce the PAF episodes and I was able to discuss all this sensibly with my EP - the result of which I am now on less medication than was originally prescribed, I have been told that I do not at present need an ablation and will continue to be monitored by the EP and team, so I feel I am safe, in good hands and my self-confidence is back.

So I would say do not despair and don't worry about the apixiban - it does give protection against stroke and many people on this forum, myself included, have no problems with taking it - there are alternatives if it doesn't suit you.

And keep an eye out for the good news stories on this forum - lots of people with success stories to tell - this condition seems to affect everyone differently so we don't know how it will go in the future. I have decided to try to stay positive and take each day as it comes - and do everything that I can do myself to try to be one of the success stories!! And if I don't succeed, well I know where to come for advice and support.....

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Hi Take. You know I have never seen a cardiolagist let alone an EP . I was diagnosed last August after going to A E. Episode lasted 2 hours and stopped itself. I was sent to my GP. Had an echo. Heart was in A condition. 48hr traicing showed just 2 episides the longest being 20 seconds. I have another 3 since then each 3 months apart. I will ring my GP tomorrow ( not Mr doom ) and ask if I can be referred. I feel as if I have been pushed to one side and left to get on with it. As you say this forum is brilliant. It's givenot me so much more confidence. So thanks to all of you. Watch this space !

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Hi again - I really think getting referred to a good EP is the way to go. It certainly worked for me, I am much happier knowing I am under specialist care as my GP has been totally useless!! Like others have said we need to take control!!

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my cardiologist said doesn't matter how much or little AF you get if you have it then you should consider anticoagulants.

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I do understand the logic behind that. I'm beginning to realise though since I have been on this forum that it's the fact that I have never seen anybody other than G Ps and they both have different opinions so I think it's lack of confidence that is the problem. Thanks dmack.

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I am 73 and diagnosed a year ago. It took about 3 or 4 months to go from very intermittent to every other day or so. Very scary. I have been waiting since January for a date for ablation, but in the meantime I have been exploring other ways of managing the condition. Look online at Dr Sanjay Gupta videos on YouTube about AF and magnesium as you may be deficient. Consider going wheat and gluten free. Try supplementing with Omega 3 and ubiquinol. My episodes have reduced in frequency and intensity. I still have some, but not totally disabling, Just a bit knackering. There is lots on interesting stuff on the web, not least about reducing inflammation, which is key. Good luck!

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Hi Hilaryjm . I have read a lot about magnesium definitely give it a try. Where you recommended coagulation when you where paroxysmal This is the scary bit for me. I'm still looking at the unopened box !

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Sorry to butt in on a six month old post but I am concerned about the reply re magnesium. The writer is correct that magnesium is good for AF but patients on anti coags must NOT take it!

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[Quote = cluds''AF but patients on anti coags must NOT take it!'']

Hi cluds65 :-) can you show some confirmation of this please.

The York Cardiologist Dr Gupta recommends Magnesium Taurate for people with AF many of whom take ACs myself included. I don't think he would recommend MT if it had contraindications for those taking AC's

I understand there is some evidence Magnesium should not be taken with Warfarin but I wasn't aware this applies to NOACS which many of us take.

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Hidden Yes I am on rivaroxaban. It was a no-brainer

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...once I learned that the stroke risk was five times that of the non AF population even if no comorbidities, and age and gender counted against me as well, Hidden

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Thanks for that Hillaryjm, peace of mind is a precious thing, it's hard when it's new to you, takes time I guess to let it sink in. Really appreciate your comments.

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Hi Again and hello to all who replied, you where all very helpful. Latest update is that I have realised it would help my cause if I took the prescribed 5mg twice daily Apixaban , 'BUT' I only weigh 51kg, guidance is that 60kg and under should not take this dose unless you have good kindney function which I do, , I worry that this dose would put my kidneys under pressure, one of you lovely people suggested I look at DR Sanjays videos, very helpful advice as he explains things really well, he mentioned Eliquis as an alternative for low body weight patients, I am only just over 5 ft so quite a small female,

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