Ablate & Pace: I have had AF now for three... - AF Association

AF Association

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Ablate & Pace

cali111 profile image

I have had AF now for three years. I also have (possibly) a clot in my heart. I was offered surgery in 2017 and had numerous tests including a pre op. Suddenly they are having second thoughts about this. I am really confused as I thought I was now waiting for an addmission date. I am booked for a holter moniter. They will revise their offer if the results show I would have lless risk with ablate & Pace. I turned this down last year as I hesitate to go down this road as if it is not successful I would not have any choices left. I am sick and tired now of waiting and more tests and need something done. Has any people out there had this procedure and if so what are the drawbacks. I know this is low risk and coxmaze is high.

19 Replies
BobD profile image

Pace and ablate can't fail. What can is ones expectations of the result.

It can never stop AF but by pacing the ventricle and stopping any rogue signals getting down from the atria it normally ensures a regular heart beat and absence of the fatigue symptoms associated with AF. The atrium can therefore continue to play its own tune regardless although I do know that many people can still feel this fluttering going on.

cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to BobD

Thank you for your reply. I understand that the fluttering continues but this won't bother me. I did take digoxin but as I experienced so many arrhythmias and other side effects I no longer take it or any other medication except anticogulant and a diuretic for my BP. I try and count my blessings which are many as I have no other health problems aside of this breathlessness which keeps me house bound most of the time.

I'm unable to help but all the people I have met with pacemakers seem to lead normal lives. The units are very sophisticated but simple (if that make sense!) so are very reliable. Hopefully others with direct experience of Pace and Ablate will pick up on your post and offer their opinions....

cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to FlapJack

Thank you

Hidden profile image
Hidden in reply to cali111

I had a pace and ablate in 2016. Was diagnosed in 2011. My AF only settled down and allowed me a comfortable daily life after I got my pacemaker and ablation. Now I take no meds. We are all different. For me my daily quality of life is much better now. I am 74 and am in permanent a-fib. irina

cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to Hidden

That is great to hear. I am hoping that if they decide a pace & ablate is best for me I will go down that route. But until they have checked to see of the clot in my heart is gone they won't carry out any procedure.

Dunstall47 profile image
Dunstall47 in reply to cali111

I had an angiogram in Glenfield March 2017 the cardiologist Found 85 % blockage which was a blood clot cardiologist dispersed straight away, I then had a stent fitted straight away went home later that day.

Hi Cali I had pacemaker fitted beginning June this year and ablation 2 weeks later. Had to take it easy for a few weeks but immediately felt so much better and got my zest for life back. I’d had 3 unsuccessful ablations and was on high dose of bisoprolol and digoxin to try to control rate and felt dreadful. after discussing options and risks with EP I was happy to go ahead and am so glad I did. I think it’s important to write down all the questions you want to ask and discuss the pro’s and con’s with your EP and hopefully you will then be able to come to a decision

cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to JTJackie

Thank you for that. I don't think they missed a test and they all came back clear. So count your blessings and try to ignore the AF

Hidden profile image

Good to hear from you. I do hope you can make some swift progress because you have been treading water for such a long time.

cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to Hidden


cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to cali111

At least once they treat me it will be the best I can get and my other tests I passed with flying colours so I don't have to worry.!

Hi there - I have had afib for 4 1/2 years and I am now in permament AF. Been on various medications during this time (I also have HF which seems to be controlled). I have never been offered a cardioversion or an ablation. I asked my cardiologist to refer me to an EP several times over the first two years but this was refused. I eventually went to see an EP last August privately and have been told that my only option now is to have a pace and ablate. I would then be able to come off some of the medications which would make me feel a lot better along with having a regular HR. He also was annoyed that I was not referred to him early on when first diagnosed in 2014 as it may have been that an ablation might have been suitable. The ironic thing is that I live in Peterborough and Papworth is only 18 miles away but the cardiologist at Peterborough dose not seem to work closely with Papworth not with AF anyway. I too have not quite made my mind up, I need another talk with EP regarding various questions I have. Good luck.


cali111 profile image
cali111 in reply to cassie46

I am glad that you are at last having something offered you. I am in Telford and this EP/cardiologist is the 2nd one I have seen. I had no trouble getting referred I would make a complaint to your hospital if I were you.

I’m sorry to hear that you were treated that way by your cardiologist, Cassie. We’re you told why you could not be referred to an EP?

I, too, felt it necessary to take the Private route because of slow progress in the NHS, although I was only in the NHS System for 6 months. We all know the pressures he NHS is operating under but the sad thing, in my opinion, is that the delays ultimately lead to increased costs as the untreated condition worsens.

I am presently part-way through my Private treatment plan.

Hi Ian - His reply was that I did not need an EP, medication would be sufficient. Although we have a very new Hospital in Peterborough, I think that the cardiac unit is fairly basic because we are so near Papworth and Addenbrookes, Cambridge. That is okay if you get referred but not if you get stuck in the system as I did. As far as I can make out the senior Cardiac doctor is not a specialist in anything. Also Papworth have several doctors working at Peterborough a few days a week. Although I went privately to see EP at Papworth I have gone onto his NHS list for further treatament - will see what happens.


netie54 profile image
netie54 in reply to cassie46

Who did you see at Papworth. We wend private in the end , So much better in lots of ways. We are in Norwich

cassie46 profile image
cassie46 in reply to netie54

I chose to see Dr Andrew Grace - he is very well known, not sure I liked him that much, will see how I get on next time I see him.

I am with Morley-Davies at Stoke. He will make his recommendation after he studies the Holter results.

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