Fast heartbeat: Have just bought myself a... - AF Association

AF Association

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Fast heartbeat


Have just bought myself a Fitbit type thing and worn if for 24hours. My heart appears to be going far too fast all the time. Always above 70 and often in the 80s - sometimes high 80s - when I am merely sitting. It shoots up doing the slightest exercise Don’t know how to get it down. Deep breathing and beautiful thoughts don’t appear to help much.

Had my ablation last October and after an initial dreadful time am miles better now. Can even walk 18 holes on my golf course - at a push but am utterly exhausted afterwards of course. Can manage 18 holes with a buggy now no problem. This is such good news.

6 Replies

FitBits - and any other wrist-based heart rate monitors - are notoriously inaccurate. I got rid of mine for the same reason you describe. It would jump 30 or 40 points if I walked across the room. You need a chest strap monitor like a Polar, Garmin or Wahoo. I have a Wahoo and it is much more accurate than my FitBit. Now, when I get up and walk across the room, it blips up 2 or 3 bpm, not 40! My heart anxiety has improved a lot since I stopped with the FitBit.


Sorry you are worrying but there is no need. This is very normal. Raised heart rate post ablation (typically around 85 is common and may take nine months to a year to return to normal. Add in the fact that "normal heart rate" is considered to be anything between 60 and 100 and you have nothing to worry about.

My af symptoms settled down about 5 months after ablation but it took about s year for my heart rate to go back to normal.

Thank you that is good to know.

I know I'm late to this thread, but I'd like to point out that the FitBit system seems to show some kind of 'average' or 'smoothed' rate. Mine continues to show a reading for quite some time after I've taken it off my wrist, and similarly takes a while to get going again when I put it back on. Also, it shows only about half the true rate when I'm in AF, although still shockingly high for a resting state. See other posts about how they work and how bad they are when AF is involved.

Nevertheless, they are an indication of your pulse rate that I can use to make judgements, and if I need anything more accurate, I will consult my Kardia. I would not trust any other pulse monitor while in AF.

Thank you. Mine is not actually a Fitbit but a Garmin approach X40. Similar to a Fitbit though. It is useful to have it on my wrist when I play golf and am walking up our hills when I cannot use my Kardia of course. It is easy to monitor my heartbeat on it at those times and it has the added advantage that it shows distance to the pin! Walked 9 holes yesterday including the uphill ones and glory be I won! 4 1/2 years ago I could not imagine being able to do that again.

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