Still new, in a rough patch in the mental g... - AF Association

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Still new, in a rough patch in the mental game of AF


Hello lovely members of this community. I'm grateful to have found you.

I have been having a rough week or so and would appreciate very much any support and inspiration you might care to share with me.

After a summer of a lighter and manageable teaching load, I started back a week ago with 2 college courses and it seems that while it is a lovely place and I enjoy it very much, it's too much for me physically right now. It's taken me by surprise.

I have asked to speak to my EP to follow up on going off of Toprol, which he is fine with.

It's confounding; I have felt both clearer mentally and with more energy overall since going off Toprol (around 2 weeks ago), but my heart feels more jittery and weaker. Towards the end of my class yesterday and then all evening, I shifted in and out of AF. They are definitely not as strong as episodes in the past and maybe aren't even AF; Kardia sometimes flags activity as Possible AF that isn't. But I haven't had these particular kinds of symptoms before. I'd generally feel good all day, then go to bed and have an episode around once per week. This is quite different.

I seem to have hit a wall in the mental game of AF, too. After finding this wonderful community and Dr. Gupta, thinking now *that's* how a doctor ought to be (!), I've felt emotions that I must've sat on while soldiering on with the Western doc style who is rather detached.

I am so tired of it all. The ambiguity, the things that don't work, doctors who disagree about approach, the physical impact, and lately anxiety. I've actually become fairly skilled at dealing with it all, but starts to feel like it's all I do and I'm just fed up. Somehow need to get past it.

I'm hoping my acupuncturist might squeeze me in.

I did take my 100 mg Flecainide PIP last night, with 6.25 mg Toprol (half of my previous dose; though small, seems to have helped). It did eventually calm things down and today I feel the fatigue and drugged aftereffects of last night.

I'm wondering if others who have vagally mediated AF and who have gone off Toprol have had these kinds of symptoms as well.

I'm wondering what other non-beta blocker rate control medications others have had success with.

Mainly kindness and encouragement would help a lot at this point. It might help me get my feet back under me again.

Thank you very much.

45 Replies

I've not had any experience with Tropadol but I can relate to the frustration and the fed up scenarios and the anxiety. And there are many here who have been through it at the beginning middle or recent parts of their AF journey.

I had a particularly low week a couple of weeks ago during which I ended up spewing a very long self pity thread into the forum. No one judged, people supported, advised and sent best wishes. All of which helped.

Rest assured you're not the first nor the last to go through the days of the black dog and this community is great for helping tame it.

Hidden in reply to jedimasterlincoln

Thanks, Jedi. I really appreciate your support. I took a look at that post you mentioned. The support in response to it brought tears to my eyes.

Finding good support has been a real challenge for me, meaning support outside of my doctors, who are lovely people. Even my EP is really a very nice man. I just feel so uncomfortable being vulnerable with someone I hardly know and rarely talk to. Plus with this new AF knowledge gained just recently, I can't help but want to say something about feeling so frustrated by the lack of education patients are given about AF in general. I will have to sort that out. I don't want to blow up at him!

I know people, like my neighbors, who are nice and have helped me out in practical ways and likely would be happy to again. It's the emotional component that's toughest. If I see one of them, they ask how I am, and I say something like, rough night with AF, so I'm a little tired today, they really don't seem to want to know that or hear it. So then I try to keep it to myself. The kindness here is what makes all the difference. I don't want to burden people, but just some understanding would help so that I'm not doing everything alone.

I have just written a long reply to you which seems to have disappeared into thin air!

Never mind, the gist of it was that we all know how you feel and that it helps to put your trust in someone. Do you have easy access to your EP so that you can query medication?

AF has the power to control our lives if we are not careful.

Hope you find a way through all this x

I have just seen Jedimasters lovely reply and truly he has spoken for us all I think. X

Wish you all the best. Not very inspirational words, but heartfelt all the same. (no pun intended)

Hidden in reply to Gwersey

Thank you, Gwersey! I appreciate your kindness.


Thank you, dedeottie. I really appreciate your words of support. I have a request in for a phone call with my EP. His nurse is very kind and transmits messages. I've been in closer contact throughout with my acupuncturist, who very kindly squeezed me into his schedule tomorrow, so I'm grateful for that.

I really don't know the EP very well and it's my own discomfort with the dynamic that has reared its head this week. I suppose it's good to air that out, so maybe it's not such a bad thing to let those emotions out.

My acup knows me really well and tracks my health very closely, which I greatly appreciate.

I spoke to the EP once, he did the procedure, I spoke to him 3 mos later. It was basically, sorry you're still in AF, it's pills and procedures, that's all I've got, see you in 6 mos. Which is in 2 weeks.

I understand that this is just how these guys work. I need to talk to him about the medication. I feel uncomfortable when I feel vulnerable talking to him or my cardio cause they are rather detached and if any emotions come up in me, they're polite, but there I am, feeling so awkward. I will have to find a way to work through my discomfort to deal with him.

Redders in reply to Hidden

I know how you feel re your EP, I’ve had af for many many years and only actually spoken to him face to face ONCE. I’ve had two ablations and waiting for my third, when I do speak to any of his team my words get muddled, I can’t think what to say. Do hope you feel better soon and you get things sorted.

Hidden in reply to Redders

Thanks, Redders, for your kindness and concern. I did have a nice chat with my EP and sorted out the medications and will see my cardio soon to check in. I had a good acupuncture session today and feel so much better. All the support has really helped. Kindness is powerful medicine.

Hi Nella (you may really be called Bella as my tablet insists!),

The only advice I can give at the moment is to stop trying so hard, easier said than done I know, for someone of a very conscientious nature. You are taking great responsibility for your own health in many ways and it's hard work! You already have a job! As you say yourself, it seems like it's all you do, but then add you want to see your acupuncturist (another 'task'). Try to accept that the worst thing about AF is its unpredictability and concentrate on how you are going to manage that in your life instead of managing the AF - have you ever heard the expression 'herding cats'? Allow yourself a set time per day to concentrate on your AF (research, reading forums, kicking things, a good cry) then park it and live your life a best you can. It is absolutely OK to feel all the negative emotions storming about you for a while, then you can pick yourself up and go on. As Jedimaster said we all have these moments and most of us stick around to help because we know how dark they are.

As for the medication, you could try Diltiazem instead, I take it because I can't take betablockers. But I have to say it can have side effects of lethargy and worse at higher doses. As you've proved you need to take something you may have to accept a trade-off, sorry! 💜

Keep Calm and Carry On, from the Brits 🇬🇧


Thanks, Buffafly. I've often described AF as herding cats. Ahh, acupuncture is not simply another task! It calms me down and he's right across the street. It's sheer delight.

I appreciate your advice and also want to add that I look at the challenge as managing the AF so as to be able to manage my life. It's definitely not a matter of wanting to perfect my management of AF only for the sake of being conscientious.

Lately I haven't been able to think too clearly when in AF and have made really stupid mistakes as a pulling into the wrong turn lane the other day, into oncoming traffic. Glad I was able to pull out of that without disaster. Or thinking my class ends 25 minutes later than it should, while I'm teaching. Or getting in a car accident, very likely post-AF fatigue-related.

I think that this storm has largely passed. Realizing that keeping that awful physically-induced anxiety down is key. Doing my best to do that.

I do appreciate the Brit ability to Keep Calm and Carry On and shall do my best. My ancestors are from England and I chuckled after finding this forum when I remembered that when first diagnosed, I watched hours of Downton Abbey because it was so comforting. And post-ablation, it was hours of The Crown. Just found it very comforting.

Thank you for the support. I appreciate it.

As a former teacher, I have some understanding of how hard it must be trying to manage AF and all the responsibilities of your job. I am long retired and didn't have AF whilst still teaching, but I keep thinking to myself ….. I could never have coped with full-time teaching and AF. Hats off to you for doing just that!

What we Brits are (or used to be?) famous for is being able to maintain 'a stiff upper lip' in the face of adversity. I guess it was that stoicism that enabled people to get through tough times. People are more inclined to show their emotions these days - and that's no bad thing. Were it not for this change then people wouldn't feel able to seek the support of strangers on a Forum like this + I think it is way easier to 'talk' to strangers online than it generally is to open up to people face to face.

Keep talking to us Hidden and we'll carry on offering support.

Chin up! as my stoic of a Dad used to say.


Thank you, CaroleF. I very much appreciate your kindness! I'm happy to learn that you were a teacher. You understand what it's like. I teach adults, college level and privately, via video (wonderful discovery that was! much less stressful). They are non-native speakers of English, so I must be extra patient. But it's OK cause they're quite sweet and slowing things down for them keeps me calm.

I just had a good chat with my EP & got the meds sorted out. Will see my cardio in a week and happened to get a delightful young woman as a scheduler who left me feeling very supported. I'm reminded that they are really lovely people and am grateful to have their support. The reaching out and connecting is so important and has not always been easy for me because of some past experiences with doctor offices. Fortunately, the people I have now are very kind and I'm choosing to focus on that.

I have felt more anxious from recent symptoms, especially when I'm fuzzy-headed, because there is financial pressure attached. I have to support myself and AF has already really set me back from not being able to work as much. I do my best. It's not always just an AF episode for me because of the consequences of missing work or possibly being irritable and potentially offending a private student. That's when it gets really stressful. I've gotten better at managing it and try not to get ahead of myself and worry. Thank you for helping me get back on my feet from this storm, which is passing more quickly with all this kindness.

Yes, chin up! That is really a good reminder.

Hi Nella

What I love about this forum is the feeling of love and understanding from others who know what we’re going through. Dealing with the physical issues associated with AF is one thing but I’m finding the psychological and emotional side the hardest. I had a wonderful life until my heart and other health issues hit. I’ve now been hospitalised 5 times in 4 months and I’m off work, wondering what the future holds. I’m a positive person (usually) so I’m trying to take things one day at a time. I’ve learnt so much from people on this forum and I’ve read a lot, watched YouTube videos and listened to many podcasts - I think I could almost pass a cardiology exam 😂. Knowledge is power.

Keep smiling.


Hidden in reply to Kaz747

Thanks, Kax747. I agree with you about the psychological and emotional side of it being the hardest. The challenge I've faced, which may be common, is that we must deal with doctors who basically ignore much of that aspect of the condition. Being kind in an appointment is greatly appreciated, but it is the ongoing support that is often lacking. Finding it here is wonderful.

I feel better able to discuss this with my cardio next week. I will suggest that he tell patients about this forum and Dr. Gupta.

I appreciate your support!

Good morning, first try and calm yourself a bit. It doesn’t help AF when you have a panic. If you are new you will go through loads of medication till they find the right one for you. What is good for some could be no good for you. You will get there eventually. I do believe that you should change your life style where possible. Change your diet. Do whatever you can to read up on what is good for your heart something may help. I don’t think we should take supplements because they can mess with your medication. Get plenty of sleep. Have a nap in the day if you can. It is a long road but only you can look after yourself. Good luck.

Hidden in reply to Gillybean123

Hello, Gillybean123. Oh, I'm already there on lifestyle, for sure! Have made loads of changes.

The challenge with that type of episode I experienced is that it's a physically-induced anxiety. Fortunately, the Flec & bit of Toprol calmed things down.

Plus, as I've learned from many experiences, if there's grief ready to be expressed, it's best to let it out. That helped immensely. From the Chinese Medicine point of view, they tend to see AF as an indication of much stuck old emotional energy trapped in the heart. This is why grieving is so important. I've found over the past months that it does help to grieve.

Thanks for your concern. I appreciate it very much and feel much better today.

Gillybean123 in reply to Hidden

Hi you, you are right about grief I have had my fair share and I think that’s why my first ablation which was perfect for 12 months and then I had a downward spiral with grieving for the next twelve months and I swear that’s why my A F came back with a vengeance. Never mind all that you sound very positive. So good luck xx

Hi ! Sorry to hear you are struggling a little hits us all at some point ! Are you taking any magnesium supplements, very good for anxiety and sleep I find ! Andy

Hidden in reply to Andyc934

Thanks, Andyc934. Oh yes, magnesium every day. I like the Calm powder that you make into a drink. I also take the Heart Calm supplement, by Vital Biologics. It has magnesium, potassium, and taurine.

Revere AF by Swedish Massage with oil and turmeric in just two months. I have already tried this on my father.

Yes, yes and oh YES! To your questions.

It is confusing, it is frustrating - take the pills and you feel terrible all of the time, don’t and your heart jitters. And where does it all end?

I think many of us have been exactly where you are today and know it will pass. Many of us struggle continuing to work and yet fear the consequences, especially financial if we don’t.

Doctors are the experts on the mechanics but we are the experts on how it really is to have this condition and how low it can bring you down, as Jedi so elequently stated.

Keep posting, I hope things change for you soon, know we know and care and are here to support. x

Hidden in reply to CDreamer

So helpful to feel understood, CDreamer! This has been the hardest part of dealing with AF. I hadn't even realized how challenging that had become till I came across this site and started experiencing the opposite.

AF is so humbling, isn't it? I've learned along the way the various things I was doing that unwittingly made it worse. Had to quickly change, learn and forgive myself, and just keep going and stay calm.

I've been really taking in how the people who are supposed to be helping can end up doing damage. It's taken a minute to really wrap my brain around that one. One must always be alert and ready to question the doc. It sure helps to have a functioning brain in order to do that!

Appreciate very much your care and concern and support.

AFib makes one feel anxious which is hardly surprising Your body is telling you something is not quite right. The fluttery feeling in the chest is disconcerting and when it is combined with irregular thumps you don’t feel at all right. We’ve all been there. You are not alone. Deep slow breathing does help.

I did too much heavy gardening which has completely put my back out and my osteopath has put 4 vertebrae back - so far and am on co-codamol. I am afraid the AFib and the ectopics are back but I know when everything calms down my heart will too and I can get back to doing things again.

This website is an excellent support because we are not alone. People who have not experienced AFib or ectopics cannot understand what it is like and how it can affect one’s confidence or one’s mental state.

As others have said keep calm and carry on. Try to carpe diem. Count your blessings. By and large we in the west are so lucky. Just imagine what it would be like to be a refugee or to live in fear of a regime or not to have enough food to eat.

Just writing about and sharing one’s problems is a help isn’t it?

Good luck to you.

Hidden in reply to GrannyE

Thanks, GrannyE. It does help to write and to know that there are people who understand and don't judge me for a rough patch. I feel so much better today as a result! The kindness and seeking practical solutions and the assurance of my EP helps to pull me right out of it. That and a good night's sleep.....which I have much more frequently now that I know to sleep on my right side or with my head and shoulders elevated, eat a light dinner early, and avoid certain foods. What a difference that has made!

Mari4325 in reply to Hidden

Nella what foods did you cut out? I am trying to read your posts as I have exactly the same experience going on with mean Doctors who try to medicate you with drugs that make you feel much worse than the Afib...I am also a new diagnosis of two months. I will try elevating my head and shoulders and I am looking for holistic approaches. I hope you don't mind if I ask questions along the way on your posts as I read them.


Hidden in reply to Mari4325

Hi Marilyn,

Happy to answer questions. It's nice to have some kind of response, however brief, as in a conversation. At times I've written lengthy replies to questions and never a heard a word back, which feels a little strange. Know what I mean? I enjoy the social aspect of the forum, so it's nice to develop connections while being helpful.

About diet, I did quite a revamp over a few years. I had a blood test that identified allergies, so I cut out gluten, dairy, eggs, and beans. Then I learned that grains didn't work well for me, as well as foods that cause inflammation. So that means no sugar and the only fruit I eat is blueberries.

I learned about FODMAPs (you can Google it) and found that high FODMAPs foods definitely don't agree with me, so I cut them out. More recently, my naturopath suggested that I quit eating fish, as it's very difficult to avoid mercury in fish. That seems to have helped a lot.

As for what I do eat, I'm a huge fan of roasted seaweed snacks. Seaweed is amazingly healthy and I'm certain that there are nutrients in it that my body really loves because I'll crave it if I haven't had my daily fix.

My diet is rather limited, but I really like the simplicity of it. It makes life so much easier, in terms of shopping and cooking. Everything is fresh and organic, from my local market. During this phase of making so many changes to support my heart, I really don't go out to dinner, so I don't have to worry about that. I have enjoyed a peaceful, simple, healthy existence these past months.

Here's a sample of what I eat.

Breakfast is a "cereal" I make myself, consisting of chopped walnuts, almonds, ground flaxseed, blueberries, and almond milk. Recently I switched to frozen organic blueberries after learning that they are actually healthier than fresh. They are grown to be frozen and so retain more nutrients than fresh, which lose them in transit. Fun fact that has saved me lots of money, too.

Lunch is steamed kale or chard, sweet potatoes, maybe roasted chicken or chicken liver (lots of CoQ10!) or pork. Dinner is some version of that, too. Maybe an avocado now and then, carrots, cucumbers.

Snacks are nuts and seaweed snacks.

Really important not to eat too much for dinner or late at night to avoid vagally-mediated AF.

Hope that helps! I have found that changing my diet has made a huge difference. I don't have energy dips, hunger pangs, etc. cause my meals fill me up and I've also managed to cut out what was causing bloating. That's what FODMAPs do to me.

Best wishes to you.

Mari4325 in reply to Hidden

I think people like to read more than respond most of the time. I am following your posts and have not quite caught up with all of them but the diet helps. I am in the process of working on my diet and hunting for a second opinion from a better Dr. His answer to everything appears no questions and more I am sure more questions will follow.


Good morning Nella

I hope you have passed through the storm and are in calmer waters now. I have just been granted earky retirement (was only 15 months off my teachers pension age of 60 ) ,mainly because I had tried everything I could to continue in my work but had come to the end of a long road of personal grief,coupled with AF. I was a community based teacher,working with children out of school for various reasons,and helping their parents to supportbtheir children.Like you,when AF hit,panic set in...makes it worse...viscious circle,as its hard to do deep breathig and mindfullness in front of students!!

I wonder if some of your feelings are tied up in a kind of mourning for the Pre AF person? I certainly do mourn that person myself,although i do also try and see that AF has probably actually made me more likely to be healthier in a weird way,because I took a long look at everything,diet,stress factors,exercise etc and began to say No I cant to more people!

I think we also grieve that we cant get a 100% cure,which when nowadays we almost expect medicine and surgery to have answers,is difficult to come to terms with.

Grief is a funny beast,sneaks up on you from behind when you least expect it.

As far as meds are concerned,I am in discussions about the merits and 'dis-merits' of rate control via betablockers(was on bisoprolol various dosages until last week) Nebivolol has been mentioned,as has Diltziaepam,but havent tried these yet.

Sending positive thoughts xx

Hidden in reply to wilsond

Thanks, wilsond, for your support. Very perceptive, wondering about grieving the earlier life. I wouldn't say it's that exactly, but there has definitely been grief related to the limitations.

Also, as I mentioned somewhere else, meeting all of you nice people and Dr. Gupta, I know there was a huge wave of emotion around the various awful experiences I've been through with doctors and their office staff. Meanness, nastiness, etc. A type of negligence, like around vagally-mediated AF and how beta blockers aren't great for it. Why did I just now learn about that and not anytime in the past 5 years with 3 different docs?? Now that my heart seems to be settling from the withdrawal of Toprol, I can see that it is better for me to be off of it and switch to PIP. If I have a flutter, it's nowhere as strong as before.

Of course, we must take every new discovery that's helpful, own it and move on as quickly as possible, I've learned; this little phase packed quite a punch, as I can see how I suffered rather needlessly for months simply from not being educated about fairly simple factors that make a big difference. This seems to be somewhat common in this AF world, I'm gathering.

I agree that AF has made me overall a healthier person, so there's actually a lot from the past I don't grieve. The episodes tend to signal that something's out of balance. I went through a challenging phase of needing to say no to people and dealing with some unpleasant reactions/responses. That kind of response is actually what set off the latest phase of episodes over a year ago, after 3 years AF-free. I'm certain it was important to set these boundaries, but I haven't filled my life yet with folks here, in the flesh, like the kind people here on this site. I'll get there.

I have friends who are teachers so I know how stressful this job can be. If you think that the job is triggering AFib episodes, ie if they started when you returned to full time work , then you should inform your doctor if you have not done so already.

As for the availability of different medicines, Inwas offered Sotalol or Flecainide when I was diagnosed around 2months ago. I have been ok(ish) on Sotalol apart from one episode when I reduced the dose below the recommended level. So you could ask your doctor about an Sotalol as an alternative, but, of course, everybody’s AFib is different and it doesn’t follow that what is right for you is right for me. Have you had a a lengthy chat with a consultant about your AFib and the best medication for you, as GPs are often not that knowledgeable?

Hidden in reply to Samazeuilh

Thanks, Samazeuilh. I've had chats and will meet up with my cardiologist next week, too. This storm has settled and I feel so much better. That's a relief! I appreciate your kindness.

Can't add anything to the good advice already given, just keep on keeping on Nella423 it's hard sometimes! Sending hugs and positive vibes X

Hidden in reply to Dianemary

Your hugs and positive vibes are greatly appreciated, Dianemary!

Hello Nella - I hope today is better for you. I think every one of us knows exactly what you are going through but the upside is that - there is an upside. It’s amazing when we hit the wall that there is a way round it, over it or through the door that we find in it. The devil of it is that all sorts of things seem to conspire when we are at all down. I. can usually get a bit of a boost at those times with my mantra ‘this too shall pass’.

I admire your ability to teach with AF - what an amazing accomplishment. I was a college lecturer in my past life, teaching mostly 18-20 year old male students and no way on this earth could I have coped even with the back and forth of the job with AF. Well done, but don’t knock yourself out for being human!!

Sorry I can’t help with the drug question but send you very best wishes. xx

Hidden in reply to Finvola

Thanks so much, Finvola! I'm feeling much better today. All the kindness and support has made a big difference. Along with just reaching out to the docs for practical help.

I'm reminded that my EP really is a very nice guy. He does know about vagally-mediated AF (I have purged my feelings around "and why did you never mention it to me????!!"), and I'm grateful there was no dismissiveness or questioning of my research findings. I'm off the Toprol and know this is better for me; helps to have his reassurance on that, too. I will just take a little with the Flec if I have an episode. He suggested boosting the PIP Flec to 150 mg to knock the episode out faster than the 4 hrs the 100 mg has taken. I'm happy with these practical steps and, of course, it's much better to just reach out and ask, no matter the emotional storm.

About teaching....I had an interesting job teaching at a large art and design college that allowed me to essentially be paid to go to art school, as I was assigned to the art classes to assist international students with their language challenges. Mostly great fun, but it involved traipsing all around San Francisco to the various buildings, just loads of stimulation. The thought of all of that physical stress now makes my head spin! Plus the institution became increasingly stressful as a workplace and I'm sure all this contributed to AF in the first place. But we learn and move on!

I created my own private practice and now do most of my teaching via video, which is great fun. It's cut out all that stress from running around. There are challenges to running a business and bringing in work, but it's worth it.

Oh I feel for you I have just come out of hospital after an svt attack which lasted 8 hours, finally they got rid of it with the valsalva manoeuvre , first time I have had that done but it worked! Have decided to have the pacemaker and seeing specialist on Tuesday. Am off the bisoprolol and on only 50 mg of flecanide twice a day and this is obviously not working, if my flecanide is given in a higher dose along with the bisoprolol my resting heart rate is dropping too low so this is why the pacemaker has been discussed.

Hidden in reply to MydogBrandy

Thanks, MydogBrandy. It's quite a puzzle, isn't it, sorting out the meds? Definitely worth keeping at it, though, I find. Best wishes to you.

Newbie here. 1st time posting. I’ve had two catheter ablations for my afib. The 2nd (2 years ago) seems to have resolved the rapid heart rate and flutter. Trying to get back to exercising again. Just thought I’d mention that if, as you stated, you like the acupuncture treatments, you might benefit from an acupressure mat. It’s a very helpful tool that I use daily along with yoga, stretching and core exercises. Helps to relax. Nameste 🙏

Hidden in reply to PirateJeff

Thanks, PirateJeff. I'll ask my acupuncturist today about the acupressure mat. Sounds very interesting! I'll message you to ask more about the exercises you do. I'm curious to learn more about exercises that are especially good for vagally-mediated AF, since it seems that some kinds of stretching, like bending from the waist, isn't so good for it. I appreciate your comment.

There’s a website for acupressure mats:

They’re sold on amazon also. I’ve developed a quite elaborate mat routine, lots of different positions, even standing on it bare foot. Bare skin is best and it pinches at first then turns to a wonderful warm relaxing feeling. Good for circulation, pain and stress.

Not sure about the stretching regimen for you. I was running marathons until the afib started. I’m pretty much just winging it with my stretching, core and yoga routine. I’ve been trying to slowly start easing a treadmill jog of two miles every other day. I’ve always had a very difficult time with medications...don’t handle them well at all, so Holistic approach is my choice.

You seem far more informed than me regarding your afib. Probably best to check with your doctor on allowable healthy exercise.

I was lucky to have a great doctor in Seattle, highly recommended, who was able to pinpoint the exact spot on the second ablation.

Heart rate continually 50’s—60’s.

My plan is to slowly get back to running and do a half marathon next June, hopefully.


cassie46 in reply to PirateJeff

I looked into acupressure mats a few months ago. Several in depth reviews said not to use if taking anticoagulants - did not say why. So I did not buy one.


PirateJeff in reply to cassie46

Thank you Cassie. You are so right. Makes sense that it would not be advisable to use the acupressure mat while on any anticoagulants. So glad you caught that.

Hi is your Dr. Gupta in California kaiser? I just chose a Dr. Gupta here for my Ablation but have not met him yet, chose him due to his experience and being the director.

I too feel like I’m at a wall with my symptoms, I feel helpless. They are all the time, I’ve been missing work, and doing nothing at home much of the time. I hate it. I hate the burden I put on my family, I’m always at the doctors, my grandparents always watch my son while I’m there. I don’t want to be a bother to people. I rarely find a doc that takes me serious because how young I am in heart terms.

Hidden in reply to AmbieBambie

Hi AmbieBambie, this post is from 8 months ago & I'm in quite a different place now! I encourage you to read my other posts to see the progress I've made and the changes I've made along the way.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, of York Cardiology in England, is the Dr. Gupta I was referring to. He has a YouTube channel and there are posts on him here at the forum. I learned more from him about AF than any doc I consulted here in CA in person. So he hasn't been a doc I've consulted with in person. I encourage you to check out his videos.

If you read my other posts, you'll see the many resources I've discovered along the way that have helped me a lot.

Where are you in California?

It's interesting that you responded to this particular thread because it's reminded me just how far I have come in the past 8 months. I just wrote about that in another post.

The most helpful changes I made have been respectfully listening to my cardio & EP, but then deciding for myself what I wanted to do. They wanted me to take Flecainide daily, which was intolerable. I, too, felt dismissed and suffered other rather dreadful treatment by docs and office staff, and so I decided to keep looking for a cardio with whom I felt comfortable and would really listen to me. I found a female cardiologist; if you're near Walnut Creek, CA, you could check her out, though I don't think she's in Kaiser. Dr. Carolyn Lacey.

My take on AF is that it's telling us (in no uncertain terms, most of the time!!) to make changes in our lives in order to create balance. It takes courage and determination and a willingness to really listen to the body and what it needs. It's necessary to educate oneself, too. In my experience, EPs & cardios taught me basically nothing. Everything that's been the most valuable, I learned here, from other patients in other forums and from my own research.

I've come to see how crucial it was for me to move on from the dismissive docs. That makes matters worse for the heart. There are docs who are not dismissive; at the same time, the training of cardios & EPs historically has not been holistic in nature, so this is why it's so common for them to be dismissive.

The work of Dr. Stephen Sinatra is extremely helpful. He's an integrative cardiologist, which I think will be the wave of the future.

His son is a naturopath in Mill Valley, CA. I consult with him and he's helped me a lot.

Best wishes to you.

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