High heart rate after ablation: I had an... - AF Association

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High heart rate after ablation


I had an ablation 2 weeks ago. Blood pressure went up for a short time but is normal now. A couple of days ago my heart rate went up and has stayed up since. It has been in the range of 113 to 129. I feel lightheaded, short of breath and tired. My doctor doesn't seem alarmed about it. Has anyone had a problem with fast heart rate after an ablation?

16 Replies

Yes, unfortunately recovery can be difficult and may take some time getting the meds right. I was very concerned with my recovery conditions but the good people on this site comforted with their advice and stories of their recovery. My advice is take it easy, much easier than you think you should, if your condition changes see you Doc but expect your condition to change quite a bit during recovery. I have posted quite a bit about my recovery which may be worth you reading.


As we explain in our fact sheet on recovery from ablation raised heart rate post ablation is very common but your does seem a little on the high side. May I suggest that you by-pass your GP and speak to the arrhythmia nurse where you had the ablation. It may be something which needs to be treated. If you do not have such contact details then ring the EP's secretary and explain your concern.

in reply to BobD

I echo the advice of BobD . When my heart rate went up after an ablation I was given a cardioversion. I don't think it's a good idea to keep at that rate right after an ablation and can understand how you must be feeling. Please call the hospital where you had your procedure and ask to speak to your consultants AF nurse.


Thank you for your comments. I saw the doctor yesterday and I have a cardioversion scheduled for December 26. I think (not certain) my AFib is normal now. I just still have the fast heart rate after six weeks. I hope it works. I'm glad yours was successful.

Mine was high too. I think not quite that high but resting over 100. I found it hard to sleep. It gradually improved with recovery. I'd keep making sure your ep is informed where it's at but as long as he is not worried try not to be too.

Also ablation knocked me for 6 for 2 weeks and was not up to much for a few more after than. Recovery can be more serious than some literature makes it sound. But you get better and if it's worked it's great!

My heart rate ran in the 90's for months after, now a year later resting rate is 82 but I feel fine. I do think that into 100's without exertion calls for some concern!

Like others, mine too was raised but only about 10 to 20 bpm above my normal resting rate. It took almost a year to return to normal. I would echo others and urge you to contact your ep.

Once you settle down, give this a try. It may stop your afib or at least decrease it's intensity:


After 9 years of trying different foods and logging EVERYTHING I ate, I found sugar (and to a lesser degree, salt – i.e. dehydration) was triggering my Afib. Doctors don't want to hear this - there is no money in telling patients to eat less sugar. Each person has a different sugar threshold - and it changes as you get older, so you need to count every gram of sugar you eat every day (including natural sugars in fruits, etc.). My tolerance level was 190 grams of sugar per day 8 years ago, 85 grams a year and a half ago, and 60 grams today, so AFIB episodes are more frequent and last longer (this is why all doctors agree that afib gets worse as you get older). If you keep your intake of sugar below your threshold level your AFIB will not happen again (easier said than done of course). It's not the food - it's the sugar (or salt - see below) IN the food that's causing your problems. Try it and you will see - should only take you 1 or 2 months of trial-and-error to find your threshold level. And for the record - ALL sugars are treated the same (honey, refined, agave, natural sugars in fruits, etc.). I successfully triggered AFIB by eating a bunch of plums and peaches one day just to test it out. In addition, I have noticed that moderate exercise (7-mile bike ride or 5-mile hike in the park) often puts my Afib heart back in to normal rhythm a couple hours later. Don’t know why – perhaps you burn off the excess sugars in your blood/muscles or sweat out excess salt?? I also found that strenuous exercise does no good – perhaps you make yourself dehydrated??

I'm pretty sure that Afib is caused by a gland(s) - like the Pancreas - or an organ that, in our old age, is not working well anymore and excess sugar or dehydration is causing them to send mixed signals to the heart - for example telling the heart to beat fast and slow at the same time - which causes it to skip beats, etc. I can't prove that (and neither can my doctors), but I have a very strong suspicion that that is the root cause of our Afib problems. I am working on this with a Nutritionist and hope to get some definitive proof in a few months.

Also, in addition to sugar, if you are dehydrated - this will trigger AFIB as well. It seems (but I have no proof of this) that a little uptick of salt in your blood is being treated the same as an uptick of sugar - both cause AFIB episodes. (I’m not a doctor – it may be the sugar in your muscles/organs and not in your blood, don’t know). In any case you have to keep hydrated, and not eat too much salt. The root problem is that our bodies are not processing sugar/salt properly and no doctor knows why, but the AFIB seems to be a symptom of this and not the primary problem, but medicine is not advanced enough to know the core reason that causes AFIB at this time. You can have a healthy heart and still have Afib – something inside us is triggering it when we eat too much sugar or get (even a little) dehydrated. Find out the core reason for this and you will be a millionaire and make the cover of Time Magazine! Good luck! - Rick Hyer

PS – there is a study backing up this data you can view at:


Thanks to all that made comments about my fast heart rate after an ablation. It's comforting that it will probably improve with time.

This is listed as an after-effect if ablation. It doesn’t say how long it might last:

“What to expect

Immediately after your ablation

You may experience a:

* sore throat

* tenderness around the groin site

* some chest discomfort

* some AF or atrial tachycardia (AT). An AT is faster than normal heartbeat, which feels regular in nature and can occur following an AF ablation.”

This abstract suggests that a fast regular heartbeat may be a *good* thing after an ablation-a pointer to the ablation having been successful. See: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/2...

My ablation was in 2017 it took a year to completely settle now I feel like a new person go dancing Jive and have no problems with my heart so good luck and rest when you can.

My EP said it can take up to 6 weeks to fully heal and see actual results. I had the same issue, my heart rate is still constantly 130s/140s and it's been 6 months since my ablation. I go back in on the 9th to see if a 2nd will fix it once and for all. Since my ablation they've had to add on 2 blood pressure meds and a rhythm med. Hopefully yours will start to improve!

in reply to Catt33

I'm sorry you're still having trouble with a high heart rate after 6 months. I hope your doctor figures out the best way to help you soon. I know it's very frustrating. I'm frustrated and it's just been a few days that my heart rate has been high. Did the doctor mention a cardioversion ?

in reply to Catt33

Are you saying that your blood pressure went higher after your ablation? That is what has happened to me, and I am still struggling to bring my blood pressure down. What are your blood pressure meds and your rhythm med. I have had three ablations and have always been put on a rhythm med after the ablation.

in reply to cuore

My blood pressure is usually normal to low but after the ablation it went up to 151/90. That just lasted for a couple of days and then it went back to normal. I developed a very fast heart rate about a week after the ablation. It ranged between 113 to 129. I was going to call my EP about medication when, strangely, it went down to normal today after about a week. I am so happy and relieved. I just hope it stays in the normal range. It seems like every day is a new day after an ablation. You just never know what to expect from one day to the next. I wish you the best on your blood pressure and heart rhythms.

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