Cardio version : My doctor wants me to have a... - AF Association

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Cardio version

Janith
Janith
55 Replies

My doctor wants me to have a cardio version ... HELP! He wants to do it tomorrow morning. I am in afib and in hospital.

I am terrified.

Are they safe?

55 Replies
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Dawsonmackay

It is SO routine in the world of cardio programs, that it is almost not worth mentioning that IT IS no longer an ordeal to experience. How's that? I've had two and it was ho-hum.

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Buffafly

Lucky you, some people wait months 😀

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Dawsonmackay

The question that she asked was not about the wait. I waited for mine just like you.

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Janith
Janith
in reply to Dawsonmackay

I’m in US ...

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Dawsonmackay
Dawsonmackay
in reply to Janith

Even better! How are you feeling from the range if replies?

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Janith
Janith
in reply to Dawsonmackay

Much better!

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Buffafly

I've never had one, just channeling Pollyanna....

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Dawsonmackay

You’re really missing the shock of your life.🌞

3 likes
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Samazeuilh
Samazeuilh
in reply to Buffafly

This is often because you have to be adequately anticoagulated (ideally for a month) before the procedure takes place. They often like to do a TOE as well.

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BobD
BobDVolunteer

No problem. Fairy juice in your arm and whilst you are away with teh faires yoru heat pops back into rhythm.

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jeanjeannie50

Absolutely nothing to it, as far as the many cardioversions I've had have been concerned and I've had lots. You'll be given a general anaesthetic and will know nothing about it at all. The whole procedure takes about 5-10 minutes at the most. When I wake up in normal sinus rhythm, the feeling is like no other and I'm overjoyed and singing the praises of everyone concerned . Honestly, I go to have them willingly.

Don't make a fuss now, or you will feel silly after it's done and you realise how simple they are.

Please report back to us afterwards.

Big hug, you'll be fine.

Jean

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Bagrat

Mine was a real non event. Done by 4pm home by 8pm ( and I live quite a way from hospital!) Just a lovely feeling when you wake up.

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Mikee69

I loved the ones I had, like BobD says, a shot of fairy juice, and wake up with a calm heart a few minutes later, it was such a good feeling, I skipped out of the hospital after my regulation NHS cup of brown beverage (think it was tea) and a dried up tuna sandwich

All the best

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FancyPants54

Oh lovely. I'm due my first in 2 weeks. Looking forward to that sandwich already!

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Visitingcat

I spent a night in a and e and the cardio ward last time I got stuck in afib, someone mentioned they may do a cardioversion the next day and ( after having one a few years previously ) I refused any breakfast and dinner in the hopes that they would do it.

They did not and I was so disappointed, I ended up waiting another miserable 6 weeks before it was done and I was back in normal rhythm again. I lost all last summer from June to the middle of sept to afib, It is so disabling for me. Don’t be scared, I hope you have it done and are soon feeling much better.

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S11m

They are safe.

I have had three.

The main concern is that it might not work - or would not immediately and permanently put you back in Sinus Rhythm.

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fairgo45

I made the mistake of looking at a cardioversion on you tube I wanted to know what happened and scared myself it was as others have said just a pleasant experience over in no time and great to be back in NSR

I had quite a few before ablations even one straight after there is absolutely nothing to worry about please dont you tube it though as I learnt later a lot of it is fake

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macdongr

Yup, piece of cake!

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Bettiehough

I had about 16 altogether before I got a pacemaker. Nothing to worry about. Best is when you wake up and your heart is back to SR

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TomTomorrow

Hi Janith— I had about ten cardioversions over about eight years, all but one immediately successful and allowed me, with medication, to go a year or two with normal sinus rhythm. (Eventually I had an ablation, and have had normal rhythm for 18 months and counting.)

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Samazeuilh

I don’t know if you have already had the cardioversion by the time you read this; however, here are two accounts from Mayo Clinic and Royal Brompton Hospital (the latter is a bit more detailed). The risks don’t sound too substantial, although it is understandable that you are anxious before such a procedure:

mayoclinic.org/tests-proced...

rbht.nhs.uk/our-services/ca...

I would insist that they explain the risks if they have not already done so.

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seasider18

I was told prior to my pacemaker being fitted that the cath lab is the safest place in the world :-)

After my last cardioversion the nurse asked if I remembered anything about it. When I said 'No' she asked if I was sure so I assume that I came round during it. I felt tired when I got home and went to bed and slept until my wife woke me up seven hours later for a very late dinner. Then back to bed and slept for about twelve hours and I'm an insomniac . Wish I could have another night like that but because of the size of my right atrium they say another cardioversion will not work.

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Janith
Janith
in reply to seasider18

Right ventricle? Are you sure that you don’t mean left ventricle? My cardiologist said that my left ventricle is huge which makes me an excellent candidate for cardio version. He didn’t mention the right one?

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seasider18
seasider18
in reply to Janith

When I questioned why I had not been offered another cardioversion after two previous ones had lasted over a year until another medical procedure had disturbed my vagus nerve. I was told that the echo had shown that my right atrium size showed it as unlikely that the cardioversion would be successful. It can be either atrium that is the culprit. However if they first do a cryoablation it might change the size of the right atrium and they can then do a cardioversion.

There are quite a few online studies on this.

sciencedirect.com/science/a...

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/901...

cardiovcl.sld.cu/corsalud/2...

circ.ahajournals.org/conten...

jcmr-online.biomedcentral.c...

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seasider18
seasider18
in reply to Janith

I said right atrium in my case not ventricle.

my.clevelandclinic.org/heal...

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Janith
Janith
in reply to seasider18

I was still woozy yesterday!!

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seasider18
seasider18
in reply to Janith

Did you have a good result ?

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Janith
Janith
in reply to seasider18

😴 ... tired, but wonderful experience! He had to “zap” me one time ... of course you are sleeping ... felt nothing! The nurses awakened me with glee in their 🥰 hearts! Now l am being babied! The result thus far is perfect!

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seasider18
seasider18
in reply to Janith

Long may it continue and be allowed to enjoy your life again.

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Shagg

Hi Janith, it's a piece of Cake. You will start counting backwards for a couple of seconds and next minute your be in recovery

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Nick1957

Go for it ''tis a doddle! What's to fear nsr all the way! If you've taken you anticoagulant meds for 4 weeks regularly then go for it! 😀

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JaneFinn

Just seen your post from yesterday- wanted to say I’m thinking of you for this morning and hope it all goes beautifully :) Xx

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jons45

Hi Janith, our experience is my wife has had about 15 cardio versions in the last 5 years also 2 ablation's which only were effective for a short time. After a lot of prayer she reverted to sinus rhythm 8 month ago now living with out AF.

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tunybgur

Nothing to worry about, no knives, just a bit of anesthetic and before you know it you'll be back in sinus rhythm.

Only downside is that it's sometimes not a permanent fix and you might need additional meds or treatments to keep you there. My first one lasted for 3 months before a stressful situation put me back into AF, meds have since kept me in SR.

I think it's important after the treatment to avoid any triggers that may cause a recurrence, stress is one, try not to worry too much, also caffiene, alcohol.....check on the web for triggers.

Good luck, and don't worry.

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RHSJ

Janith, Cardioversion is quite common, and considered very safe. You will be given a general anesthesia and you will be shocked (similar to what you see on TV). You won’t feel a thing. The procedure is literally over in seconds. You will spend more time in prep and recovery. You will then go home; normally you will not spend the night in the hospital. Cardioversion is intended to get your heart back into NSR and has the best success rate when your heart has NOT been in a-fib for a long time. It is frequently the first procedure that doctors like to try. Having said that, I would suggest you look into chemical version (medications) if the cardiovert does not work, before looking at ablation. I had two ablations SHORTLY after a failed cardiovert only to discover that medications would have saved me the cost and hassle. But as for your cardio vert, try to relax. I know it’s scary; I was terrified also, but all will go well.

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FancyPants54

I'm due my first in 2 weeks. Not exactly looking forward to it because anaesetic disagrees with me. But it will be nice to be in NSR. Just hoping it sticks because I've been left in Afib for 11 months with no intervention and the beta blockers are dragging me down.

Hope you feel better soon.

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Sean_C

I’ve had three and would have a dozen more without hesitation. The relief is pretty much immediate. Sean

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levings

Don't worry I have had two four shocks in total, you really won't remember, you will come round to a cup of tea and a sandwich. Let us know how it all goes.

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Jajarunner

Agree with all except it took me a month to recover my full vigour after first (48 hours of afib) and three months after second (5.5 weeks of afib). But I'm a fitness type and so do demand a lot of my body .

Hope it al, goes well

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Steve_The_Tyke

I am having one tomorrow as well, got to be at hospital 7am

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Janith

Don’t worry for a second!

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pixienick

My husband has had over 13 cardio inversions although they are scary i feel they are safe and probably necessary to get back in rhythm.

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Jct9841

It was a simple experience. Had to be shocked twice to get in nsr. No memory of event due to sedation. However it did not hold and ended up getting 2 ablations. so far so good. good luck.

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Mollybear

I am surprised at the attitude of others on this forum. I am in the US, I was probably hospitalized 15 times over the years in A Fib (before I got my PIP). Any time cardioversion was mentioned by a resident, nurse or PA, my cardiologist said that it was only to be used as a last resort. They always gave me time to convert using a variety of drugs. Sometimes the first drug worked, sometimes the second drug. The last time I was in the hospital, it was the 3rd drug, Flecainide, that did the trick. Every hospitalization was 3-4 days long while they ran tests trying to find the cause. They never did find a reason and all the doctors agreed nothing is wrong with my heart.

And, of course they never looked at my low salt, low fat, high carb diet and continued to feed me carbs galore while in the hospital! Now that I have proved I can trigger an episode with a carb fest and can avoid having any episodes by eating a higher fat, low carb diet with no salt restrictions, I am especially thankful that I never had a cardioversion.

Within a week of my last hospitalization 15 years ago, Felcainide became my PIP. On release from the hospital, it became obvious that I had no need for it daily, nor could I tolerate it and still be able to function enough to drive and work.

My doctor said doing something that requires anesthesia, and can result in memory loss, is not to be entered into lightly. He is an older doctor and said that he had seen too many long term side effects in his long career.

Perhaps it is the insurance companies ( or NHS in the UK )driving this push to cardioversion to get you out of the hospital quicker, without regard to any long term consequences.

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Samazeuilh

I agree with what you have written here (and with what your doctor said about cardioversion being a last resort). And you raise a valid point about the potential for memory loss-this applies when general anaesthetic is used during an ablation too. Did your doctor say any more on this topic? It’s one of the concerns I have as I am fairly. soon to have an ablation with a general.

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Janith
Janith
in reply to Samazeuilh

It isn’t a general during the cardio version ... it is a very mild sedative. It is in your system for minutes and the cardio version lasts one second!

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Samazeuilh
Samazeuilh
in reply to Janith

Ok-I didn’t know that it could be done with a sedative. I have still to decide on whether my ablation will be done with a general or a sedative.

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Janith
Janith
in reply to Samazeuilh

It’s a sedative done intravenously . I think that your ablation will be done under a general ... they make a little hole in your heart (at least that’s what the doctor told me) ...

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Tantaanna

I agree with Jeanie absolutely feel wonderful in sinus rhythm. Also understand your apprehension- I have had more than one but will always remember the first one- the anxiety and concerns I had

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Janith

I’m done!! What a delightful experience! One zap and l am in sinus rhythm and back in my room! Thank you again loved ones for your feedback. Without you guys l don’t think that l would have done it! I wish that l could hug each and every one of you!

Jan

4 likes
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Samazeuilh
Samazeuilh
in reply to Janith

I’m glad things have worked out well for you!

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Visitingcat

I’m so glad it worked for you, I found this fabulous forum by googling “scared of cardioversion” which I was 6 years ago when I first was told I needed one. It sounds so horrendous....

I spent a good while reading everyone’s experiences and that it was nothing to worry about and by the time I went in I was calm and looking forward to it!

I did not feel a lot better straight away that first time, I’d been in afib a good while but within a couple of weeks I felt fantastic, I felt a huge difference this last time. I’m so grateful for having it done.

Take it easy for a week or so and look after yourself, best wishes : )

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Dawsonmackay

Just checking in... How are you doing now?

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Janith
Janith
in reply to Dawsonmackay

Hi ... l feel a little out of it this morning but oh so happy to be out of afib. I have a burning feeling on the outside skin where they apparently performed the procedure and all l can think about are these two darling nurses who woke me up “Jan, wake up, Jan, wake up ... it’s over ... you are back in sinus rhythm ... “. They were dressed in their colorful nurse outfits and it was all so darling! Both doctors were gone. It was an enchanting experience, really ... and the sleepy medicine iv made it an illusionary feeling. I would do it again in a heartbeat 💗!

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Dawsonmackay
Dawsonmackay
in reply to Janith

That burning feeling, I just call it sunburn. Put some coconut oil on it or aloe vera gel and in less than a week, your skin will be mended. Glad you are in back in Afib! You see it really was ho-hum except for the IV tranq!

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