RF ablation today. Update!: Hello Everyone... - AF Association

AF Association

25,889 members31,124 posts

RF ablation today. Update!

Lilypocket profile image

Hello Everyone ( who is interested 😉)

Had my RF ablation this morning under GA. Have just seen the EP and he explained what he found and did:

1 Pulmonary veins (of course that old party pooper!)

2 Flutter

NOW thirdly and most interestingly I had what he called "dead floating cells " chilling in the Atria ( zombie cells lol) that were interferring/interrupting the normal signals in the Atria - hence things like bending over, just sitting or other innocuous triggers could set things off but I could still have a glass of wine - those rogue cells knew when not to interfere! I'm sure some of you can relate to this so that is why I posted it. It may not be vagal for some of you but "dead floaters" could be the culprits.

It took one and a half hours in total and he has taken me off all meds except anti coagulation as from now. He doesn't like Flecainide and feels it can provoke Afib. I begged to stay on a small dose of Bisoprolol as going to 3.75 yesterday to nothing today makes me nervous so I'll take 1.25 tonight.

Heart a nice steady 75 (without medication and I'm lying down - imposed for 6 hours) so fingers crossed .

Please feel free to ask me anything.

Take care xxxx

88 Replies

Very well done. Heres wishing you a speedy recovery.

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to meadfoot

Thank you Meadfoot! How are you getting on? X

meadfoot profile image
meadfoot in reply to Lilypocket

Manageable currently thank you. Wishing you all the best.

So pleased to hear that all went well for you Lily. Onwards and upwards to a better life now.

Don't let this lot here know about you needing your chest squeezed from behind. They'll be queueing up to help you. 😅😂🤣

Hope you are feeling well. When did you have your procedure, this morning , or afternoon?


Hi JeanIt was at 9h this morning and I was back in my room at 12h. The procedure took 1h 1/2. As I posted he found 3 things. His colleagues say he works very fast but he is a nice young chap who is very friendly and easy to talk to. A nurse here told me yesterday "He operated on my father-in-law" when I asked about him. I think if the medical profession trust him it's a good start. He seems very ( modestly) confident in his work. The only thing he was not happy about ( nobodies fault) was my choking and coughing after the procedure which put stress on his work. Hopefully it hasn't put a dampner on my recovery.

Please do all queue up for hug it never hurt and is essentiel for our well being.

😅Last thing while you're on Jean I have been given Pantoprazole . Is an anti acid really necessary for heart recovery? Never had acid before.


I'd take it for a few weeks Lily, or you could find your stomach gets sore from acid. Can't remember what I did, but I know I would have been hesitant about taking it too.

I guess the swelling inside can cause acid to leak from the stomach, it's quite a common thing to happen.


The Dr never mentioned. It just turned up with the pradaxa this evening. It's true my tummy is bloated- why is this? Does the heart swell? X

Do you mean the Pantoprazole? I don't know about the heart swelling after an ablation, have never heard it mentioned, but it has been irritated by the burning. The stomach may if it's affected by acid leaking. x

I may be as thick as a whale omelette ( Let's see who knows who said that in which comedy programme - answers on a postcard please ) but how does something done inside the heart cause stomach acid? Xx

Because the heart is right next to the stomach. Explain in depth FlapJack or BobD if you can.

Then it makes sense. Dont want it burning hole . I shall take it now with à banane. Dont want to take it too long we need some acidité. Vow long did you tzke it?Thank goodness for this forum the EP never mentioned it. My tummy is all bloated and sore , normal I suppose?

Me no understand your Chinese! Sorry, I can't remember what I did yesterday, let alone how long I took acid inhibitors for years ago. I don't remember my stomach being sore or bloated at any time.

Or CDreamer

Ppiman profile image
Ppiman in reply to Lilypocket

All is looking good. Well done.

As I understand matters, the oesophagus in some of use presses tightly against the left atrial wall; and in some that wall is also paper thin. This allows a lot of seriously unwanted heat transfer from the catheter to the oesophagus, and this can cause irritation. The PPI drug stops all acid from the stomach which could add further irritation to this, so, if it was irritated, it will now heal far more quickly.

I have never heard of rogue dead floating atrial cells and cannot find any reference to them. How interesting!



It takes one to know one 😅🤣😂

True! x

What rascals we are eh?! Im putting it down to the GA what's your excuse Jean 😆

The shock of the camera being put up my nose and down my throat today!😣

Poor you. Hope it wasn't too distressing and you get some answers 😞

Interestingly when I had that done to look at vocal chorus I was fine ( 12 years ago so maybe I've changed). But now if water goes up my nose and inadvertantly the wrong way I choke.

Hope you're ok Jean

Yes all well thanks. x

Ducky2003 profile image
Ducky2003 in reply to Lilypocket

Most folk are given some sort of "prazole" after an ablation as the oesophagus can become irritated by the burning/freezing as it is in such close proximity to the heart. To head off any issues at the pass, they give you a PPI, usually for 6 weeks. Here's to a swift recovery for you.

Singwell profile image
Singwell in reply to Lilypocket

I never had this and am known to have acid reflux. If you'd rather not take the PPI it's reasonable to ask if you can use Gaviscon Advanced liquid form instead. It's an alginate that forms a layer over the stomach contents after food and stops the acid coming up. Used correctly its very effective. Lots of singers use it, which is why I know about it.

MJZaw profile image
MJZaw in reply to Lilypocket

I was prescribed an antacid for a period of time after my cryoablation. If I recall correctly, they didn't want to risk exacerbating any possible esophageal irritation due to the tube being down my throat during GA.

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to MJZaw

That makes sense. X

Good to hear do your nice steady rate 💕 wishing you a good recovery ❤️‍🩹

Great news, very interesting re the breathing. I do have a very sensitive throat especially since a long spinal op and asthma as well and when I woke from the anaesthetic I was confused and thought I had been drowned and kept gasping huge gulps of air, couldn’t speak so I clutched my chest and they thought I felt sick. Quite put me off a repeat experience.

Best wishes 💖

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Buffafly

HiExactly how I felt , drowning and disorientated. I kept trying to explain between gulps this happens to me as over reactive throat. But the nurse implied it was a panic attack and I should calm down and keep still . Not helpful.

A drop of water going the wrong way has exactly the same effect as well.

Don't thnk it was being intubated and the GA that did it or they wouldnt have been able to do the operation. So for other people reading this don't be put off a GA - that went well. The Dr did mention aspirating me because of excess mucous and giving anti asthmatique medication. I think being aspirated while coming round ( but I wasnt aware) set off my attack. That why I absolutely didn't want à TOE. It would not have ended well. Next time I have an operation I'll say I have this problem so they stop thinking I'm just being anxious and panicking. Ridiculous.


Sometimes I only have to inhale and I can choke. Takes me ages to stop and breathe normally. Odd you talking about that as I've been to our local hospital about that very thing today. x

That is very interesting let's PM about it as its a bit off subject here. It's very frightening isnt it. X

Hi lily pocket glad to hear it all went well apart from the asmathic attack at the end that must of been scary...but at least its done now and hopefully you will recover quickly and start to feel better...thanks for letting us know how it went ,,, all the best and take care...

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Andyb7612

Thank you Andy!Wishing you all the best too.

Glad it went well, and so quickly only 1 1/2 hrs. Speedy recovery

Wishing you a speedy recovery Lilypocket. They say you live and learn ! Zombie cells ! I had never heard of this until now , I'm pleased you have shared this though . Loved your post, it made me laugh especially the wine comment 😄 May I ask where you had your ablation performed ?

Feet up. TV on. and take it easy.All the best.


Hope all goes smoothly with your recovery

Thanks X

Well done, thanks for sharing this. Interesting!Take care now xx

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to wilsond

Thanks! How are you doing? Xx

wilsond profile image
wilsond in reply to Lilypocket

Absolutely fine,nsr still.🙂🙂🙌 Groin area twinges still if I forget and do things like weeding etc.Good luck Lily xx

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to wilsond

My groin is absolutely fine - no pain and no bruising! They put a stitch in the vein then à compression dressing and then a tight wide elastic bandage . I looked like I was wearing half à loin cloth 😅. But the result is very satisfactory. I just have low level indigestion which I suppose is normal. I'm taking Omopazarole(?). X

Really pleased to hear that all went well. Apart from your "choking" experience, which sounds really unpleasant, it must be good to have a calm heart again.

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Nannysue1

So far so good but as advised will wait for the 3 month blanking to end 🤞🤞

Firstly, may you be well! And cutting down on the Bisoprolol sounds sensible to me. Later you might try every other day and see how you ho. But discuss with your arrhythmia nurse. That's interesting about the rogue cells - I thought they only hung out around the pulmonary veins. Lucky you and the vino! Take it easy, follow the advice abd stay in the cool next week.

Well done .

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to kalgs

Thank you! X

Hope you have a gentle and successful recovery.I was on lansoprazole for 6 weeks following both of my ablations. This is common practice as others have explained.

I was also advised to stay on heart meds but I guess different surgeons have different views on that.

Really hoping all goes to plan now. Read the helpful recovery leaflets and take it very easy. 🌸


🙂In fact he has made me a prescription of low dose Bisoprolol in the end but still thinks I don't need them. But I didn't like the idea of suddenly stopping 3.75 mg. I think it's more of a crutch in his opinion but at least I feel it helps during the blanking period.

Take care x

Good stuff. Best of luck to you. X

Thanks X

Hi Lily. Thought I'd post here about the acid reflux problem and why your EP might have prescribed proton pump inhibitor temporarily. The stomach, heart and diaphragm are all surprisingly close together. The diaphragm literally nudges up the the heart and is the boundary between the gut region and the lungs. Off the top of my head I can't describe the anatomy quite accurately but if you look at a diagram you'll see. Imagine lying down, or sitting a bit slumped on the sofa and you can see these three would be even closer together because they're not fixed to bone (though the diaphragm has some attachments). And they can all move - they have to be movable. When we eat, acid is released in the stomach so assist with the digestive process - crucially acid is needed to trigger the enzyme pepsin to digest proteins. When people get acid reflux it's because the lower oesophagal sphincter had opened up a bit, allowing the acid to creep up. Hence 'heartburn' which you say you don't get. But...there's an upper oesophagal sphincter too, close to your larynx. If the acid gets up there we often don't feel it till we need to cough. It's known as 'silent reflux' and people often get it at night or if they lie down too soon after eating. Usually it doesn't feel acidic. Ac8d anywhere can cause inflammation and you don't want that whilst healing.

It sounds like your EP wanted to make sure you aren't getting thr silent reflux because he noticed you coughed after coming round. I coughed a bit top after mine - set my groin off and it all got a bit battle of the Somme for a few minutes - and that's why he's prescribed the PPI. But, as I've said elsewhere in the thread, you could ask to take Gaviscon Advanced after meals for a bit instead. Here endeth the lecture


Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Singwell

HiNever taken anything for acid relief or silence reflux. It's just a precaution after an RF ablation I think. X

Singwell profile image
Singwell in reply to Lilypocket


Well done, Lilypocket. So glad it went well! Your Zombies crack me up! Enjoy the rest.


Happy days, Lilypocket!

I'll have to change my pseudo to yours 😅

Hi Lily I’m so happy for you- having that behind you… I’m still waiting for ablation .. and sounds so much like my issues… How are you feeling now?

I’m surprised he would stop the medication suddenly too..

I’m hoping to keep taking mine after.. at least as long as for the flight home.…

I think mine is pulmonary veins and I suspected a vagal trigger so maybe dead floating cells.. I could still have a glass of wine as well.. but not red.

Please keep us posted.. again happy it was successful and that you have that behind you..,scary re: choking/gasping .. I had that happen when I came out and f anesthesia a long time ago.. felt like I was smothering., not a good feeling…!

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Chrissy7

Got a date for yours yet Chrissy? X

Chrissy7 profile image
Chrissy7 in reply to Lilypocket

Hi Lily how are you feeling today?I’m so proud of you .. :)

No . Here it will take at least a year so I’m waiting to hear from Toronto or Halifax.. got my foot in the back door both places through some references…fingers crossed…both the Boston and Toronto specialists feel that I have a great chance for a positive outcome.

The cardiologist who specializes in arrhythmias and does the equivalent of the “wolf mini maze” in Toronto that I had a zoom appointment with said “don’t let the 80 percent for good chance of outcome “- get you down-with all factors it’s not much higher than that for many operations…

As for the long wait in my province.. Too many people here are very sick with heart failure etc- and our health care system is extremely messed up..,

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Chrissy7

Wishing you the best and hoping you get both feet in one or the other. Or come to France - I waited 3 months. My EP has patients coming from abroad to see him. Xx

Chrissy7 profile image
Chrissy7 in reply to Lilypocket

… but what is the cost?

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Chrissy7

Well the stay in à private clinic, the tests, the EP and the anesthésiste cost me under 2,000 euros as I am résident znd get help from the health service. No idea for you but the full whack for me would have been about 5,000 euros. But if your Afib isn't difficult stay where you are 😀Xx

Chrissy7 profile image
Chrissy7 in reply to Lilypocket

It’s still difficult., the thing is I’m sleeping my life away.. on these meds.. but not suffering as I was …. For the past 2 years…

I think someone on here said it was about 20,000 Cdn (someone in BC from Canada)

But getting to Europe from here this days is extremely tricky….

Well done on the ablation .You say you were only taken for 1 1/2 hours.I was gone from the ward from 8 till 1.They did a flutter one.Seems a big difference to me.They did say they stopped halfway to call my ep weather to pierce and do a fib but they didn't do it so i guess he said no.Best of luck .

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to ETHEL103

They took me down 8h15 and back in my room at 12h. The actual procedure took 1h.30. Are you having another ablation for the Afib? X

ETHEL103 profile image
ETHEL103 in reply to Lilypocket

So far a fib hasn't appeared so once I get the follow up which I expect will be a call as covid is raising its head again I will hopefully get some answers.I suspect fluttervand lots of pacs caused my irregular hr .My kardia kept saying a fib but apparently doesn't show flutter.

So glad it went well Lily. R&R now! Did your EP say anything about what caused these zombie cells? How long do you have to stay in hospital?

Hi,I came out today. I shall try and rest now as sleeping is difficult in hospital. Feel good for the moment. No bruise on my groin. It had a stitch and an elastic compress which was removed this morning. Wonderful!

A random Cardiologist who discharged me this morning said when I asked what the after care was just said " just go back to normal doing everything you normally do".

Thank goodness for this forum!! Xx

That seems a bit reckless. I have to admit that I went back to gardening the day after I came out of hospital after my colectomy but I was careful to only do gentle things that required no lifting or pulling. But I would find the advice here to do very little at all after ablation hard. I was cooking and washing up with the aid of the déamulateur soon after I got out of hospital after my hip replacements cos it was just too much trouble having instruct my husband in how to make stuff ! I am put off having an ablation if I can't do anything afterwards. There was no suggestion that you should go to a maison de repos for a week? Surprised the clinic at Neuilly wasn't very chic. I have only been there once - ages ago I think it was when I visited the Bagatelle . It seemed quite posh. The clinic where I go for my ops in Brive is a bit tatty but the nurses are good and both the surgeons I have had have been excellent with good aftercare.Do keep us posted on how your recovery is going.

Well the very nice EP was laid back too. There was absolutely no advice for after. He just said stop the meds. I had a bit of Afib today and it was a bit all over the place. I contacted his secretary who got the EP to call me. He was convinced he had told me about the blanking period and Afib being normal. But he hadn't. I asked if a bit of medication could be helpful while the heart sorts itself out. Thank goodness for this forum and the information that is shared 🙂

Good to hear you Lilly.Well done.

I am interested in what your EP says about the Flecainide

I am still on it 4 months after my ablation. Though plan to reduce n come off now.

Was on 10mg bisoprolol and 100mg Flecainide bd.

Now 2.5mg bisoprolol, hoping to reduce to 1.25 end of the week and reduce the Flecainide slowly too, though have also heard u can just come off it!

Hi Not sure what to say. Obviously it seems all EPs have different opinions. Bisoprolol I understand because reducing from 10 mg needs time.


Wow. Those zombie cells sound like something a super hero should sort out!!! Best wishes for a quick recovery. Lots of love. Jan xxx

Happy to hear things went well! Sounds like your ep was very thorough. Where did you have it done?

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to mjames1

I'm in France. I had it done in Neuilly-sur--Seine , Paris region. The clinic wasnt very chic but I wanted him. You could look him up but the patient feedback is in french. The only reproach I have is he has done his job and he feels confident in my case that I'm cured and said I should stop all medication except anti- coags now. That is what I wanted but maybe more gradually 🙂I prefer to be cautiously optimistic and sit out the 3 months before crying victory. In time it may come back but being meds free for a few years would be marvellous! I could PM his name if you like?

No Gi problems at all with pulse field ablation. Another PLUS for it versus RF or Cryo. Hope the FDA approves it SOON!

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Jmbrph

I don't have GI problems just have to take anti acid for a month but don't mind 🙂

Wow -- never heard of dead floating cells; will have to look up that one. Best wishes for a quick and complete recovery!

Lily, it sure sounds like you have a very competent and knowledgeable ep. Best wishes for a speedy recovery!!

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Poochmom

Thank you! X

I had my ablation five weeks ago ( cryo for fib and rf for flutter )I am to stay on all my meds until I see my consultant EP. I was told this is to retrain the heart into being in rythym and then come off.

I'm in NSR 100% so hope this continues after the blanking period.

I have to take Omeprazole too,even though I had no TOE or GA it sedation (🙄😲😲),like others have said it's a precaution against oesophagus irritation.


Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to wilsond

That's great news and great recovery! I'm so pleased for you. I had 2 hours of Afib today and this evening I had the pretty visual lights sparkling around the edge of my vision. Never had that before. But feeling good if a little tired! Your EP sounds great.

Take care xx

Hi there, interesting to hear about your 'Zombie' cells, I had a cryoablation in 2018 and luckily it cured 99% of my irregular heart beats. I do however get palpations when lying down at a certain angle sometimes... Makes me wonder if I have some Zombie cells knocking about 😲...... Thanks for the information and I wish you a speedy recovery 🙂.... Oh and by the way, my only medication now is 1.25mg of bisoprolol each morning and that appears to be the sweet spot for keeping everything in order with zero side effects... Take care.. Dave 👍

Hello Dave, thanks for your message. Great news for your good results long may the success last 🙂. Maybe your palpitations are just ectopics? X

Worst effects of af

Ectopics, Geoff?

You may also like...