Truthful Advice Please Re Ablation - AF Association

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Truthful Advice Please Re Ablation

Afibflipper profile image
136 Replies

Hi Everyone, Hope you all feel pretty ok this weekend! I’ve not written any of my own posts recently, just answered to try to help others.

Now I’m back on the other side - eek 😱

Don’t know if anyone would recall I posted about my previous ablations (we’re talking 2007/2019 ish) and unfortunately my experiences were extreme pain to the point of shaking and I’m not wimpy by any means. Only this year did I find out the real reason fo the issues following MRI heart scan - they found there had been previous heart punctures that had filled with blood in the pericardium, they have now turned to scarring but at the time it was never revealed despite scans - I was told they were ‘burn blisters’ at the time!!

So I am asking you all - is it really that painful if it all goes right? I’m due my third ablation on Wednesday and after the previous experiences I’m not looking forward to it, they are giving me GA as I told them of past experiences and also the fact the so called sedation kept my eyes close most of the time but I woke many times during procedures to feel severe pain but not able to vocalise towards the end - I’ll leave it there!

So, just wondering how others going through the procedure - what is it like after? Is it still severe pain for many weeks, what’s the normal recovery like, etc etc What can you do, when, etc

Thank you so much as I know from the past you’re all brilliant advisors and and so supportive.

Happy weekend xx

136 Replies
Quest4NSR profile image
Quest4NSR

I just had a little pain after, felt like mild indigestion, went under GA, holding a glass up to you reaching out to free yourself from the beast!! 🍸 All the best on the 3rd

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Quest4NSR

Thank you for that it’s very reassuring. I got the indigestion pain with the cardioversions. Cheers 🥂 to you too - stay well x

Hylda2 profile image
Hylda2 in reply to Afibflipper

Sorry but I have to admit I’m with you on the indigestion pain during ablation. Looked around for help and although afterwards she told me I was asleep I felt every burn!!! Thank goodness only the AV node done. No pain afterwards although heart having the odd protest. Bruising in scar and canula site minimal.

Di

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Hylda2

sorry you had the similar experience too, both occasions I’d been told I’d not remember anything they’d keep me topped up - one occasion I heard him saying while I was on the table he said “I don’t believe this, it’s not working why is it not working….” In my slumber I was thinking my hearts not working ……. Next day on his round I said what wasn’t working, I heard you in theatre - he was surprised I’d heard/remembered - he said we gave you a drug that’s meant to speed your heart up but it wasn’t doing that - ok Hope that’s the last one for you and maybe this will be my last xx

Hylda2 profile image
Hylda2 in reply to Afibflipper

He knew I was awake because every time he burnt a pad on my side heated up. In the end I tried removing it so they came over and fitted a new one noting that I had a very red leg!

When they wheeled be back to ward. Girl was telling them how much sedation I’d had! Not convinced.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Hylda2

we all respond differently to meds don’t we - I got up to 17mg of bisoprolol earlier this year, went to 5mg after first CV and 10 for second and currently on 12.5 yet others unable to tolerate some very low level even. X

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Afibflipper

Do you feel well taking 12.5mg of Bisoprolol?

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to jeanjeannie50

hi, yes pretty much, I’m not tired with it not breathless - I only get those when I walk anywhere now which I can tell is the arrhythmia rather than the meds. At 15mg I was more tired but still functioned but at 17.5 I felt I’d been vacuum packed - absolutely no energy, pretty dizzy on rising from chair - literally the energy had been sucked out of me. Went back to 15 big difference. At 12.5 although I do have regular insomnia for days on end then I crash for 2-3 days I still don’t feel like it’s the meds (I may be wrong 🤷‍♀️)

When I commenced it probably about 8-10 years ago they did 1.5 up to 5 but eventually settled on 7.5mg. From about July last year I went from 10-12.5 and settled again so I do push the boundaries I 🤔 think x

JerrysGirl3 profile image
JerrysGirl3 in reply to Afibflipper

holy mackerel !! There is a certain Med (stroke brain not receiving info on name at the moment - ah ha. I remember the drug : Versed ) that is supposed to make you forget what goes on during surgery. It's like you feel it and are aware of it but you forget about it. Sounds like some of you are not forgetting it!! As I'm new to this site, for some afib when on CLL leukemia meds which I'm not on anymore, but also have a congenital PFO (hole in my heart ). What is an ablation supposed to do? Also. Here in US they have this little mechanism inserted in your chest by the heart that's supposed to stop afib. I turned down every procedure they wanted to do, from that little device to PFO closure because I was fine before Covid vaccines and now that I'm off CLL meds (hopefully for a long time ! Had to stop after getting Covid as I couldn't get better!) my immune system will kick back in and bring me back to a better health. I am horrified that you woke up and remembered it!!! That's like when I had massive abdominal surgery and needed a secondary small one and nurse was supposed to give me morphine (which does nothing for me) and they sliced me open and I was wide awake !! I grabbed the nurse by her collar and pulled her close to my face and said "look at me!! Does this look like a face that's not in pain!!!!!!" Almost gave her a heart attack lol !!! Not really funny and I'm sorry you all experienced this in this day and age.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to JerrysGirl3

😮 think you’re thinking of the drug someone put on here earlier - Rohypnol or similar - I definitely didn’t forget - awful for you!!

JerrysGirl3 profile image
JerrysGirl3 in reply to Afibflipper

OMG. Never heard of that one but I know Versed is similar!! Awful for all of us!!

Jalia profile image
Jalia

You've been most unfortunate and its no wonder you're looking for reassurance.

I can only give you my experience and that is a very positive one. I've had 4 ablations, 3 under sedation and one under GA. Any pain I felt was dealt with promptly by more painkillers/ sedation.

As far as recovery went I had no pain after the 3 sedation ones but some chest pain and discomfort in recovery after the GA. This was dealt with by simple analgesics.

I was fortunate in having the same EP perform all 4 of my ablations between 2009 and 2021.

I had no problem with recovery at home and certainly wasn't waited on hand and foot😬😄....chance would be a fine thing !! I was just sensible and had housework, shopping etc up to date and avoided obvious things like heavy lifting for a couple of weeks.

I wish you well. Do let us know how things go.

Regards

J

kkatz profile image
kkatz in reply to Jalia

Jalia re excercises.Dont know if this link will work.healthunlocked.com/afassoci...

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to kkatz

Thank you! I'll certainly try these in the next half hour after I've sorted out breakfast for granddaughter! I'll let you know if they work......

Dadtoalad23 profile image
Dadtoalad23 in reply to Jalia

did any of them work ?

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Dadtoalad23

😅.....Still waiting to try as grandson ( also 7) turned up! At 140 bpm or thereabouts since breakfast. The coast should be clear by 2pm!

Dadtoalad23 profile image
Dadtoalad23 in reply to Jalia

sorry I meant the ablations but seeing your further comments I’m assuming that they haven’t worked. Good luck I hope that you’re feeling better in a slower rate asap … good luck x

Paulbounce profile image
Paulbounce

Hi Afibflipper.

I can't really help you with this one. Just to say good luck though and I bet things will turn out better than you think.

Paul

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Paulbounce

Thank you Paulbounce, I used to have short fingers now they are so long from keep crossing and twisting round and round 😂 🤞 I hope so and I’ll update on return xx

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper

Thank you J, sounds promising! How long ago was your last one and have you faired since? Hopefully success full!

My EP is a new one, so far with the cardioversions he did this year he’s been great so fingers crossed 🤞

Yes I’ll give an update after and thanks for taking time out to reply-much appreciated xx

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Afibflipper

You wouldn't believe what has happened. Shortly after replying to you I settled down to sleep and went into fast AF up to 170 bpm. First episode of consequence since my ablation 16 months ago

. I'm mortified as I have my 7 year old granddaughter sleeping over and her parents are 4 hour drive away at a function. Unable to sleep, trying to relax and swallowed 2.5mg bisoprolol. Will take another 1.25mg soon.

Husband has Parkinsons so don't want to disturb him .....Here we go again. It's almost unheard of for me to cardiovert without the electrics but here's hoping anyhow 😱

kkatz profile image
kkatz in reply to Jalia

I presume you have tried the excercises on here.I know you have a long history & experience.Try not to stress.Hope all goes well.Kathy

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to kkatz

Thank you Kathy. I shall look fir the exercises now as heart all over the place. I couldn't remember them last night as was taken by surprise at speed of events and didn't want to disturb the household!

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to kkatz

Hi Kathy - which exercises are you referring to I’ve not seen them? Thanks too for your good vibes, I have been coming down to a calmer level with everyone’s good advice and positive outcomes x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Jalia

I’m sorry for you - your post says 8hours ago so I really hope it did settle or did you need to go to A/E. Hope it wasn’t my post set it off! I actually only have to think about something or person etc that have maybe been somewhat of an issue and that almost immediately gives the AF alert through try Apple Watch

Hope you’re ok today xx

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Afibflipper

No, I haven't reverted. I've been around 140 bpm since breakfast. Feeling quite unwell. Have 2 grandchildren here for a short while as they don't often meet so taking my mind off it. If still the same tomorrow I shall have to take a trip to A & E or sooner if rate escalates alot. I'm hoping it may revert ....

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Jalia

Here are the exercises that may get you out of AF. Just tips that have been given on the forum over the years. I know that you're experienced with AF attacks, so you probably know a lot of them already:

I am a therapist in private practice for over 20yrs.One of my therapies is yoga based. Having quite an accurate knowledge of anatomy, neurology and physiology also having PAF I have found this technique helps me immensely when my heart is fluttering like crazy. Make yourself comfortable either on a bed or lying on the floor, position a pillow under you head, Raise your left arm in an extension position as if you are doing the backward crawl. Stretch as much as you can and imagine that it is stretching your heart muscle...I bend my arm and position my hand under my head palm upwards.. Stay in that position for as long as you can or until the fluttering subsides...At the same time I think of something pleasant.It does not matter what you think about as long as it is a pleasant thought for you. This stops my heart jumping about almost instantly....I also place my right hand over my heart area...Don't panic and just keep calm thinking pleasant thoughts....I do hope this helps you. Kind Regards.C

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As someone else who finds yoga breathing and some positions helpful, I would love to try (xxxx) suggestion, but lying down flat tends to make things worse for me. My most helpful position, taught me by a lovely yoga teacher, is based on a yoga forward bend. I sit up with my legs outstretched in front of me and a pillow under my knees, and then bend forward from the hips not the waist, with my arms relaxed but outstretched towards my ankles, and breath deeply and slowly. It's not so good on a full stomach and is more comfortable with your knees slightly apart, and I guess you have to be a bit flexible to find it comfortable, but it has proved to be a great help.

I agree with (xxxx) that staying calm and focusing on something pleasant is a must, and I've even fallen asleep like this as most of my episodes occur at night. All the best Liz

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Finally, like AV nodal reentry, some people have recurrent rapid rhythms that are infrequent and easy to self-control by using various methods to increase neural slowing to the AV node (so-called, "vagal maneuvers"). Using these maneuvers, one can sometimes stop the arrhythmia. These maneuvers include:

Bearing down forcefully like you're having a bowel movement for 5-10 seconds, then slowly exhaling.in the neck while lying down for approximately 5 seconds

Placing very cold (soaked in ICE water) cloth on the face abruptly.

Coughing forcefully

Rubbing the carotid artery

______________________________________________________________________

There's a yoga breathing exercise that has worked for me before. Lie on your back, bend your knees up so they are above your hips and your lower legs are at 90 degrees. Take a breath in for a count of 4 then breathe out for a count of at least 8. As you breathe out, bring your knees into your chest so you curl into a ball. When you think you've got all the air out of your lungs, try and breathe out more! Breathe in again for 4 and release your legs out to the starting position. Repeat several times. It helps to reset the diaphragm and focus should be on a good long out-breath.

_____________________________________________________________________

So, after discovering that making myself sneeze stops Afib. I have discovered another novel way to stop an attack. It involves drinking a litre bottle of water while holding my nose. It's especially effective if I experience almost panic as I can't get a breath. I don't always finish the bottle but find that's not always necessary to gain the desired effect. Works especially well if I catch an attack early. Kenny

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to jeanjeannie50

Thank you Jean. I shall be going through these in the next few minutes before I fall asleep. I had no sleep whatsoever last night.

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Jalia

AF is such a hateful condition, I feel for you right now. Sleep is more important than anything. I'm just remembering that leg lifting thing, where someone else lifts and lowers your legs. There's a video of it on YouTube, must find and add that to the list. Let me know how you get on please. Good luck x

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to jeanjeannie50

No luck with the exercises I'm afraid. I'm hoping that a very early night tonight might work some magic!

I do leg lifting exercises each morning before I get out of bed but don't expect that's the same! I know the one you are referring to. Please do let me know if you track it down! I shall get OH involved tomorrow if necessary. I'm sure he'll think I've lost it!🤔😁

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to jeanjeannie50

Couldn't find the video! Still in AF Mon morning so phoned GP whose message was to dial 999! As if !!! So husband took me down.....quite alot of people there bit I was seen quickly and taken to resus to be monitored.

Long story short, I'm about to have my 2nd night in CCU 😬🙄 and will see my EP tomorrow....cardioversion?....and further plans. I didn't reckon on all this !!

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Jalia

Sorry to hear this. Could kick myself now as I did find the video. Will go away and find it again and post here, so that you'll have it, if there's a next time.

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to jeanjeannie50

Here it is

youtube.com/watch?v=8DIRiOA...

Will PM it to you too so that you always have it.

Jean

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Jalia

Oh no ! It just backs up the info that tells us ablatees ( is that even a word lol) that Afib is waiting round the corner . It could be in a few days, weeks, months or years. We just have to " enjoy the silence" while it lasts. How are you now? X

Auriculaire profile image
Auriculaire in reply to Lilypocket

Hi Lily- have things settled down for you since your ablation? Are you still on Amiodarone?

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Auriculaire

HiThanks for asking I came off all drugs a month ago ( except anti-coags). I had a holter for 4 days with RAS. So all in all I'm pleased but very prudent as the Afib info tells us it is only temporary but the benefits could last a few years for some. In january it'll be 6 months and I will do a little update.

I'll send you a pm to explain the procedure and my thoughts on it as you too are in France.

Take care x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Lilypocket

Thank you - I just said to someone else that’s the depressing thing when you keep getting treated and it then comes back! I unfortunately haven’t been off the meds since about 2004 and now the concoctions are a meal in themselves. I hope you stay ok indefinitely 🙏 xx

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Lilypocket

Not too bad at the moment thanks. Currently if I go out for a walk I get breathless quickly and also quite dizzy quickly which is very disappointing seeing as I’d built myself right up in the 6 weeks I had NSR following CV so like in snakes and ladders just another snake got me and I have to do it all again 😂

Since going on Flecainide tho it changed the AFib to AFlutter and the EP feels has a better chance of getting that than the AFib so fingers crossed x

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Afibflipper

Fingers and toes 🤞🦶 x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Lilypocket

Thank you - hope you don’t get cramp but I appreciate the efforts. X

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Afibflipper

😄

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Lilypocket

Not too good but still hoping I may revert, unusual though that will be ! It was good while it lasted.

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Jalia

I suppose you are off all meds after 17 months of peace? Has the rate come down at least?I really hope it resolves for you 🤞🤞

Xx

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Lilypocket

No, I hadn't stopped my anti arrhythmia drugs! I was about to collect a lower dose so I could titrate down and come off them ?! Rate down from the initial rush of 170s to 140 s

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Jalia

Apart from Bisoprolol what else do you take - Flec?

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Lilypocket

I take Disopyramide. Flec doesn't work fir me. I use Bisoprolol as a pill in the pocket ie as and when.

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to Lilypocket

See my reply to Jean above ! Still battling it out!

JerrysGirl3 profile image
JerrysGirl3 in reply to Jalia

please be careful with bisoprolol. Was pulled off market and put back on (assuming changes were made ) and now I read somewhere, but of course can't find it now, not recommended for seniors. I used to be on it, stopped, and I think I had one pill and didn't feel good. Looked it up and never took another.

Jalia profile image
Jalia in reply to JerrysGirl3

I would agree with you which is why I will not take it regularly. I have only taken 5mg in about 15 hours and that's my lot. I feel like I'm wading through treacle. I think that 2.5mg will be my limit.

JerrysGirl3 profile image
JerrysGirl3 in reply to Jalia

sickening how they don't retest the meds after changes are made

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket in reply to Jalia

When I came off Bisoprolol my Cholesterol dropped. Wonder if there is a link 🤔

nettecologne profile image
nettecologne in reply to JerrysGirl3

Could you please look it up again? I cannot find anything that supports this?

JerrysGirl3 profile image
JerrysGirl3 in reply to nettecologne

I tried last night and couldn't find it but I know I saw it because I was taking it...

BobD profile image
BobDVolunteer

All my three AF and one A tachy ablations were under GA. Slight chest pain next day easily controlled with paracetamol and some minor ache in groin wound for a few days.

You'll be fine.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to BobD

Thanks as always BobD x

CDreamer profile image
CDreamer

During my first procedure I had sedation with very light anaesthesia, I felt nothing during the procedure but had back pain in the thoracic area for a few days after. Second ablation I did have about 30 sec of moderate pain which brought me out of the sedation and I must have moved so stopped and more drugs before continuing. Again a few days of thoracic back pain, easily controlled with Paracetamol. That’s it.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to CDreamer

That’s great, I’m hearing positive things so maybe this is 3rd time lucky x

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50

I had no pain after my 3 ablations, apart from a few minutes one night when I decided to take the electric blanket off of my bed.

Jean

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to jeanjeannie50

seemed a good idea at the time though 😊- so glad I’m hearing all this as my recovery after what happened was a couple of months - stay well x

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Afibflipper

I didn't always feel well after my first two ablations, was tired and heart kept playing up. I was fine immediately after my third but did have two episodes within a few months of having it, of fast heart rate, one of those needing a cardioversion.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to jeanjeannie50

I think that’s depressing isn’t it that we think surely this one will work or the next one and so on. I actually know now that caffiene does affect me. Usually I take my decaf tea when visiting friends, the other day we were talking and I’d left my bags on the side. It doesn’t do it immediately which is strange but about 3-4 hours later I kept thinking I’m getting a lot of palpitations tonight- I called to ask had they used their t bags - yes they had oops but yes I always know with caffiene, if food had a lot of salt in it or high sugar content. Xx

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Afibflipper

Unfortunately, we have to learn the hard way what can kick off our AF. For me it's artificial sweeteners. I used to carry my own decaf tea bags around too.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to jeanjeannie50

Are you still on decaf? It is awful isnt is as some who don’t suffer think it’s just like when they say they have butterflies with nerves - I wish AF (Fib & Flutter we’re just butterflies 🦋 without the complications and the meds etc but, I guess we’re lucky compared to butterflies for real & dragonflies and damsels - what is it they live for 24hours or the preying mantis where the female is mates then bites off the head of the male 😮 😂 maybe there is always someone worse off xx

jeanjeannie50 profile image
jeanjeannie50 in reply to Afibflipper

Yes still on decaf tea and coffee. X

fairyfeathers profile image
fairyfeathers

I had Ablation under local anaesthetic for the groin, and conscious sedation during the procedure. All ok. I was aware vaguely during the Ablation but was comfortable and was topped up with more sedation if I needed it. Recovery uneventful, minor pain in groin and heart area a little sore. All taken care of with paracetamol. Had lots of rest and took it easy. I had a couple of telephone chats with arrhythmia nurses for reassurance and a visit to Cardiology for a follow up ECG . I’m being fitted with a Holter on Monday to see how my heart is behaving. Unfortunately i do suffer with Etopics which are annoying. I wish you well.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to fairyfeathers

Thanks its all positive so far from everyone - hope they sort the ectopics for you xx

fairyfeathers profile image
fairyfeathers in reply to Afibflipper

I’m trying to ignore the etopics as don’t think much can be done about them. I’m pleased you are getting reassurance re your next Ablation. X

wilsond profile image
wilsond

I will follow with interest,as had extreme,unexpected,pain when doing CTI line after doing PVI.Never again unless GA

Im still getting flashbacks.

No sedation given,says so on my report.

I queried with my GP. He said,and I quote

" well I trained a little in cardiology and saw quite a few ablations. If patients seem tolerant,its better for success.You come across as in control and competent,so I guess they went with that"

So if I had whittered and swooned on entry to the cath lab( unlikely due to my upbringing by mum,took no nonsense,and hard boiled old bat granmas and aunties, totally loving but formidable)perhaps might have had an easier ride...😁😁

Best of wishes xxc

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to wilsond

Thank you for your reply & experience - I recall during the first theyd gone through the groin & at same time through the neck. On the latter entry it felt Simone had overbalanced on me and I recall my arm come up as though to push them off and I said “hey, Watch what you’re doing” (how clear it was to them with the sedation not sure but ever since that collar bone has a painful spot on it. Here’s hoping my new EP can do this and sort it- forever. Take care stay well xx

honey1958 profile image
honey1958

Hello AfibflipperPlease do not worry. Under general anaesthetic you will be completely asleep and unaware of anything.

My last ablation was GA and by far the easiest. Have had 3 and minimal pain after each. Groin bruised and wrist from the cannula but certainly nothing which could be called severe and I'm the world's biggest wimp.

Did end up at A&E after last one as had new chest pain for a few hours but it went and all was fine afterwards x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to honey1958

Thanks Honey1958 it’s reassuring, My new EPsaid after my last experiences that happened GA was the way to go - he said “last thing I want doing this is you jumping round on the table” - he is actually very nice about it . Let’s hope you too are completely sorted xx

stoneyrosed profile image
stoneyrosed

I have had two ablations the first one was cryoablation with sedative, the most uncomfortable part was the pressure put on the vain to stop the bleeding so they can feed the tubes through the vain, uncomfortable but not painful. I was asleep most of the time but woke up occasionally, not the most pleasant of experiences but I did have a second ablation which was done by radio frequency, they call this a top up procedure to finish off from the first procedure in case they missed anything the first time. Again I had sedation but this time I suffered no pain or discomfort and it was over fairly quickly approx 60 mins. Seen as though your having GA I am sure this time knowing all the facts regarding your heart, that all will run smoothly. The next day I had visual aura that lasted 15 mins and although can be a little scary it is quite common and nothing to worry about. My recovery took about 6 weeks for the first ablation and around two for the second one. You will know your own body and what you will be able to do and not do. But for the first few weeks I would just rest and do practically nothing, treat it like a holiday. All the best !

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to stoneyrosed

Good advice thank you. The last ones as I say were really bad and so this time all I could think was how much pain was I going to be in when I came round.

I’d not only had the two bad experience ablations but also a loop recorder on another occasion with the last Dr and I ended up with a very large clot (palm sized) under left collar bone. Think those 3 ops gave me the fears manifesting now.

Everyone has been great on here as always xx

falah12345 profile image
falah12345

Sorry to hear about your previous negative experiences with ablation

Did you get them done with same EP? who is doing the third one? did you get second opinion ?From my own experience I say it’s really important that your EP must be an excellent doctor !

all the best and hopefully things will be much better this time 🙏🏻

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to falah12345

In 2007, 2010 both ablations were done by same EP (who also fitted the loop recorder that gave me a palm sized clot). Strangely he was classed in the field as highly trained, respected etc and because I was told the procedure causes burns and that I obviously had burn blisters in heart that would take time to heal I believed it. Never knew of any forums or who else to get advice from. Just before I got I’ll again and needed to get an EP I’d found information that it was perhaps maybe negligence but as the Dr has since passed away I doubt it’s now worth chasing and getting stressed over now,

So when it came to choosing a new EP his time I did as much as I could to research their career but where I live they’re down to just 2 in the area right now due to death or moving on but im hoping with everyone’s good stories that this won’t will be the case for me this time 😊x

Sfhmgusa profile image
Sfhmgusa

it is two years and 2 days since my second ablation which I had under GA I put the pain and discomfort in the low to very low arena under GA . The first one I had under sedation was dentist level of discomfort ( medium) but for 5 hours.

The worst thing for me with the first was the burns/ reddening of the skin from the cardioinversion at the end . That was tender then maddeningly itchy for 2-3 days. And the groin “ wound” whilst practically painless was rather alarmingly like I had recieved an aubergine ( or two) transplant ! 😀

I consider myself a nervous patient and not a great grin and bear it with pain. So please don’t worry I’m sure you will find it not a great ordeal

Steve

Linkj profile image
Linkj

it is a delight to be on the other side replying to you. I had my second ablation under GA last Tuesday, 5 days ago and woke up today feeling fantastic. Worst pain I felt was the line in my hand and me foolishly taking the dressing off too quickly on my elbow line. I was under the care of Professor Gill at St Thomas’ Hospital London and felt safe and cared for. My surgery notes said “tiny” pericardial effusion but I have had no chest pain. I went into bonkers AF after 24 hours that lasted intermittently for 2 days and now rock steady, below my usual 100+ heart rate. I totally understand your fear and wish you the very best.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Linkj

Thank you Linkj, that’s the word I couldn’t remember - pericardial effusion - I was told I had a large one and a smaller one so finding out 12-15 years later what had actually happened I guess explains the pains,

I’m so pleased your back on the road to some normality and long may it continue. X

Buffafly profile image
Buffafly

I can’t add anything, my experience with GA was pretty much the same as the other positive posts even though I had a slight pericardial effusion. I did too much afterwards and paid with a chest infection as I don’t think the GA did my asthma much good. Best wishes ❤️‍🩹

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Buffafly

that is my other concern - asthma - following both cardioversions this year the first lasted 4 days as chest infection, second lasted 6.5 weeks and I felt marvellous until another chest infection so hence this is why I’m back here. Hope you stay well and thanks for your reply x

Buffafly profile image
Buffafly in reply to Afibflipper

You shouldn’t get chest infections if your asthma is well controlled. I used to have regular infections until my asthma meds were properly sorted out. I didn’t even get an infection when I got Covid. Perhaps you should think about a review of your treatment because lung and heart problems affect each other. My father had asthma, COPD and AF and died of pulmonary related heart failure - that was in the 1990s and his treatment was bad so don’t get depressed please!

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Buffafly

I am generally very well controlled but if I get a cold/ virus or I’m allergic to allsorts the first thing that goes is the chest or anything that irritates the chest - I actually got worse as a result of a particular inhaler, the dose kept being increased and increase and all the time I was getting worse - turned out I was sensitive to one it’s contents and when it was stopped so did the symptoms!

When we all got to hear about Covid I got a severe bout of asthma and chest infection, it lasted 5 weeks but we were only being asked if we’d had any contact with anyone from China

Fazerboy profile image
Fazerboy

i had an ablation for svt about 2 years ago. No issues at all.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Fazerboy

I’ll cross all fingers and toes - glad yours went well for you xx

Fazerboy profile image
Fazerboy in reply to Afibflipper

Good luck.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Fazerboy

Thank you - I’ll come back on and let everyone know how it goes - I can’t believe the amount of support from this forum and all the lovely people - fees like we know everyone (well I think so so thanks everyone) x

dedeottie profile image
dedeottie

4 ablations , 3 with sedation with varying degrees of discomfort actually during the procedure but absolutely no pain in heart area with any. I had 1 under GA which was a much less worrying experience but I did take longer with recovery compared to with sedation.

I suffered an unusual complication during one and it had to be aborted so I know how nervous you are feeling. I almost didn’t have the final one as the EP was worried about a repeat performance but had a change of EP and had my last RF ablation in August. So far this looking like the most positive result of the lot so it was really worth doing.

It is good that your team have not given up on you.

Best wishes

Jane x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to dedeottie

Hi Jane do you put the longer recovery as in coming out fro the anaesthetic was longer or issues the actual ablation took to recover from. I hope that you are completely sorted now and that’s it for you (I know we all wish for that don’t we) Take care xx

dedeottie profile image
dedeottie in reply to Afibflipper

Hi. In the week following the GA I felt really lacking in energy, had a tension type headache on and off all week and had trouble sleeping. When I’ve had sedation I have felt pretty much back to normal by the following day. I felt that the GA was responsible for the symptoms of grogginess and headache. Recovery from the actual ablation was the same for both GA and sedation. I took life very easy for around 2 weeks and didn’t do any hill walking for about 2 months ( just incase!).

I was given a GA so that the EP could keep a camera down my throat to see round the back of the heart as I had previously had a complication. I was very grateful for this and was happy to put up with the inconvenience of GA after effects.

Hope this helps to clarify

Jane x

Brenda-j profile image
Brenda-j

I had an ablation over 5 years ago under GA and had no problem and no pain that I can remember. I took it easy afterwards for a couple of weeks

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Brenda-j

That’s brilliant Brenda and no symptoms since I presume x

Brenda-j profile image
Brenda-j in reply to Afibflipper

No problems other than eptopics for a while after but I don’t notice now. I eat healthily and play a lot of sort - tennis and golf. I am 74 and doing okay🤞

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Brenda-j

keep it up - well done - I can’t wait to feel ‘normal’ again as those few week where I felt brilliant after the CV felt amazing. I’d forgotten what that felt like x

Singwell profile image
Singwell

Those are horrible experiences and I'm sorry you went through that! I too felt pain in my first (sedated only) and apparently responded even when unconscious. That night my chest was very painful but it did pass. For my 2nd I had a GA - completely different experience! Didn't feel a thing during of course and the healing was much faster too. I had some nausea from the GA even a few days later, but overall it was absolutely fine.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Singwell

I do talk in my sleep too 😆 seriously feeling bit calmer now with everyone’s messages - hope this lasts till Weds xx

Singwell profile image
Singwell in reply to Afibflipper

Apparently I twitching a lot! Thanking my stars that after 40 mins I was out of it, and no trauma. But they couldn't do a decent job for that reason.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Singwell

that reminds me of the arrhythmia dance on you tube - have you seen it - perhaps

That’s what s I was imagining you’re twitching to be like - aww Are you in need of another attempt or what are they doing now? X

Singwell profile image
Singwell in reply to Afibflipper

😆 I had another ablation under GA in March this year. Feels like it's been successful...

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Singwell

That’s excellent I hope so! March is when I started with the rapid uncontrollable heart rate, I’m hoping this nest one is the one to beat it x

Lilypocket profile image
Lilypocket

My RF ablation was done under GA. Had stomach issues for a few weeks after and some arrythmia but no pain at all during recovery.I hope all goes well for you.

Take care x

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Lilypocket

thank you x

Speed profile image
Speed

2 ablations both under sedation. No discomfort after either. During the first, I drifted in and out of consciousness and at one point I could feel a burning pain in my heart which I just put up with until it became very uncomfortable. At this point I told the team and they gave more sedative and I drifted back off. Had I told them earlier, I’m sure they would have given sooner and I would not have been in any pain. Hope all goes well for you.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Speed

Thank you, glad you were ok x

Jajarunner profile image
Jajarunner

Had three no pain at all xx

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Jajarunner

thanks - hope I follow your road x

bassets profile image
bassets

I had one with some pain while they were ablating - I woke up from sedation, but nothing too awful, and a bit of dicomfort for a few days after. The worst pain was when my wound opened up and the nurse had to stop it with a lot of pressure.

Jetcat profile image
Jetcat

having it done under General is far better ( I think so anyway)! Iv had 3 ablations the first one was with sedation and It was horrible, I felt every thing, got told off for saying ohhhhhhh that’s hurting please stop. Nurse kept saying imagine your on a sunny beach!!!! I said yeah let’s go to the beach and grab an ablation while I’m there.😳 It may sound silly but I think I recovered better after having general too.?

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Jetcat

Well we’re still here to tell the tale thankfully - glad you’re doing ok x

Brizzy50000 profile image
Brizzy50000

I had RF ablation 4 years ago under sedation i can honestly say I never felt any pain during the procedure, yes it was uncomfortable at times and I could sometimes feel a tingling in my chest but no pain, I could hear the EP talking to his assistant it went "right 10, 14, at 2.5(assuming that is the amps/voltage) then I could hear the click as they switched it on, then I would get the uncomfortable tingling in my chest.The biggest bugbear for me was lying flat for 4.5 hours of the procedure, in the end I fell asleep and then woke up on the ward.

All the best for your next procedure.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Brizzy50000

Thank you, I’m not soft re pain usually but they were real searing hot feelings that kept feeling - well the majority on here had better experience which is great x

Singwell profile image
Singwell in reply to Afibflipper

You probably have a high pain response/lower pain threshold. I do too. I was up to my limit on analgesic and still twitching. We're all different

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Singwell

you may be right, I do however crack easier when pain is inflicted on me but tolerate pain that’s happening due to conditions etc like I have arthritis and slipped discs etc I just grumble, take the meds but I just grumble to myself, take the meds but I just grumble, take the meds and carry in with that x

Barb1 profile image
Barb1

I think that you will be fine under GA. I had 5. Ask them to mix in the anti sickness drug as well.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Barb1

Good idea as I always come back with migraine and one anaesthetist did give stuff IV and it help so I’ll tell them thanks x

DawnTX profile image
DawnTX

Wow no wonder you are afraid. They tried to keep the GA light but that was ridiculous for you. Even with my cardioversion I was not aware of anything. When I woke up it was as if I had been sleeping in bed all night. Hopefully they will give you pain med and honestly by the next night I was only taking Aleve. My last one done was quite aggressive and as I said I was on Aleve the next night. I wonder if you have the same pain relief med sold in Canada and Bahamas or used to be. It had a touch of codeine nothing earth shaking but enough to help.

when things go right you are going to feel so much better. To sit up the next morning and breathe and just feel normal was the most amazing thing for me. This is how my cardioversion also made me feel when I woke up. First time in almost 6 months with a regular heartbeat of 80 some thing one or two lol and a smile on my face. No chest crushing pain. I wish you the best of luck and hopefully now that they know you’re a little tougher to knock out they will do the right thing by you. Hi

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to DawnTX

Tough cookie 😆 thank you so much - I already take regular pain relief for a multitude of things so hopefully I should be ok but fingers crossed I should be ok. Over the counter pain relief here is usually paracetamol, CoCodamol which I think is 8mg per tablet with 500mg paracetamol and they say 2x4hourly, ibuprofen I think is 200mg or 400mg is an anti-inflammatory which I am not allowed to take. I would think my prescribed meds should hopefully cope.

After the CV I had that feeling of normal, I’d forgotten what that was actually like to feel that way!

I’m glad you are doing well - I have a friend who lives in BC Canada, we’ve been friends 56years and when she comes over we talk for hours and hours just like the miles and the years we’re never there.

Thank so much for messaging I appreciate it xx

DawnTX profile image
DawnTX in reply to Afibflipper

Well today’s been a rough day I’m trying to find out if I did it to myself. Yesterday as in the past three weeks I have had 80 or below heart rate. Last night I actually mentioned to my cousin I had 70 for a heart rate but something didn’t feel right. Later on it was 95 and it’s been 95 to 98 all day today. I’m really upset which probably doesn’t help but I know with CV there are no guarantees. Even my doctor mentioned some do well some back in the office the next day

I have an appointment December 20 to find out about back surgery one of the reasons I’m really upset about the high HR. If it stays high they won’t do me in the pain no doubt increases my heart rate anyway. I have been drinking sport drink with sugar And also some Coca-Cola. I am water drinker I don’t know what got me on this kick for the past week but I’m hoping that’s what is messing me up. I was good today and will continue and drink a lot of water hopefully flush out whatever is setting me off. We can’t take anything for granted when we have a fib right? But we can hope.

I know what you mean about when you get together with somebody you bond with. I have a friend I have not seen for 40 years but we can be on the phone once a year and talk for hours lol I have other people in the same room I have nothing to say to lol

thank you for writing keep in touch I think you’re going to do great. I wish we had over the counter like you do and like I used to get in the Bahamas that was my home away from home for almost 40 years❤️

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to DawnTX

you can always PM me 😊

Maybe give up the up Coco-cola & maybe the sport drink.

If you feel you must have a coke type, pepsi max is zero sugar and no caffiene

“Sport drinks” don’t usually have caffeine but check labels.

“Energy drinks” do contain caffeine.

Watch salt intake, I try to stick usually to half the RDA which is approx 6g but do Chevy that out, I use ordinary salt as somewhere I heard Lo Salt is full of caking agents, salt can be hard to avoid if dining out (Chinese notoriously high for salt as use Soy Sauce whic is hig)

I find salt affects my heart rate but also causes water retention in my hands and occasionally feet. Your blood pressure goes up and the heart rate often too

So I’m decaf coffee , tea, water or water and lemon, beware of too much lemon multiple times a day may well affect tooth enamel so don’t brush teeth immediately as this is when the enamel has softened with the lemon acid - Also watch out for irritated oesophagus as I loved it but I got bad indigestion type pain from the acidity.

Finally try breathing excersises for relaxation - if you use apps Headspace is a good one but maybe YouTube x

DawnTX profile image
DawnTX in reply to Afibflipper

Thinking of you for tomorrow. I had a bad turn of events. My heart rate keeps spiking. I had an appointment with my primary yesterday if not for the fact I had an appointment with my cardiologist this morning he wanted to send me to the ER because of how I looked and my heart rate. Anyway no surprise that yes cardioversion stopped working. It is actually just flutter right now. The reason I say just flutter is because I had both before at the same time. December 7 I have an appointment with the EP my cardiologist works with. My cardiologist thinks I am going to need an ablation again. My flutter actually stopped after the VOM the end of April. The rest of it never did. Dr Mani told me today that a flutter is easier to fix with an ablation. I had never heard that before. He also increased my metro below and changed it to the XL and said he probably will have to increase it again. I like that he is cautious but very on top of everything. He told me the meds I am taking are the best top-of-the-line. I have been on them since I first got a fib two years ago. He did take me off Multaq. When we first met he was curious as to why I was even on it from the other doctor. Multaq only works if you are in rhythm. He said it makes no sense to take some thing that does nothing. They started me on it in the hospital following the cardioversion. Obviously I am very frustrated but I knew there are no promises with afib especially cardioversions. He said a lot of people don’t believe in them at all but he wanted to give it a try before doing anything more aggressive. He is the second one I have heard from that said my body seems to be resistant to many things. Yep that’s me I am stubborn lol even my heart behaves that way.

if he told me to be there tonight for the ablation I would be there I have no fear even though I have not met the surgeon yet. I found out today my doctor has quite the background and he is actually Director now and had been chief of medicine and chief of staff. He did his fellowship in more in New York at New York Methodist Hospital. I thought highly of Houston Methodist just ended up disappointed in my Dr because he played with my life. Anyway I’m in good hands as you can see I’m not concerned about having another because I know how good I will feel when it’s over. Usually by the next day I am feeling so much better.

I’m telling you this because you are facing things now. We are going to be OK you know

as far as staying away from caffeine etc. I started that immediately. I was drinking sport drink I meant to say that not energy but I don’t like zero free so there was a lot of sugar that I normally do not use. Also, I forgot the Coke has caffeine. I am such a water drinker. My cousin gave me some Coke for an upset stomach and I got a taste for it lol that’s why I drank it last week. We are our own worst enemies at times lol

I am not a salt user at all and I really don’t like additional salt on anything or in anything. I am a type two diabetic so normally have no sugar but I don’t like sugar substitutes I do not use those either. My sugar tends to stay below six except when I’ve been bad. People forget you have to watch your carbs also a bagel can be a killer.

Thank you for writing back please let me know how you’re doing as soon as you can.

I don’t know how you’re feeling daily I’ll be honest with you, since Saturday night even picking up my phone has been exhausting and I have not wanted to even put the TV on. My brain is going fast but my body feels like it weighs 1000 pounds. Just to lift my arms or walk down the hallway now again as an effort. I was so spoiled the past three weeks. Wait until you wake up and feel so much better I can’t wait for you to tell me how great it is

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to DawnTX

I totally empathise as that’s how I was in March this year and I do hope you feel much better very soon.

Caffiene - I know when someone gives me the wrong tea but unfortunately it’s usually a couple of hours later when when it kick in.

Thanks for sharing and I will update asap x

2learn profile image
2learn

I've had 3 ablations and 3 cardioversions. Now I don't know whether its me or the drugs but I have no memory of any of the procedures. They give me a shot in the arm and when I come round its over, no pain, maybe a bit sore in groin or slight scorching on back from cardioversion. When I raised this with medics I was told I was give sedation which allows me to relax but be awake so they can ask me questions, but it also wipes your memory so you have no recollection of the procedure. Its similar to the date rape drug rohypnol. I v'e had simliar drug for colonoscopy, 3 of those, can't remember anything about them.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to 2learn

Maybe I’ll ask for some of that it sounds good to me 😆 How have you been since the last procedure? Xx

Beta44 profile image
Beta44

1 ablation 7.5 years ago, undef GA so no pain during. None after as far as I can remember. Only one short episode of AF since.

BlueMonday67 profile image
BlueMonday67

Hi, I had an ablation under GA 5 weeks ago so felt nothing during the procedure which was c4 hours and can honestly say had no discomfort in my chest after, but a sore groin for about a week and a very so throat for a day after. Was really worried about it before hand but wouldn't worry about having another one. Your experience sounds horrible, but hopefully this one will be much better. Good luck!

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to BlueMonday67

Good to hear that, hope you have been great since xx

kkatz profile image
kkatz

I really am going to have to stop reading posts on ablation.I have around 3.5 months to go before my turn and starting to dread the thought of it.If I want GA it will be 9 months and EP says sooner done the better as it will be about 2 years persistent when done.I have to give it a try..Kathy

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to kkatz

Thing is kkatz look at all the ones that were ok, I have been inspired- I hope it’s it was maybe errors in the hands that we’re doing it as 3 out of 3 ops end like that with me but it’s all generally rare ratios - seems too coincidental to me but I’ll never find the answers! I’m just glad everyone reached out today and helped me feel a bit easier and I hope that when you have yours that it will be as easy as many of these say on here today. I’ll be rooting for you xx

Ossie7 profile image
Ossie7

Hello , my experience is similar to Jetcat and Singwell . First ablation was cryo under sedation and I hated every second of it . I felt every ‘ablation ‘ as searing pain like a heart attack in my neck , L arm , even my jaw . They had to stop one and repeat it so in total I felt the searing pain 5 times . My second one was radio frequency under GA …. so much better and a breeze compared to sedation one .

Sadly I am on waiting list for a third more aggressive one taking in the back of the heart area so this will be under GA . 3 cardioversions also with no issues . Best of luck , you will be fine under GA . Think of it as having a nice sleep and good rest afterwards !

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Ossie7

I really hope that next one does the trick for you - my EP did say sometimes they need to go to the back like you’re having - any idea of the wait time? Fingers crossed for you x

Ossie7 profile image
Ossie7 in reply to Afibflipper

no , but I’m guessing a year , like my 2nd one . Meanwhile the last cardioversion worked and I’m in lovely sinus rhythm with a betablocker and dronedarone to try to maintain NSR . Also need to lose weight before the next ablation as I’m currently too fat ! X

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Ossie7

I lost 2 stone since March but in the last month I’ve put a few pounds back on so I’m going to have to stick parcel tape over my mouth , seriously I need to get back into sensible head again. Here are some positive vibes 💤 💤 💤 for you x

RobertELee profile image
RobertELee

I had mine in 2015. No pain at all. The odd period of discomfort during the procedure but nothing to write home about. Certainly no pain during recovery. I think your experience is rare.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to RobertELee

I think so, I said to someone before that all the things they discuss ratios of what can happen but mine was 3 out of 3 disasters - now I do feel to coincidental x

wheezybronch profile image
wheezybronch

I had a little Ketamine, I have respiratory problems and could not tolerate a full anaesthetic. It worked perfectly and has made a massive difference to me. It was about eight years ago. I did, however, wake up when I heard someone shouting, it turned out to be me! I had pain, a lot of pain, a voice shouted out to stay very still and they "topped" up my Ketamine. I felt/heard nothing else. I went home after a couple of hours on the ward, absolutely no side effects. Good luck to you.

Suze43 profile image
Suze43

Only just catching up with this forum and can see you’ve already had loads of replies - what a lot of us have shared the ablation experience.

I had my first one on 31 August with GA and can honestly say the worst bit was getting the cannulas in the back of my hands! I was very glad to be totally unaware of everything after that as they needed to do a TOE during the procedure and I would never have coped with that.

When I came round I felt pressure, not pain, in my chest but it only lasted about 15 mins and my throat felt a bit rough after the TOE but I needed no pain medication at all either in the cardiac centre or at home. The puncture wound was fine and I was able to go home about 5 hours later.

I had no sickness from the GA and actually felt quite hyperactive for the first couple of days… before the tiredness kicked in. The wound healed quickly with very little bruising or lumpiness.

After 4 weeks I stopped taking bisoprolol and am feeling so much better for it.

Should I need another ablation at some point I would insist on GA.

Hope it all goes smoothly for you tomorrow, do let us know.

Afibflipper profile image
Afibflipper in reply to Suze43

That’s very reassuring thank you 😊 & long May your successes last

I have no idea what will happen with my drug regime, Following 2 ablations & 2 CV I ended up back in AFib. In April which was the 1st CV I was immediately put on Flecainide followed by the 2nd CV in June which revealed a change in arrhythmia from AFib to atypical AFlutter but it is apparently a steady organised one, thought to be as a result of old ablation scars and Flec’

I contacted Dr yesterday as to whether I should stop Flec in case it masked what was trying to find - if I was to come off Flec I would return to the chaotic AFib which would be harder to treat tomorrow. EP feels fairly confident of finding the Flutter and ablating 🤞 but not the AFib. Therefore I presume I may still need Flec to stave off returning to Fib post ablation ( It’s just a guess of mine 🤷‍♀️)xx

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