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Lou15, September 7,  2019  7:13am EST

Breathless continuously

Even when I am not having an episode of Afib or aflutter, I am frequently breathless. Since being diagnosed nearly 3 months ago , it had been relentless ( my episodes) , is there a reason I feel so breathless most of the time, do others feel this way? It’s debilitating and I’m unable to exercise.

9 Replies
  • Spencer
    Spencer, September 7,  2019  9:55am EST

    Lou - A couple of possible causes: drugs or the AFib.  Metropol, Amirodrone and even Pradaxa.  So what drugs are you taking?  Typically antirythemics limit the heartrate to a lower rate that you might typically be at, say for exercise.  Next AFib, I found that I was also breathless a lot of the time especially when I was in an episode.  Hope this helps. 

  • Rogochef
    Rogochef, September 7,  2019  10:33am EST

    Don't overlook the notion that your breathless feeling might just be anxiety related to the entire AFIB situation.  I have the same issue and can recognize it when it happens.  Over the years when facing some new and anxiety producing situation I would experience breathlessness until the situation was resolved.  Now, when breathless, I have to determine if its AFIB related or just anxiety.  So far,  just anxiety.   Good luck .  

  • Spencer
    Spencer, September 7,  2019  10:58am EST

    Propropanonol is a beta-blocker and dizziness, and breathlessness are one of the side effects.  You will find for nearly all the cardiac medicines the side effects are the same.  I had some very bad side-affects and changed drugs often.  Eventually, it was only several ablations did I finally get back to NSR.

  • Myrna
    Myrna, September 7,  2019  3:47pm EST

    Also asthma, high blood pressure, heart problems, anemia etc can cause shortness of breath, just have your dr check that you don't have anything else causing it as well.

  • TR
    TR, September 8,  2019  4:54am EST


     Possibly, it might be worth buying an oximeter. I think they cost about 15-20 dollars at walgreens or walmart and monitor your bloood oxygen level. Just a thought,


  • Thumper2
    Thumper2, September 9,  2019  7:45am EST

    Lou, I have permanent AFib and have occasional shortness of breath (SOB).  I have a pacemaker set at 70 bpm.  If I've been sitting around for awhile and then climb some stairs, I'm panting by the time I reach the top.  It only lasts for a few minutes, and sounds worse than it is!  OTOH, If I've been moving around before climbing stairs, I got almost no SOB from the stairs.  I think my pacemaker is slow to "allow" my heart-rate to speed up.   But I also noticed that if I have been exercising regularly, the SOB is substantially reduced.  I used to get SOB when walking slowly across a level parking lot;  now I don't.    My biggest anxiety is having something happen to me that will not allow me to exercise regularly, in order to keep SOB, etc., at bay.  

    I also try to practice breathing properly for SOB -- breathe in through the nose, puff out through pursed lips (your computer may give you more info on this).  Hang in there!

    Thumper2 (Judy)

  • tolsen53
    tolsen53, September 9,  2019  10:01am EST

    Lou - Anxiety would be my guess, assuming your EP or cardiologist has ruled out any other causes. When I had this type issue, I found out I had a blocked artery, and had to have a stent put in. That, and then three months of cardiac rehab to rebuild strength, and I feel better, much less SOB.


    Good luck,

  • Larkspur
    Larkspur, September 10,  2019  2:54pm EST

    Thumper2 Why not get your pacemaker’s acceleration adjusted? I also have a pacemaker set at 70 and have had both the rate of acceleration and deceleration adjusted. It is much more comfortable now.

  • Thumper2
    Thumper2, September 11,  2019  8:41am EST

    Larkspur, re getting my pacemaker's acceleration adjusted, I asked my EP about it, but he said that because I have had an AV nodal ablation and my pacemaker is attached to my His Bundle to cause my ventricles to beat regularly, he finds that making rate responses more aggressive can sometimes cause patients in my situation to end up with other issues.  I plan to ask about this again, in my annual visit, which is coming up soon.  I am happy that at least, with regular exercise, my SOB is greatly reduced.  I am glad that your pacemaker is the type that can be adjusted.

    Thumper2 (Judy)

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