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I was diagnosed with Afib. three years ago randomly at the Doctors office. I've always noticed the irregular heart beat and my heart racing, however I nece thought it to be anything serious. I was medicated with Rhythmol and later schedule for a Cardia Ablation.
The Ablation was a scary experience. The usual 4 hour surgery lasted 8 hours due to some difficulties. I stayed over night and the next day was sent home. A week after the surgery I had to return to the ER with a DVT and a PseudoAneurysm. Mind you I was 34 at the time, so every Doctor who saw me were surprised about my age and heart issues. After a week in the hospital, a minor procedure to address the aneurysm, blood thinners, six weeks of getting blood drawn every other day, and a series of appointments with a team of Doctors, I was cleared.
AFib is basically gone. I've had to deal with PAC's and am under medication for it Flecanide. There is not really much I can do about it other than cut down on cafine and being aware. Other than that, my quality of life has been fine. Tiredness is a daily thing, but i try to get in 45 minutes of walking a day.
All this to say AFIB sucks!
grandscheme, September 25, 2019 12:07pm EST
That sounds like a bumpy road; however, it is good to learn that you are pretty free of Afib! That's great. You did mention cutting down on caffeine. I have cut out all alcohol, which is a major trigger for many people for episodes of Afib. I also drink a lot of water every day (everyone's tolerance varies), but I start out when I awake with 24 ounces of warm water and no coffee, which I used to love -- though I do not much like water! Dehydration Is a major contributor for many people, for afib. Keep that body hydrated and it can only help you.
Forty-five minutes of walking every day is a model for a healthy habit. Good for you. Afib sucks, but it sounds like you've managed to rid yourself of it for the most part. Keep on!
I would add, as many people have mentioned to me, a sleep study might be useful if you snore or have other sleep disturbances. Not one person in this world wants to wear a CPAP (well, maybe there's one somewhere), but using one can halve the rate of afib episodes, according to some newer medical literature.
retiredlcsw, September 25, 2019 2:24pm EST
I also had an ablation done - 2 1/2 years ago and have been a-fib free since. But ever since the '80's I have had what I called occasional "skipped beats", which I continue to have a few times a day even since the ablation. I used to get freaked out thinking that the a-fib was coming back, but I have since calmed down about that and just recognize it for what it is. I would suggest taking magnesium and potassium to see if this helps. I take magnesium glycinate and potassium gluconate and it helps a bit- have fewer of these episodes since taking it. You can check on-line or on this site to see what others recommend.
All the best to you as you continue to manage this condition- it is frustrating to say the least, but in the grand scheme of things, it could be a lot worse. Thank goodness your ablation worked!
grandscheme, September 25, 2019 5:09pm EST
I get those skipped beats occasionally too and, while every case is different from the next, mine are considered benign annoyances.
Sometimes they vanish if I drink eight ounces of warm water.
MellanieSAF, September 26, 2019 10:42am EST
PACs can sometimes be tamed by getting magnesium and potassium, as well as staying hydrated.
Many of us here on this forum use magnesium glycinate, whereas some have more success with magnesium taurate. And, occasionally, integrative medicine doctors will recommend magnesium malate to us. These three forms seem to work best for calming the heart and have fewer bowel issues. Magnesium citrate and oxide are typically easier to find but are much less effective.
grandscheme, September 26, 2019 4:23pm EST
Hi Mellanie, your comment is very helpful.
Do you happen to know if either magnesium glycinate or magnesium taurate affect INR readings? I can ask my coumadin clinic folks, but they may say to talk with the doctor and the doctor may say "I'm not sure." When it comes to OTCs, sometimes info is hard to acquire. I'd like to start using one or the other, because anything that helps is welcome.
MellanieSAF, September 27, 2019 7:45pm EST
No, those should not affect INR readings.