A strange phenomenon

Posted , 6 users are following.

Every now and then I suffer from a peculiar bout of fibrillation where a heat rises inside me coming up to my head, makes me dizzy, faint and nauseous. It builds up

slowly to every half minute or so. In the meantime, my heart is going crazy and the whole thing makes me feel really ill.

Two nights ago I had to go to bed at 9 pm because I felt so bad and all night my heart was in fibrillation and I had trouble sleeping.

Last night it happened again, so to combat the heat which seems to be the cause, I got a cold wet towel and wrapped it round my neck while I watched TV. I had to rewet it and cool it down a few times, but voila it did the trick!

I had a really good sleep and have woken refreshed.

Does anyone else have these awful sensations with fibrillation?

1 like, 33 replies

33 Replies

  • Posted

    I get the same symptoms when I am getting ready to faint.  Sometimes a wet cold towel and lying down helps.  


    • Posted

      That's what I find, lying down helps, but do you know what causes this to happen?

      and does it follow any particular pattern for you e.g. after eating or walking or sitting etc?

    • Posted

      Initially my fainting was caused while working out at the gym and I was diagnosed with afib.  I haven't been able to work out since because my heart rate goes too high.  However, now I find myself faint or fainting when I have been i afib or an irregular heartbeat or too high a heart beat for too long,  For me, it usually happens first thing in the monrning.

      I am scheduled for my second ablation on 12/28 (called a convergent ablation) and hopefully this will be more successful than my first done in March. 

      After taking many many different drugs for a year and none of them every working, I am now on amiordone, which seems to be working best  But I want to be off this ASAP as it can have some very serious side affects and I'm hoping if this second ablation is successful, I will no longer have to take it.

    • Posted

      I will be very interested to hear how your convergent ablation goes on. I be live the success rate is quite high with this procedure.

      Good luck and a very happy New year!

    • Posted

      I, too. Have heard that the convergent ablation is quite successful.  I will keep u all posted.  Thank you for your kind words and thoughts. 
    • Posted

      After all you have been thru I hope JD pray that the 2nd ablation will give you the relief you need. This is a terrible issue and been reading up on it very complicated. The vagus nerve is a mean complex nerve that controls many functions of the body. I have cervix issues and get some symptoms you describe. This is very worrisome..

      Very sorry ur goin in so close to the Holidays. It is worth it and such a storage phenominum indeed.

      Keep postng let let us know how the surgery goes.many prayers and heeling blessings sent your way. 🙏🏽

    • Posted

      Thanks for your kind words.  This is suck a wonderful site with wonderful people that I am so grateful for.  Knowing that I am not alone in this is comforting, although I am so sorry for anyone that is going thru it.

      Merry Christmas everyone and I hope I will be back soo with good news.

  • Posted

    Could be the wet towel stimulated the vagus nerve in your neck, which could have had the effect of causing the episode to terminate. Had a couple of docs when I was in a cardiology ward in a teaching hospital awaiting cardioversion come and ask permission to do some vagal nerve "exercises" on my neck. Said yes. They had fun manipulating my neck and nerve in various ways and watching the effect on the monitor. Unfortunately by that stage the manipulation did not work. But at least they had some practice! 

    If you put both your right index finger and the one next to it together and touch your neck and push gently just under your jaw line to the front, you should be able to feel the pulse and how the heart is beating. I always used this to determine the severity of the episode too

    • Posted

      I believe you are right about the vagus nerve. I've been reading about it and the effect I it has on different parts of the body. I had never heard of it before!

      I know that when I get these episodes I feel that I am burning up and then feel faint, so the cold wet towel was just what I craved.

      I look forward to hearing how Susanne gets on with her convergent ablation and if hers is successful I may ask for the same procedure.

    • Posted

      Vagus nerve possibly causing AFib interests me. Which hospital were you in, Okapis, when Vagus Nerve 'exercises' were done on your neck? Primary conditions I've had ever since an accident, 21 years ago, all point to Vagus Nerve involvement - AFib (constant fluttering, fast and irratic pulse), Asthma (especially blowing out), gut tight as a fist. In the accident, I was dropped on my front (large item in throat). Neck disc C5/C6 was prolapsed very seriously, Right jaw joint (TMJ) was dislocated, Right shoulder also dislocated.

      I would gladly act as guineapig for Vagus Nerve 'exercises' by skilled people. I'm keen to volunteer to be studied, to help the world of science.

      suzanne48640 - all best wishes for your procedure on 28 Dec.

    • Posted

      The Vagus nerve does not cause AF as far as I'm aware. Manipulation of the nerve can help terminate an episode. I dont know why. Google vagus nerve and AF and see what happens.

    • Posted

      And I was in Hammersmith Hospital in West London - think they were a couple of post docs...
    • Posted

      I'm wondering if violence of being dropped onto my front may have put my heart out of rhythm, hence 21 years of fluttering, ever since, along with constant dizziness which worsens upon any exertion, which itself makes me very breathless. Agree, Google can be very helpful at leading to reliable sources of info. That's what first alerted me to possible connection. I'd searched for "AFib+Asthma+bowel" after my GP 3 months ago diagnosed AFib, now confirmed by cardiologist.

      Thanks, Okapis, I'll see if Hammersmith Hospital want a guineapig for Vagus Nerve massage.

    • Posted

      mmm! It was some time ago now Liz and those post docs will have moved on. Your own cardiologist should know about this - it was my brother who told me (a doc) but it does not work all the time!
    • Posted

      Alas, after waiting 3 months between AFib diagnosis via GP's ECG, and confirmation at debut appt with cardiologist, 10 days ago, I did ask him if Vagus Nerve damage or interruption could cause or exacerbate AFib. He had no knowledge of any possible connection. He wants to see me again in 6 months - but his staff have made the appt 11 months hence! Meanwhile, their (debut) 24-hour heart-rate monitor failed, twice - 1st time they wiped it without downloading the data, 2nd time the battery ran out soon after fitting. A week after I asked for 3rd try, they have not responded. Cardiologist has no data yet, except when I am immobile. So, no help from NHS personnel around here, alas. Thank goodness for people like you using Patient.info and sharing experiences. :-)

      Now you've got me wondering what your doctor brother would suggest ;-) I'm thinking of asking my GP (when available, 3 weeks hence) for referral to a Neurologist. Above all, I want to know whether it would be safe for me to ignore increased dizziness + breathlessness upon exertion, and to exert even more - get fitter - be able to actually start achieving things. My life has been on-hold for 21 years since the injury.

    • Posted

      Alas my beloved younger brother died over 2 years ago! So youre stuck with me! 11 months to wait when the doctor said 6 months is not good enough! Suggest you ask your GP to write or complain to the local PALS both about the appointment date and the Holter monitor problems. Really not good enough. Sometimes the docs need a helping hand when things are bad. They know but are powerless to complain beyond a certain point so giving details does add the pressure to sort out matters. Two screw ups on a Holter Monitor does seem to suggest a degree of disorganisation. 

      Is your hospital a small one with a limited cardiology department? An 11 month wait would suggest they are short of staff?

      You sound complicated but if AF has appeared in the mix I would suggest that exercising whilst dizzy and breathless, stressing your heart is perhaps not a good idea. You could potentially damage your  heart. Discuss with your GP!  

    • Posted

      Thanks again, Okapis, and sympathies (especially at Xmas) for losing a beloved sibling 2 yrs ago.

      True, my case is complicated. Now facing-up to Cardiologist's letter-to-GP. I'm diagnosed as being a "long-term sufferer with Palpitations and Atrial Fibrillation. However I note you have only recently diagnosed this."

      Hmm, GP surgery reprimanded for 21 years neglect? Or just Cardiologist covering himself in case I blackout or die while walking?

      Wikipedia page on Palpitations has many mentions of Vagus Nerve. I'm now Googling "research+Vagus+Nerve". Imperial College, London seems not currently to need me. Their list reminds me of my top symptom for the 1st 6 months after the accident - untreated - what I told my then-GP seemed akin to Epilepsy. As a car passenger, reclined (due to lower-back Laminectomy of 1 of 2 adjacent prolapsed discs) the 'flashing' effect of sunlight from behind trees or buildings gave me searing headpain + intense light sensitivity. Wonder if that is further indication of Vagus Nerve injury on Day 1.

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