Cardioversion Side Effects

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Has anyone been left with considerable fatigue and a sore chest post cardioversion?  I just can't seem to get my strength back.  My heart rate stays in the low 50s on Sotolol but this is day four after my procedure and my energy level is a 3 on a scale of 1 to 10.  I also feel like I can't get a deep breath at times.  Thoughts?


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12 Replies

  • Posted

    How long and how "violent" was the AF episode that needed the cardioversion? 

    For me this was the critical factor in how I felt regardless of how the episode was converted chemical or electrical cardioioversion. I would be left extremely tired for several days and have a sore chest. Being breathless over an extended period will make you tired through oxygen deprivation and the heart whanging all over the place certainly made my chest sore. Recovery time certainly lasted for days

    Maybe the Sotolol dose is too high if your heart rate is so low? Check with doc.

    Recommend  meditation /and mindfulness as a means of achieving relexation.

    Being stressed and anxious worried about another attack/resumption does not help.

    Plenty of sleep will help too as apparently you release a beneficial chemical to the heart when you do. Cardiac Research Fellow Hammersmith Hospital 


    • Posted

      I have paroxysmal afib.  My last attack was four years ago.  I can't prove it but I believe this episode was brought on because I had been placed on flomax by my urologist who said I shouldn't have any trouble.  Well, as it turns out, there have been over 700 reports of afib after other men started flomax.  I discontinued it immediately.  This morning I feel much better.  The attack was not as severe as in the past but I had wilder swings in my heart rate.  I appreciate your input and sorry you battle this condition too.

  • Posted

    Have been cardioverted 5 times in the last 32 months. For each one I took two days off work, but have to admit that it took the best part of a week to feel 'right'. 

    • Posted

      This was my first cardioversion.  I hope it's my last.  I am starting to take Vitamin D3 and Magnesium again along with fish oil capsules and watching my diet more.  I feel better this morning.

    • Posted

      Hi Greg, if you have the time, there is a really informative clip on the Medscape website that is about addressing AF risk factors. It's an interview between Dr John Mandrola's and a Leading Electrophysiologist by the name of Prash Sanders. If you do a Google search on " Legacy PI throws down the gauntlet to US physicians" it should come with a hit on the Medscape website.

      I think that there we, as patients, can have a pretty signifant impact on our AF status if we make the effort to do the research/reading to better understand our condition and make the necessary lifestyle adjustments.

      Good luck with it all👍


    • Posted

      Thank u Simon. I'll check it out. I am going to check out acupuncture as well as yoga. I don't want an ablation due to lack of efficacy and risks.

    • Posted

      Fair enough, ablation is more of last resort thing I think. Well worth trying everything also first. 

      I was ablated (by Prash Sanders- the guy in the Medscape clip that I recommend) in April last year and have had no issues since. The critical thing with ablations is to ensure that you have it done by someone who is at the top of their game and really knows their stuff. You definitely don't want just any old Electrophysiologist who qualified to perform the procedure.(I think if you watch the clip you'll know where I'm coming from.)

      Prash claims that 80% of his patients are still in ryphythm at the five year provided (and he stresses this word), PROVIDED that you address all of your addressable risk factors(you can't do anything about having a genetic predisposition to cardiac issues!)

      Risk factor management is the key.😉

    • Posted

      You are so right.  I did find that ablations after a six year history of AFib only carries about a 50% success rate.  There may be many Electrophysiologists who are board certified but that's it.  I'll definitely watch the clip.  My biggest issue is healthcare coverage.  For the next three years, including my recent visit to the ER to be zapped, the expense is out of my pocket due to pre-existing conditions.   So, the hospital ER that treated me gets to celebrate Christmas in July on me!  They'll have to take their bite out of me slowly though!

  • Posted

     Hello Greg, I have been reading about your cardio version. I just had one one week ago today and I’m having every symptom that you have had. How are you feeling today? Would love to hear if this is all normal? I’m hoping to hear that you are feeling back to normal!! Thanks for any information you might have!
  • Posted

    Hello, I had cardioversion one day ago. I spent several hours in ER without any help.. Then I spent all most 2 days  in the hospital before they finally ordered cardioversion for AF. It worked well. Today I feel so weak that i can walk only with help, I feel confused and my memory  is not good. I have history of AF for several years on and off, but usually it resolved it by self.. I think that AF was provoked by flu and then i had a party where i dance  too much. I am  a retired doctor but i think they treated me like piece of s....... Even now typing this comment i make a lot of mistakes... Very disappointed with all this situation !!!!
  • Posted

    I had cardioversion for the first (and hopefully last time) 2 days back and i feel lousy, i walked to the shop to pick up some things and was ready to pass out.

    it started after i cycled home from work and then just started racing and missing beats (180+) and after 7 hrs in the emergency ward and tons of beta blockers later to slow it down which didn't work they said its now in stroke territory and they need to do the shock to get it back into rhythm.

    its back to a normal beat but i don't feel great, my chest hurts cant think straight and now wondering if i have a time bomb in my chest at 42yrs old.

    • Posted

      Hi Russsel, I am slightly better but still have dizziness and  my balance is not  steady. I live in fear that if have another cadioversion i would not be able to live normal life. You are lucky that you have it is done in ER and did not wait for all most 2 days on the floor in the hospital and of course you are much younger that me.  If you need any advice re medication let me know. I deal with AF for many years and last 5 years was doing well. Be well. 

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