Does AF get worse?

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Hello,

I was diagnosed with AF in February and I am on Apixaban and Bisopropol.    I feel fine,   nothing wrong with me......or is there?    Is this it?    Reading some of the stories on here some people have so many symptoms of being unwell but I am okay.    I was reading that about 7 people out of 100 have this so do many of them just carry on as usual I wonder.   I am always shattered in the late evenings but not sure if that`s because I had pneumonia in February or because I am 73.   I was never tired like this before I was diagnosed so can`t see it`s my age catching up with me.   Apart from tiredness and breathlessness on going upstairs I feel just the same as I always did.   i Suppose my biggest question is does AF get worse?    What are the chances of something bad happening?   What will the future hold as regards AF?    Anyone had any experience like mine?

Kathleen

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  • Posted

    Kathleen good to hear your doing ok . I have read bisoprolol can make people tired. I was on it for a while without any really noticeable affects. I think you can live a pretty normal life if you feel ok yourself. stroke is the single biggest risk . usually treated with some form of thinner. I wouldn't worry about afib getting worse because it's not inevitable although possible.

    I had a few afib episodes March to June last year needing flecainide to get me back in sinus . changed meds and since then have been afib free albeit an occasional palpatations or short tachy run.

    sounds to me like you handle the afib well and hopefully you will be ok

    good luck

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  • Posted

    From everything I've learned about AF, it is that the sooner you have ablation surgery the better because as time goes by the AF gets worse.  A successful ablation would allow you to get off the meds - with the exception of the blood thinner.  That was my goal --and I was able to accomplish it.  You should have your cardiologist refer you to an EP who can tell you if you are a candidate for ablation.  As scary as that may sound -- the worst part about that surgery for me was the stress leading up to it -- and the best part -- the ability to get off the heart meds (with the exception of eliquis) and all their rotten side affects.  Good luck to you.

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    • Posted

      Hello Suzanne,

      I haven`t seen the cardiologist yet but I suppose I will take his advice when I do.    Glad to hear that the surgery worked for you.   AF seems to affect people in different ways.

      Kind regards,

      Kathleen

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  • Posted

    You're doing it right, Kathleen. Follow the doctor's instructions and just get on with life. I am 79 and have been in chronic AF for, oh, twenty plus years. I treat my fatigue with sensible exercise (it works) and keep my blood thin to make the stroke odds better for me. My version is that AF doesn't kill us. Maybe a stroke or maybe a serious bleed if we injure ourselves while anti coagulated. So give up your motorcycle and keep on truckin'. I had a cardiologist who, while explaining AF to me, said, "you can live to be 100 with AF". I took it as a guarantee.

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    • Posted

      Hello and good for you,   a positive attitude is always a good thing.   Good to hear you are doing so well.  I am going to get on with my life and try not to let AF take up too much of my thoughts or waste my time worrying.

      Kind regards,

      Kathleen

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  • Posted

    Hi Kathleen

    There are so many forms of AF.  I know people who did not know they had it, until their pulse was felt.  Others feel poorly,  and lacking in energy.  I have paroxysmal AF so I am fine most of the time but then my heart kicks into AF and boy do I know it.  It can last from a few hours to 12/15 hours.  Mostly at night, feel poorly for a few hours once back in NSR. Two ablations have not solved it.  Had for a good 8/9 years so just learned to live with it!  Might have a third ablation but previous ones made me very unwell for weeks after so not looking forward to a repeat!

     

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    • Posted

      Hello Shirley,

      Yes I have heard and read there are many forms of AF and I don`t know which one I have.   I have an appointment early June to have an ECG and hope to see the cardiologist too but I don`t know what will happen.   I am assuming someone will tell me in time which kind I have.     Maybe you had to have these ablations because you have had it for so many years and I am hoping I won`t need to do anything but ignore it [and hope it goes away]     You say your previous attempts to improve things didn`t work but third time lucky,  it may well happen next time and then you will say it was worth it I suppose.

      Thanks for replying,

      Kathleen

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    • Posted

      That just catches one moment in time. I eventually had a seven day one that catches everything and lets you press a button at any time you feel a situation. I never really felt much as most occurred during the night.
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  • Posted

    I am on Apixaban.  I had my episode in February also.  I am 70.  I am very tired  as well.  I believe it's a medication side effect.  My Cardiology testing all came out well.  I don't know what the future holds for us.   

    ?Did you have low potassium or an electrolyte imbalance  That is all they found wrong with me but then after the attack, my BP hit over 200 and they were not able to get it stabilized until they put me on several different medications.  

    Guess we just need to take one day at a time!  Good luck to you.

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  • Posted

    Hi Kathleen,

    ?In 2007 I was put on Blood Pressure medication and statins. In Jan 2010 I was diagnosed with paroxysmal AF, aged 65 following 2 years of palpitations which we could never get to the bottom of. In addition to my BP and Statins meds I was then put on Warfarin for life and 5 mg daily of Bisoprolol.. A little over a year after the AF hit I suspected that the onset was triggered by certain foods. I consulted a Nutritionist who carried out some basic tests, prescribed me some probiotics and recommended a gluten free, wheat free and oats free diet.

    ?While the diet took a while to work its way into my system I have now only had 1 AF event in a little over 3 years, and the trigger for that was sleeping on my left side one night, and apart from some chaotic electrical activity picked up on my handheld ECG device (not a Kardia), my heart rate hit 149 bpm. Whilst the electrical chaos stopped in about 4 to 5 hours the heart rate took another 21 hours to return to normal ( which for me with the Bisoprolol means around 62 to 67 bpm).

    ?I turn 74 this September. I am still active sometimes giving the Cornish South West Coastal path a work out, and I still work 30 hours (sometimes more) a week driving a shuttle bus in the tourist industry handling passengers baggage not much of it weighing less than 15 kgs. On average  the mix of work and being at home leads me to cover about 16 to 18  miles a week walking. And of course I still not just maintain my diet but have widened its scope to cover a whole range of other foods which upset my digestive system.

    ?My AF has not worsened for all this - in fact if it weren't for this activity and diet I think the AF would have worsened. No doubt.

    ?Yes, late evenings regardless of whether I've been working or not I still get the tiredness at times, but, not all the time. Often it is worse than others and my extremeties, hands and feet go icy cold and my heart rate drops to around 55 bpm and often it has dropped as low as 46 bpm. I don't panic just carry on with my own remedy, go to bed, hug a hot water bottle to my chest and have a mug of hot sweet coffee and sleep for several hours. Job done, I wake up, usually feeling shattered but everything back to normal. This event happens about 4 or 5 times a year and only ever when I am at home relaxing. Never when I am physically active.

    ?Now I have a personal theory about this tiredness - and its not scientifically or medically based whatsoever. My Echocardiogram originally showed my heart to be damaged at the onset of AF (the left Atria) so its a given that my heart is not pumping efficiently. Since AF hit my heart wants to naturally accelerate and beat faster and faster - the Bisoprolol (or indeed any other beta blocker) is deliberately slowing the heart down or keeping it in check. So, there is this tug of war going on - the heart wanting to gallop and the drugs forcing to it stay normal and this contest/conflict is causing the tiredness and sometimes the beta blocker just gets carried away and forces the heart rate to go too low. (I should say - I have no other cardiac issues).

    ?So, there ! that's my take on it .......... but of course our bodies are aging so that must contribute something to the tiredness too.

    ?John

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