How long can I live after first encountered of afib?

Posted , 11 users are following.

I'm 36 year old male, 5"8' and 164 lbs. I had afib the first time on 8/26 this year. It feels so bad and puts me onto continuous anxiety

However, I've been seen by four different cardiologists. Did three treadmill tests, three cardio echo, three 24 hour holter monitor and a few blood tests. The doctors told me all results are 'normal'. But I see rare PAC and PVC reported in one of the holter report, and borderline mitral valve regurgitation, and trace TR. But doctors still say those are normal for my age. All and all, yet no doctor can explain why I had afib. One of the doctors put me on metoprolol 25 mg one table each day, but then I felt very tired and slow heart rate, then the dose reduced to 12.5 mg. After two weeks, I still feel very tired, I cut the pill and take 6.25 mg of it each day, so far today is the fourth day I'm taking 6.25.

I'm very anxious everyday now and feel not like myself anymore. I'm afraid of driving alone, lost interest in everything and feel like my life has ended. Any symptom of my heart can drive me extreme nervous now. I worry a lot everyday that my heart will stop all in a sudden, or I'll just die suddenly. Not to mention I've read tons of information and did lots of research on medication and anything related to my symptoms. 

Anyone can give some idea about how long can people live since the first afib? Or any suggestion? I'm totally depressed and feeling hopeless. Thanks for reading! Hugs!!

0 likes, 27 replies

27 Replies

  • Posted

    Sorry you feel this way. Been living with it for years. Earlier tried not to pay attention to it as usually symptomless but in time as known afib has increased incrementally worry more and more. Go on with daily life but cut out traveling far as fear being in strange or remote places. Not good. Meanwhile nothing major happened. Some people seem to live as before and are able to put it out of their mind..take their meds. do ablations. etc and some people are like me. Wish I could help more...
    • Posted

      Thanks for sharing your information. Me too, now I don't dare to drive alone on freeway, not even able to work my day job, and thinking of cancelling our Christmas vacation in Colorado, which I planned for a few months and the kids have been expecting. I'm so frustrated.

    • Posted

      There are bus drivers with AF and sportsmen.
    • Posted

      I know you're freaking out and have a right to, a fib is very scary! I'm 31 and had a bad one a few months ago, a more moderate one three weeks ago, and a small one today. The fear follows you but you have to move past it. You have to distract yourself when you think of it.

      A Fib is by no means a death sentence. People live with it for YEARS!

      Make healthy changes in your life and do all you can to keep your heart healthy.

      My A Fib seems to be related to gas so I'm trying to work on limiting trapped gas through diet, relaxation and other stuff. 

      Don't see it as the end of the world. You may get A Fib once and never get it again. 

  • Posted

    I think best to live! Even though i am as I am .I would say go on that vacation..
  • Posted


    I was diagnosed with incessant afib two years ago and have since had an ablation by elective surgery using private health insurance. Prior to the surgery I was on two doses of sotalol 120mg daily.

    The reality is that any beta blocker works on your receptors and slows down your heart, but also inhibits other areas which may leave you feeling tired. However, your post reads a lot as though you may be experiencing high levels of anxiety. You may benefit from engaging with a therapist to discuss your concerns, particularly given that afib has a higher prevalence among stressed people.

    Finally, look at environmental triggers. Things like alcohol, caffeine, high calorie meals, and tobacco can all trigger afib episodes. Also, to answer your question you will likely lead a full and happy life with afib so please don't be concerned. You could look at articles that describe meta anxiety so you understand how your worry is exacerbating symptamology.



  • Posted

    Good advice. A psychiatrist or family doctor can prescribe anxiety medicine. Therapy does help also. After reading the last post I wonder now if my tiredness is due to beta blockers. Have attributed it to worsening percentage of afib over a period of time..have an implanted loop recorder..Did the ablation help?
    • Posted

      Hi Betty,

      My experience with the ablation was that it was helpful. However, I experienced afib intermittently for two months following the procedure. i currently use sotalol PRN when I drink wine or consume high calorie foods. 

      Also, I would avoid using benzodiazepines to manage anxiety - super addictive and may lead to issues around tolerance. However, SSRIs have demonstrated efficacy among people with anxiety.

    • Posted

      When you experiencing afib, do you feel irregular heart beat? Because I'm taking metoprolol to regular my heart rate, I'm afraid even I'm having an afib my heart still beats regularly, leaving me not being aware of the symptoms.

    • Posted

      Yes, beta blockers aka metropolol will slow down your heart rate but will not smooth it out. Sometimes EPs use medication like flecinide to reduce irregularities, but my experience was not positive with that med. 
  • Posted

    AF is not pleasant but it doesn't kill you.

    Check with your pharmacist to see if it safe to split the pills. Some are enteric  coated so that they do not dissolve in your stomach.

    An enteric coating is a polymer barrier applied on oral medication that prevents its dissolution or disintegration in the gastric environment. This helps by either protecting drugs from the acidity of the stomach, the stomach from the detrimental effects of the drug, or to release the drug after the stomach. Some drugs are unstable at the acid gastric pH, and need to be protected from degradation

  • Posted

    Been told it can remodel the heart which makes one more prone to stroke and heart attack..
  • Posted

    When I first felt my AF, I tended to panic too. It can be frightening.

    You will get used to it in time.

    There is no reason for it to reduce your length of life or quality of life.

    I went on a holiday through Scandinavia and Europe with lots of walking etc and didn't give the old ticker a second thought.

    The beta blockers can be a problem and it might take a few different ones before you find one that you are happy with. I was on beta blockers but have changed to a different type of medication because the beta blockers were interfering with my asthma medication.

    Anxiety can make things worse so you do need to learn how to relax - easy to say but can take a lot of practice.

    All the usual advice applies - don't smoke, not too much caffeine, not too much alcohol, eat well, get plenty of exercise.

    • Posted

      Thanks for sharing your experience. 

      I used to drink lots of beer to help me fall asleep because of my very stressful job (Oracle consultant). Usually 3-4 cans of beer and sometimes it can be 5-7 cans, I'm talking about daily, for almost two years. And in the morning, I had to drink lots of black coffee to wake me up and to jump start my logic.

      I stopped all alcohol and caffeine intake after I experienced the first scary palpitation in early July, which was told as an anxiety attack.

      I drive 50 miles each way to work as well, which means sitting in the traffic for 3 hours a day.

      I know all these are stress and put together might be a strong trigger to cause my afib and anxiety. I'm trying to get a job close enough to my home now. 

    • Posted

      There is a herbal sleeping remedy that is made from hops if you ask your pharmacist. Cheaper than beer.

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