How long can mum expect to wait? And tips for living with AF while waiting

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Hi

I've looked on these boards and can see you are all very knowledgable and helpful.  I'm hoping someone can advise me about my mum.

She is 68 and not in the best of health.  She has had 2 strokes, which we have since found out were due to undiagnosed AF.  She also has Type II Diabetes, high BP etc.

She has had one failed cardioversion and is now on amiodorone, apixaban plus all the usual, while waiting for her second cardioversion.  The first was performed in February, but she went back into AF within a month.  How long do people normally wait for cardioversions in the UK?

In the last 3 weeks she has gone downhill rapidly and now cannot walk more than a few steps without becoming breathless and having to have a rest.  She went to A&E this week and they discharged her, saying they would write to the cardiologist to hurry things along.

I am writing here because I'm worried about her mental health.  She doesn't want to live like this any more.  She can't leave the house and is struggling with everyday tasks like preparing a meal.  The GP isn't being much help.  We just want to know how long this is likely to go on and what we can do in the meantime.  Mum has got it into her head that she wants a pace maker fitted, which may or may not be suitable, but she hasn't actually spoken to a cardiologist in 2 years as she's just been in endless waiting lists for cardioversions.

Is there light at the end of the tunnel?  How can we find out where in the system she is? And is all this waiting around dangerous?

Many thanks for any help of advice you can offer

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5 Replies

  • Posted

    Can your mum and/or you afford to book a private appointment with a cardiologist?  That would certainly speed things up.  You would not be committing yourself to paying for future treatment, that can be offered on the NHS, but you and your mum would get some peace of mind quickly.  Ask your GP for a recommendation, he will need to provide the specialist with a summary of your mum's condition.

     

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    • Posted

      I tried to get my last cardioversion done privately and found great difficulty and gave up. One hospital said that they did them but then the cardiologist said that they had never actually done one privately and he would prefer not to.

      All wanted me to see the cardiologist first and have the cardioversion at a later date with a follow up appointment. That would have involved me in three journeys. I asked at several hospitals between Kent and Devon. Two appointments plus the procedure would be about £2,000.

       

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    • Posted

      The usual GP aswer to such a request is that they have never been asked to do that before.
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  • Posted

    My GP was happy to refer me to a private consultant.  It may be that a cardioversion is not the answer.  What seems vital here is that Sophia's mum gets some peace of mind.  Worth a try?

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  • Posted

    Thank you all. Mum was referred for another cardioversion by A&E and was supposed to have an pre assessment today. However, she wasn't able to make it into the patient transport car due to breathlessness so couldn't make the appointment. I honestly don't know what to do. She was too exhausted for me to phone an ambulance this evening, so I suppose I will try to take her back to A&E tomorrow. She phoned the clinic to explain the problem and why she couldn't get there and they said they'd phone back, but they didn't

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