Unsteady after cardioversion.

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I had a cardioversion yesterday.

Got there 8am with five other patients having different procedures. Just a nurse on the ward and a Matron who did the pre-tests and questions as well as my cardioversion. Last time more nurses and various others including doctor and anaesthetist splitting the tasks between then. Must be NHS cut backs

Naturally she disagree with the side effects I told her that I have from my meds. Nurse tried to put aneedle for a cannula into a vein in my left arm and failed. Matron tried to put needle in my other arm and failed. They had to settle for the back of my hand. Evidently nurses use the arm as the veins are bigger than on the back of the hand:-)

Discharge note said: Cardioverted 360 J x 1 back to Sinus Brady with premature atrial ectopics. Discussed with Dr R. regarding heart rate and patient feeling light headed when taking Bisoprolol so it was stopped. Review in 6 weeks at A/F clinic.

Bisoprorol had been stopped right after my last cardioversion

After the cardioversion I felt quite alert but when getting off the bed after having a ham sandwich and a cup of tea my legs were like that of a drunk and I staggered around. Even standing I was swaying. Porter pushed me to the exit in a wheel chair and we got a taxi home. I had soup and bread. The drunkenness did not wear off so I thought that I would lie down at 4.45 for an hour before dinner. It was dark when I woke up. I look at the clock and see that it is 11.45 and remember what had happened.

I use the computer and read for a while before going back to bed at 2.30 not expecting to sleep.

I sleep until 8.45 and still feel unsteady on my legs. That did not happen last time. Dr Google tells me that the effect can last for 48 hours. By coincidence I also have a bit of an earache to confuse the balance issue.

This morning my BP was 128/78 pulse 40.

So from the notes I seem to have ectopics. I had often suspected that previously but it never came up in past notes or diagnosis.

Have any of you had this unsteady effect for so long?

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    HR of 40 is very low. This is the "Brady" for bradycardia. This is why you're woozie and unsteady, especially if you're on meds too.
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  • Posted

    Background, I developed AF after aortic valve replacement in May 2012. I had a successful cardioversion in September 2012 and thought was it. In November last year I had a colonoscopy and during it my BP went down to 40/27 and heart rate to 30 bpm. They put it down to dehydration, the sedative or more likely the probe stimulated my vagus nerve and I went back into AF.

    I've no idea what my heart rate was prior to hypertension starting in 2000. I was put on slow release verapamil and losartan after side effects from initial meds. I bought a BP monitor after starting verapamil and my hear beat was in the 40's and stayed that way apart from when prescribed an alpha blocker for my prostate that made it shoot up into the 150's. Stopping that it reverted to the 40's. My GP has not been concerned about it and boasts that his is in that region but he is a marathon runner.

    Three or four other times my heart rate has shot for a few days but stayed in sinus rhythm .

    I have had many 24 hour monitors where all they regard as important is the average BP that usually comes out about 147/74. But during the day I can go from morning high of 210/110 down to 92/50. I always give my GP or cardiologist a copy of my most recent months readings... not that they give them more than a cursory glance.

    Last night my reading at bedtime was 140/72 37. This morning 182/86 43.

    When I Googled unsteady after cardioversion I came up with a link to a paper by one of the cardiologists I see. I'll put the link in a separate posting as they tend to hold back on posted links on this site.

    Cardiologist try to throw more and more meds at me that just put me in a daze and give massive side effects from swollen throat to rashes.

    I'll see my GP tomorrow and again try to get a referral to a hypertension clinic. There seem not to be many of them and it will mean a trip to Brighton.

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  • Posted

    Keep a diary of your symptoms and how they make you feel, so that you can show this to any Dr's that you see, I haven't had a Cardioversion, so can't comment on this, you can always try the British Heart Foundation as thy have nurses and medically trained staff that you can talk to and may have suggestions, hope you are feeling better son and get the right treatment.
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    • Posted

      Six weeks post cardioversion I am in sinus rhythm.

      I asked about the comments on my discharge letter of Sinus Bradycardia and ectopic beats.

      The cardiologist said that after cardioversion patients are normally in sinus bradycardia with ectopic beats until the rhythm settles back to normal. The ectopic beats I have often noticed when taking my BP over the years.

      My heart rate is as always mainly in the 40's

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  • Posted

    I always do. I stopped handing them to them as they hardly glance at them.

    Now I stand and recite my comments before I sit and still have their attention.

    Now that I am back in rhythm and off the beta blocker I feel 99% better.

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