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New to the forum and to the diagnosis

Posted by CPaulAK 
New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 04, 2018 09:06AM
Dear Everyone,

First my gratitude to finding this forum, to all, and to Jackie who I feel so comforted by your words of encouragement.

Four weeks ago I sought treatment for a sinus infection and upon taking my pulse the doc identified my afib and I was medevaced from our remote location to a large hospital, diagnosed with A Flutter (which my mother had been treated for via ablation the year prior) and had the procedure performed on me. Everything was hunky Dory for about ten days until I developed bronchitis and was put on doxycycline which cleared up the bronchitis but gave me debilitating diarrhea which dehydrated me massively and suddenly I had the racing, irregular heartbeat which led me back to the ER and was told I was in AFIB. My doctor had cautioned me earlier this was a possibility in A Flutter patients. So I met with my cardielectrologist (or however they are referred to) and put on Cartia, Multaq, and of course Eliquis. Needless to say I was and am massively freaked out. I had no idea I had AFIB prior to sealing treatment for the sinus infection but thinking back I can identify the symptoms, the racing heart, fast heart beat which would suddenly lower to the 60’s, irregular beat, feeling of anxiety, but I always write it off the last several years as job stress, and because I am a decent athlete I thought what could be wrong with my heart?

So, after the AFIB event following the flutter and the new drug regimen my doc and I decided, in part due to my increased anxiety, to do a second ablation this time to address the AFIB. That will happen late in June. I have had two AFIB events since, both preceded by giant stress filled events at my job involving personnel decisions, politics, and 10 out of 10 on the anxiety scale (if one were to exist). I can not explain to you enough the anxiety these events caused and have zero doubt they kicked me into AFIB episodes which I captured in my Kardia, which I agree with others on this forum is both a blessing and a curse. Both times I followed my docs advice which was to chill, stay away from the er and don’t call him unless I felt crappy, like I was going to pass out or other severe symptoms, which I did not. He actually told me to take a Valium and relax and I both episodes they passed in seven to ten hours. The last episode I actually said screw it and had a couple beers which relaxed me and helped me recover I think. Also I’ve been using the magnesium supplement called Calm wich comes in a powdered form which I have no proof that it works but seems to keep me leveled out.

In conclusion thank you so much for being here, for the support you all offer. At times it’s confusing I.e. what to eat - for example I see about half of the posts say tuna fish is bad for AFIB and the other half say it’s great! So much more reading to be done. It I can offer one thing back to you, although unscientific to be sure, high stress anxiety events as I’ve experienced twice in the past week will trigger AFIB I have no doubt in my mind. When I woke up with my heart pounding and 100bpm for perhaps the most difficult meeting of my life the other day I knew AFIB was coming and had no surprise when it did. I felt fine other than the cheat flutters, got through the day, took my meds and carried on and soon it was over. But how depressing to go through and I feel for everyone here but am encouraged I’m not dealing with it alone.

Thanks and God bless all and help us with their AFIB.
Re: New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 04, 2018 11:44AM
Hello CPaulAK - Very sorry you found it necessary to find our forum... but the good news is - it's a great place for support and to begin looking at potential underlying factors that can contribute to Afib... and you've already mentioned several. I'll be responding in more detail to your comments soon... sorry, I've got some early-afternoon commitments ...but will try to continue yet today. I have some suggestions for your consideration. We are all here to try to help.

Best to you,
Jackie
Re: New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 04, 2018 01:12PM
Hello, CPaulAK....the initial diagnosis of A-fib causes anxiety in almost everyone. Often it is unexpected as in your case. The positive thing is that there are medicines and procedures that help to control it. Sometimes there can be a process of "trial and error" to find out what works best for you. A-fib can affect each individual in a different way and stress is a common trigger for many of us.
This is an excellent forum and you will learn a lot from reading the posts here.
Another good a-fib support group is MyAfibExperience.org which is sponsored by StopAfib.org and the American Heart Association.
It is comforting to know that you are not alone...and that many others are also dealing with this arrhythmia.
I hope you will find the posts in this group helpful and that your June ablation will be successful. Best wishes..
Re: New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 04, 2018 03:35PM
Quote
CPaulAK
Dear Everyone,

First my gratitude to finding this forum, to all, and to Jackie who I feel so comforted by your words of encouragement.

Four weeks ago I sought treatment for a sinus infection and upon taking my pulse the doc identified my afib and I was medevaced from our remote location to a large hospital, diagnosed with A Flutter (which my mother had been treated for via ablation the year prior) and had the procedure performed on me. Everything was hunky Dory for about ten days until I developed bronchitis and was put on doxycycline which cleared up the bronchitis but gave me debilitating diarrhea which dehydrated me massively and suddenly I had the racing, irregular heartbeat which led me back to the ER and was told I was in AFIB. My doctor had cautioned me earlier this was a possibility in A Flutter patients. So I met with my cardielectrologist (or however they are referred to) and put on Cartia, Multaq, and of course Eliquis. Needless to say I was and am massively freaked out. I had no idea I had AFIB prior to sealing treatment for the sinus infection but thinking back I can identify the symptoms, the racing heart, fast heart beat which would suddenly lower to the 60’s, irregular beat, feeling of anxiety, but I always write it off the last several years as job stress, and because I am a decent athlete I thought what could be wrong with my heart?

So, after the AFIB event following the flutter and the new drug regimen my doc and I decided, in part due to my increased anxiety, to do a second ablation this time to address the AFIB. That will happen late in June. I have had two AFIB events since, both preceded by giant stress filled events at my job involving personnel decisions, politics, and 10 out of 10 on the anxiety scale (if one were to exist). I can not explain to you enough the anxiety these events caused and have zero doubt they kicked me into AFIB episodes which I captured in my Kardia, which I agree with others on this forum is both a blessing and a curse. Both times I followed my docs advice which was to chill, stay away from the er and don’t call him unless I felt crappy, like I was going to pass out or other severe symptoms, which I did not. He actually told me to take a Valium and relax and I both episodes they passed in seven to ten hours. The last episode I actually said screw it and had a couple beers which relaxed me and helped me recover I think. Also I’ve been using the magnesium supplement called Calm wich comes in a powdered form which I have no proof that it works but seems to keep me leveled out.

In conclusion thank you so much for being here, for the support you all offer. At times it’s confusing I.e. what to eat - for example I see about half of the posts say tuna fish is bad for AFIB and the other half say it’s great! So much more reading to be done. It I can offer one thing back to you, although unscientific to be sure, high stress anxiety events as I’ve experienced twice in the past week will trigger AFIB I have no doubt in my mind. When I woke up with my heart pounding and 100bpm for perhaps the most difficult meeting of my life the other day I knew AFIB was coming and had no surprise when it did. I felt fine other than the cheat flutters, got through the day, took my meds and carried on and soon it was over. But how depressing to go through and I feel for everyone here but am encouraged I’m not dealing with it alone.

Thanks and God bless all and help us with their AFIB.

It I can offer one thing back to you, although unscientific to be sure, high stress anxiety events as I’ve experienced twice in the past week will trigger AFIB I have no doubt in my mind. <

Don't ever forget it either.
My first a fib epesode was back in 2001 when I was going through a divorce and child custody scenario. It was by far the most stressful time in my life bar none. It was the beginning of a long and shitty road of afib thats just gotten way worse. I dont have any relatives or anyone that has afib and I'm sure it was all started by that rediculous stress period I went through.
My advice to you is to find something else. Its not worth the toll its going to take on your heart.
Re: New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 04, 2018 05:26PM
CPaulAK - Sorry... for the delay... You bring up many points for clarification. It's very important to attempt to get control over the stress factor... and I realize that's an obvious comment and often very difficult to do, but it's really something that helps both mentally and overall, physically. There are diversional 'tactics' you can try and also as you've done and trying the the magnesium to help relax is good -- just don't take so much you have the bowel cleanse which is counterproductive for electrolytes. I'm going to work up some ideas for you on several areas you've mentioned. Stand by.
Jackie
Re: New to the forum and to the diagnosis
June 10, 2018 02:20AM
Just thanks everyone for your kind posts it helps me with my anxiety tremendously and while this condition sucks it has on the other hand made me take a complete look at my life from the physical, nutritional, stress/psychological, and just the humanity of so many of us folks suffering and I hope this makes me a better human being and I just appreciate your support so much and hope to help with my experience as well. God bless everyone.
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