Patient Comments: Atrial Fibrillation - Symptoms and Signs


What symptoms and signs did you experience with your atrial fibrillation? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: DH, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 23

There's been something wrong with my heart since I was 12 year old. At 21 I was diagnosed with mitral valve tachycardia, later told that wasn't true but they didn't have an answer to what it was. It would race, 204 bpm at rest, for days. If it went on for 3 days, I'd go to the emergency room and have them stop it. It happened about once a month. That wasn't atrial fibrillation. In my early 40s, it started beating fast, then slow, and there was no way to stop it. It got more and more frequent, 2 to 3 times a week lasting over a day each time. Feels like a rumbling in your chest, or a Superball in a box that's shaken when it's going real fast. Normally it's preceded by a pressure feeling at the base of my neck, like a panic attack. They've tried me on many different medications, if they work at all, it is short-lived. I am running out of allopathic options and the ablation is only 60 percent effective so doubt that will work. It averages 130 bpm over a 24 hour period. So far, heart is still healthy, but what to do about the screwy signal that's telling it to beat like that!

Comment from: Manon, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: June 15

My atrial fibrillation started with a feeling of indigestion, a fullness in my throat and feeling shaky all over. It passed quickly. I felt bad the next day and went to the doctor and I was diagnosed with a virus. A few days later I read the symptoms of heart attack in women, got nervous and went to the emergency room thinking I may have had a silent heart attack. I didn't, they did an EKG, but I had atrial fibrillation. I was admitted and they tried to convert with medication but because I tend to have low blood pressure, it didn't work. After a few days I was transferred to a larger hospital and they did an electrical cardioconversion. It took less than 30 minutes. I went home the next morning. So far I have not had it happen again. I take metoprolol and Eliquis.

Comment from: Stretch, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: May 07

With atrial fibrillation I had transient ischemic attack (TIA) with global amnesia. Fortunately my husband was with me, and could identify the behavior to my doctor.

Comment from: joby, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: January 02

I am a 25 year old male. I've had atrial fibrillation twice. Once 4 years ago after electrocuting myself doing some home wiring and once last month after a night out at the bar. Both times the symptoms were the same. A feeling of almost like your stomach churning only higher in your chest along with numbness and tingling of my extremities and ears. This past time it took 5 cardioversions for my heart to go back in rhythm, during two of which I was conscious. I do not wish this condition on anyone, it is pretty scary.

Comment from: Russell, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: June 28

With my atrial fibrillation, I experience a rapid heartbeat, mostly in the mornings, along with some cheat pain. I can feel something like indigestion during this time. All tests showed no artery problems. However, my doctor wants to start me on Coumadin. I am afraid of it, and I am not sure I will let him start it.

Comment from: Val, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: January 19

I had a catheter ablation last June and it has helped a lot with my atrial fibrillation. The only thing is that I now get very bad acid reflux and have to take Gaviscon before every meal and it is often painful. My endoscopy was clear.

Comment from: Frances, Female (Patient) Published: February 29

I am 76, tired, and weak with dizziness. I went to doctor who said I have ear infection. I don't have a cold or sinus condition. He gave me prescription and sent me on my way. To tell you the truth I think it might be atrial fibrillation.

Comment from: cayoude, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: October 17

My husband went in for a knee replacement back in July. Two days later I was notified that he went into atrial fibrillation. I do not know what caused this as he had all the physicals he needed before hand. Needless to say a two day hospital stay turned into a two week stay with four days in intensive care. He has had two hip replacements with no problem. He is 61 years old.

Comment from: Mommato4, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 08

A "fluttering" in my chest that I had for years became more and more frequent. Once in a while to most days, to everyday, to most of the day. Then I'd feel pain with the fluttering. Around the same time the frequency increased, I also had a feeling of something heavy on my chest or something tightening around my heart/chest. I tire extremely easily. Felt out of breath, even though I gulped air. 35 year old female, otherwise healthy, active, normal weight, blood pressure, and blood values (including cholesterol).


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Comment from: jo, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 22

I am a 47-year-old female. I experienced sudden onset atrial fibrillation last Tuesday. My beats were 190 and my blood pressure was high. I was on blood pressure medications for four years. My heart went back into rhythm on its own after several IV of cardizem in the emergency room. I had an echo test and lung scan to check for clots. It came back all clear. I was discharged after two days on pradaxa, 150 mg, twice a day, and toprol, 50 mg once a day, and I have to check my pulse. I feel better, but I am frightened of it returning. It was a very scary event for me.

Comment from: nlb0818, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 22

I am a 57-year-old female. My first bout was November of last year. I have atrial fibrillation and tachy brady. They tried to treat it with meds. It didn't work. I was in and out of atrial fibrillation constantly. I went for a cardiac ablation at the end of February. It also didn't work. I had a pacemaker put in three days after the ablation surgery. The good news is I don't have the brady symptoms (pauses in my heartbeat) anymore but the tachy side is no better. They said it takes up to three months to see results sometimes. I can only hope.

Comment from: Sandy, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: May 23

I had atrial fibrillation a couple of years ago. It was related to stress. I was working and looking after both my parents who were ill at the time. Also looking after my family. It was during a regular visit with my family doctor. I went directly to the hospital. I now have been taking Metoprolol, Coumadin, and Ramipril. Other than feeling tired sometimes I am doing fairly well. I am not seeing my heart specialist as my doctor has decided that I can see her instead. I feel that the doctors don't think that it is very important.

Comment from: debra706, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 27

I have had A-Fib 4 times in the last month. I usually have a pounding heart beat, can feel it flutter like a butterfly in your chest. Very short of breath and a lot of pressure in the chest. Pulse got up to 196 and A- Fib lasted 5 to 8 hours. The last 2 times was hospitalized 3 times from June 26 to July 5th. At times they had to get my blood pressure up in order to treat A-Fib.

Comment from: jflogan5, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: January 26

I am a 49 year old male and had my first Afib episode in Sep 09. I went to 5 plus different doctors before I got it under control and I hope we have it stopped for good now. I haven't had an episode since Christmas Day. A whole month pain free. No one tested my thyroid until I went to the hospital the Endocrinologist took me off diltiazem (it didn't lower my blood pressure or help at all.) My heart rate increased to 88+ dead rest and 100+ normal resting. Tremors were bad all the time. Chest pain very painful during Afib and mild without. Turns out I had Graves Disease real bad. Endocrinologist put me on 25mg Atenolol. It slowed my heart and stopped the Afib as well as got rid of the tremors. It worked great for me. I just started replacement thyroid hormone and am hoping it works well and no more Afib. Get your thyroid checked by an Endocrinologist to rule it out and be safe. It's just another blood test. There are four or five different hormone blood levels that can be checked. Good luck!

Comment from: Cheif12, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: January 25

I was diagnosed with WPW 15 years ago and had an ablation procedure carried out 5 years later. Since that time I have had an irregular heart beat usually at night during my sleep. My symptoms are; an unusually beating of my heart on the left side of my chest, pounding pulse rate, sweating, and at times a loss of circulation in my left arm. No chest pain. Over the past year my BP has risen significantly (130-160 over 90-100).


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