I am not a medical professional, but am just sharing here my own experience with a-fib and something that seems to be working for me.
I was diagnosed with a-fib about five years ago. I've been on cardizem, which helped some and am now on Sotalol, which has worked even better for me. Because I have a naturally low heart rate, and Sotalol can lower it even more, I'm on a lower dose than I guess you can have. But, it has helped since I've been on it starting in Feb. of 2009. However, I did still have "break through" episodes on occasion.
Recently, I discovered something by accident that has helped me - the chiropractor. I went in because I had pain and tension in my neck and upper back. I've been to chiropractors before, but this was a different person than I've been to previously. He also does acupuncture, which I've not had.
I went 2-3 times the first couple of weeks and then he suggested coming about once a month. It seemed I would generally feel the need to go in about every 3 or 3 1/2 weeks, instead of the recommended 4. After 2-3 months it suddenly occurred to me that I hadn't been in afib much for quite some time. I then realized that the only episodes I had had coincided with the time frame right before I would schedule an appointment. I started going about every three weeks, instead of waiting until I felt the need, and the a-fib has been "in remission" since then. At some point I asked the doctor if there was anything he could do for a-fib, without telling him what I had noticed. His reply was that he wasn't sure it would help a-fib, but he was working on the heart meridian and using acupressure techniques in addition to chiropractic.
When I had my six month follow up with the cardiologist, he was thrilled with how my heart sounded. I told him of my observations and his response was to keep doing it if it was working.
Recently I called to schedule to discover my chiropractor was on vacation. So, I had a longer wait than usual. Even though it was a longer time frame I only had one minor breakthrough episode.
I'm not sure what is involved, and if it's something that will work for other people, but it seems to be working for me.
So... that's from the "for what it's worth" department.
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Patsy this is what my friend had that landed her in ICU this last weekend.
They shocked her heart twice and that did not work so they have put her on meds but are talking pace maker. I will share this with her.
A-fib is very scary the first time you have it bad enough to go to the ER. I've never been shocked - mine has always been pretty mild by comparison. My mom had a pace maker (not for a-fib) and did very well with it. Hope all goes smoothly for your friend.
My a-fib is under control with flecainide. I'm glad the acupressure seems to be working for you. I really hate the feeling of a turkey trying to beat its way out of your chest.
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