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HI, I'd like to know if anyone here has had a cryoablation or Radio Frequency ablation procedure to get rid of PAC's (premature atrial contractions), PVC's (premature ventricular contractions), or any type of heart arrhythmias?

Which type of arrhythmias did you do it for and did it work for you? Did you have any complications? Did you feel anything during the procedure and how did you feel after, any pain, etc? Did you have any heart disease prior to surgery or did you have an otherwise healthy heart?

I might do an EP study and cryoablation for PVC's and PAC's. I'll be meeting the Electrophysiologist for a consult in a few weeks to see what can be done.

I have a healthy heart other than these arrhythmias which seem to be getting worse with time. I'm 35. A few weeks ago, after ignoring them for 4 days, they got so bad I had to go to ER. Before this ER visit, I had only been having PAC's, which feel bad but are not harmful. I've worn monitors several times in the past and have never had PVC's which I found at the last ER visit my heart is now having those too.

I have asthma so I can't do beta blockers.
I have low blood pressure so I can't do calcium channel blockers.
Digoxin from what I've read is not intended for younger people because it can lower life span due to over working the heart muscle and there's too much risk for toxicity. All other medication options are not meant for younger people because of random things like causing scarring in the pulmonary arteries in the long run.
I had a lot of chest pain the last time I went to ER, and shortness of breath.
I had 7 PVC's straight without a normal beat between. I was having about 3 PVC's and then a normal beat or two on average at the ER that night.

My cardiologist just wants to medicate but agrees there's nothing I can take. So I told him I looked into ablation procedures. He tried to shoot it down, saying it would be better if I can learn to just "live with them".
If any of you have these, you know what it's like to try to just live with it. It's hell.

I spoke to an electrophysiologists nurse on the phone to aks questions and tell her what my cardiologist said. She said most cardiologists in our area wont make a referral because of politics and they want to keep us as "their" patient. They make money just medicating the problem. If the problem's fixed, the cardiologist looses a patient. She said 98% of their referrals are from primary care dr's.
I told her about my problem and she said there's no reason to suffer if something can be done to get rid of it unless that's what I choose to do but that I do have options besides medications (which i can't take) or just suffering.
If my insurance wont pay for it, I'm going to pay cash because my quality of life is being affected and I'm just over it.

I'm gonna go for it! So please, let me know your experiences asap.
I'll let you all know every thing from start to finish along the way as I do this in case any of you are thinking of doing this too.

Thank you in advance!
I wish you the absolute best! I posted a message for you on the other board so I am going to try and keep this short but in case someone reads this post and not the other one I just wanted to say I had what seems to be 3 weeks out a very successful ablation for AVNRT. The first few weeks I had a few PAC's and thumps but after around the 2 week point nothing but a nice calm quiet heart! I feel like someone gave me a transplant! I had the RF ablation because I wanted to have the chance at the highest success rate if I was to undergo the procedure. Since the chance of RF complications is very low I felt good about the odds. I wish you the very best with your procedure, come back and tell us about your success! We need more success stories on here! I feel so bad for the A-Fib folks but they post the most and I think that may scare off some regular SVT folks from getting an ablation. It's important to not play doctor but to encourage everyone to get a good opinion from an electrophysiologist because we are all different and some SVT's have a much, much higher cure rate through ablation then A-Fib although they keep progressing with that as well! Best Wishes Everyone!
Thanks for your post and come back every now and then to let us know how you're doing!

Anyone here have cryoablation for heart arrhythmias?

RF or cryo, either way, please post your experience. My time to do this is growing nearer and I need to hear more.

No one else????
Anyone here have an ablation for a heart arrhythmia?
How was it? Did it work for you?
I recently had an RF ablation for PACs and atrial tachycardia (PSVT).

My ablation was successful because my doc was able to identify and burn out the main spot causing the heart irregularity. I am lucky for this.

The procedure itself was not pleasant. You can feel your heart being burned. The heart medication they give you speeds your heart up and causes your diaphragm to jump out of your ribcage.

I had no complications during the ablation but afterwards it completely wiped me out for over a week. I had some complications. I had weakness, fatigue, leg cramps, pain in the entry site and along the veins where they inserted the catheters, dizziness, a burning sensation in my heart, and air hunger. I felt I was suffocating.

My heart is a little irritable still, it goes tachy several times a day for no reason, but I have had zero PACS and PSVT episodes since having this done.

I would recommend an ablation to anyone who's life or heart is being ruined by ectopics, a-fib or atrial tachycardia. Contrary to what some docs say, that is PAC/PVCs aren't "harmful" and can't kill you, incessant ectopic beats can damage your heart causing a cardiomyopathy that leads to heart failure.

But...If all you're having is a couple PSVT episodes per year, an ablation is not for you.

The procedure has dangerous risks like stroke, death, needing a pacemaker, damaged diaphragm, infection, development of a worse rhythm, or requiring open heart surgery to correct a hole burned in the heart. And it is not pleasant to recover from.
I had my ablation just last winter, at age 49. I had AVNRT and that secondary node was successfully ablated and my heart feels so much less clunky now...
nice! I still have ectopic atrial tachycardia. It was not possible for the doctor to find and ablate my extra pathways. He says that I can have a second ablation but that is no guarantee of a permanent, 100% solution. I am on Verapamil now and I do get sensations of tachy, but nothing long lasting develops. It doesn't feel like a time bomb anymore, and I'm so grateful for that.
I read the post before mine and I have to say, it scared the poop out of me.
That was SO NOT MY EXPERIENCE. My ablation was totally a piece of cake.
I had a tooth extraction that was more uncomfortable. I was given some mild sedation and felt the tachycardia being brought on, but I did not feel any pain at all. Just a little tugging from the catheters. No biggie.
I would have loved to report that I am cured, but I'm not. However, I am still happy that I had my ablation. It DID help. I would go through it again
in a heartbeat!! Does it sound extreme? Yes. Should you jump into it without doing your research and interviewing different cath doctors? No. Yet I am happy with my choice and am here to tell you that on a scale of 1-10 of pain, my procedure was not even a 1.
I'm with Braveheart, this is an awesome procedure! Sure you feel the burning (they found my pathway(s) but it's not that bad. I asked if that was normal and I was told yes and my heart was racing but it did that for decades. It's all in your attitude. I was excited for my surgery! I laid there during surgery telling myself that after today I was going to be a new woman! And I am! I had the surgery on Friday, Feb 26th, 2010, was back to work Monday. I'm 51. One thought for you, Braveheart. Do you work out? After my surgery I had some tachycardia (3 episodes for the first 3 months) and I started to workout 2 hours a day about 5 weeks post-op and my heart is very quiet now. On occasion I get a thump but those couple of extra beats on occasion never go away and who cares, people with normal hearts often have them too. But with my lifestyle (vegetarian diet, lots of exercise) I think I might just be cured! I feel bad you are taking medication the point for me of the ablation was never to have to take medication (even before the ablation I would go to the ER for adenosine as opposed to taking ongoing drug therapy as meds scare me...I had a terrible reaction to a heart drug and had bad chest pains ended up in intensive care). I do agree with the one poster who said that this is not as benign as they say it is. I do feel it can lead to heart problems espicially once you are over 40. I also believe trying to avoid taking heart medicine is important. You can take it for years and one day it can kill or almost kill you (been there). Sometimes there is no choice for some problems you must take meds but if you can get an ablation and have a permanent cure, I wouldn't think twice. If I had to do two ablations I would be disappointed but personally I would do that rather than take meds all my life. Been there, done that, had a bad reaction (thank goodness it was while I was in the ER or I honestly think I would have died as my heart went into ventricular tachycardia and I had shooting pains in my heart). Heart medicine is dangerous. Ablation has a high rate of permanent cure. Side effects that are deadly from an ablation are rare. One day will change most peoples lives forever. I "used" to have AVNRT. My ablation cured it! Best Wishes everyone!
What a coincidence, you and I both had our ablations on the same day! (the "226" in my screenname is for Febbruary 26th, LOL) I do exercise, but need to make it more of a habit. It's rather hit or miss for me. I HATE having to be on medication but was happy to have avoided that, opting for Adenosine in the ER, for ten whole years. As my parents both have high blood pressure and Verapamil is also used for that, although I wish I didn't have to medicate, I do notice that it DOES help my breakthrough arrythmias. I'm so happy for you that you found your cure. You go, girl !!

Thanks, Braveheart. Hopefully the heart will settle down even more for you! I am to the point that when I get an occasional skip or thump I'm funny is that after what we have lived with! February 26th is only about 4 months out I've read that it takes almost a year for some people's hearts to settle down mine about 3months post-op. Yes...I had plenty of those ER visits to get adenosine...for 18 years. Most were good but a couple put me into a bad rhythm. The last into ventricular tachycardia made me get the ablation. As I got older the attacks got more frequent. For 6 months when I may have been in menopause at 50 about a year ago I was having 4 a month and my heart seemed ready to take off at anytime. I think anyone approaching menopause would be wise to get an ablation (or before childbirth because it really acted up for me at that point too but back then ablation wasn't even mentioned nor did I have a diagnosis). You take care and I hope things get better for you my friend.
I posted this thread several months ago so here's an update......

I was pregnant... Had my son... then soon after started having PAC's PVC's on a regular basis. I had an EP tests scheduled and was on my way to doing cyroablation. The pac's and pvc's were driving me nuts and making me feel terrible..............................

Then out of no where after that last ER visit I posted about I stopped having them. At first for a while I'd have maybe one or two a week then less and less.... Now I don't have them. None that I can feel anyway.

Women's hair falls out some after pregnancy and mine was.... My dermatologist said it could take up to a year to stop in some people so I ignored it.

I stopped losing weight and was stuck with the extra 15 pounds I had left to lose after pregnancy. I had 30 pounds right after pregnancy to lose which I lost 1/2 of very quickly and then it just stopped no matter what I did or ate.

I started having cold chills all the time........

Was SOOOOOO tired which I figured was from not getting good sleep being a new mommy and having to get up often through the night....

Then I started having mood swings which I figured was either post pregnancy hormones or early menopause....

My heart rate for a while after pregnancy stayed high around 99 to 104bpm or so but at this point it was staying between 60 -70bpm which I thought was odd since I had not been exercising and for sure not in good shape.

Then my joint pains became much more than just achy joints... They were SO sore I thought I may have some major arthritis setting in or something...

Soon after, my muscles were often sore for no reason and I was feeling very weak, unmotivated and a little on the depressed side. I couldn't muster up the energy to do hardly anything.

I went to my PCP to check to see if I had some sort of cancer or hormone issues... I couldn't imagine what was making me feel so terrible all the time.................

My test results showed that I had Hypothyroidism and my TSH numbers were pretty bad.
I see an Endo dr to start me on Thyroid medicine soon.

Point is........ Some women after pregnancy can develove Postpartum Thyroid issues and it mostly starts from what I've read, as Hyperthyroid which is where your thyroid makes too much hormone and can cause all the heart problems I was having with the PAC's and PVC's. Then after a few months of producing too much hormone... It swings into not producing enough thyroid hormone and you end up with hypothyroidism that causes all the issues I am having now.

I'm very happy that ablation worked for all of you but I am SO glad that mine stopped and all these other issues started because I may have done the ablation to no avail when all I needed was to treat my out of whack thyroid.

I'm the type of person who jumps into getting better even if it means surgery and though my heart dr tried to talk me out of the ablation I just couldn't live with pac's and pvc's so I was going to do ablation or die trying.

Thank GOD I didn't (in my case) and thank God I had different labs done to find the root of my problem which luckily for me is very easily treatable.

This was a big lesson learned for me to slow down.... Investigate ALL possibilities BEFORE I jump the gun and do something drastic.

Good luck all and I wish you well...............
Glad you're okay. Thanks for sharing this. It's good info for newly delivered moms.

You were scheduled for an EP study with a potential for an ablation should they find an area(s) to ablate. In your case, they wouldn't have found any areas. (Since the cause of your ectopics was from a thyroid problem.)

Your thyroid should have been checked FIRST thing, way before an EP study was scheduled. It's negligent medicine to have not done this test on you based on your symptoms.
I think the key here is that you didn't have SVTs but rather PACs and PVCs and maybe some basic tachycardia. I would not have an ablation for those and certainly that isn't the same as an SVT!! After my pregnancy my heart rate went into an SVT (heart rate between 160 and 250). If you heart rate goes this high you are having an SVT and the only cure is an ablation or meds. I wanted to share this because I don't want someone having an SVT thinking their problem will go away, it will not. If you have SVTs they may come and go, be worse or better at some point in your life but they are caused by a heart problem, not a thyroid problem. Also, an EKG can diagnose the type of SVT and heart rhythm issue. Your doctors seem to have simply misdiagnosed you from the start. Regardless, I'm happy you are fine! I do not however want someone with an SVT thinking that they could get away without an ablation and their problem will just go away. Sorry though that you were misdiagnosed, an arrythmia can have many causes but someone with a heart rate of 160 - 250 has a definite problem with the heart itself and will not be a thyroid or other problem. Just wanted to clear that up. I lived with SVTs for over 25 years. Take care.
If the EKG shows a heart rate of 160 or above and the EKG shows an need for a thyroid test in that case, it will end up be SVT or some type of heart issue. But I'm assuming you are saying in the case of the PACs and PVCs only and with that I totally agree. I think she was misdiagnosed.
Thank you for pointing that out about PAC/PVCs and ablations.

Atrial Fibrillation also needs meds or an ablation to treat it.

When anyone has a heart beat irregularity, there are things that must be done BEFORE an EP study is scheduled:

[B]1) Thyroid test for all: T3, T4 and TSH. [/B]

TSH level test itself isn't enough because if you're having level swings, the test could be just happen to be taken when you're in mid swing and you'd get a false normal

[B]2) Holter monitor for at least 24 hours [/B]

[B]3) Echo for structural problems, like mitral valve prolapse[/B]

An EP study has risks, even without an ablation done at the same time. It is a catheterization procedure that should not be done unless absolutely necessary.
Absolutely A-fib as well. I just wanted to share what I did because having tachycardia and PACs really shouldn't have an EP study. I do have to say thought that an ablation is a wonderful option for anyone with SVT's. A-fib is a little more complex than the rest but personally I wish I would have had my ablation sooner. It was 2 1/2 hours, the risk of complications is very low and it is a permanent cure in many cases of SVT. I had AVNRT which is a common form and the cure rate is extremely high for that type of SVT. I just didn't want someone with a heart rate of 160 - 250 to believe it could be a thyroid problem or have them assume it will go away. I thought that when I first had SVTs and they may slow down for awhile but the only cure for SVTs is ablation or medication. Thyroid medicine will actually make someone with an SVT worse. I had hypothyroidism and when they gave me medicine for it I had an SVT for an entire scary weekend. So, someone with both conditions that would take thyroid medicine could have an SVT complication. Best to go to an electrophysiologist with an EKG strip from an ER when your SVT is happening and let them diagnose the type of heart issue you have.
I'm glad you posted this because you're right. It is from what I've read a great option for SVT. I wrote in my last post saying "in my case". A person should always do their homework about their issues and not skip any tests that could be related.
I can't remember exactly but I think I read that the heart beat with "hyper"-thyroid it's not usually over 120 and with SVT attacks it's much higher.
I am pending a consult with an EP doctor as well and am also considering ablation for SVT, PAC's and PVC's. I was diagnosed in October and am on a beta blocker but with break thru and lots of symptoms. I can't take a higher dose of meds because my blood pressure does not need to be lower. I am 40 years old and am otherwise healthy. I am not certain what type of ablation I'm seeking yet...I worked in cardiology for 15 years and in fact EP for 5 of those years. I know EP studies are done routinely as well as ablations but now that I am in a position of need, it does not seem routine at all!
I will watch for more replies to your post as I am also interested in other peoples experiences.
Please post your journey as well...I'll be reading it!
Best of luck to you!
I'm 22 and was diagnosied with SVT last yr. I took me going to 4 diffierent cardiologist's to finally find one who would do something to help me. I think the others just blew me off and It was very frustrating, cause I would faint w/o any warning!
I to have asthma, but my cadiologist has me on a beta blocker ( Metoprolol) and i have done fine on it. My Cardiologist has talked to me about ablation, but since I'm doing fine on medication we've decided not to rush into surgery. Good Luck!
I was born with a congenital heart defect, tetralogy of fallot, and VSD. I have ventricular tachycardia and had the ablation done on July 30, 2010 and yes it worked for me. They weren't able to ablate everything, but they did get rid of most of what was causing my heart to race. They had to implant an ICD just in case and I have been shocked by it once.

I did not have any complications with the procedure other than a little dizziness for the first couple hours, but that could've been from hunger or a side effect of the anesthetic. There was a warm sensation in my chest, but I found it comforting, like a warm blanket. I know other people find it uncomfortable though. I did not feel anything during the procedure because, like I said, I was put under anesthetic and was done so by my request.

Afterwards, I felt absolutely incredible. I felt like I could breathe easier, I didn't have any palpitations (except for the first few days which they said is normal), I could walk/run up stairs without my heart racing, etc. It was the most amazing I've ever felt in my life. I will say that the palpitations have returned but I believe my condition has worsened by my own fault since the ablation. They said that if it gets any worse, they'll probably have to do another ablation in the future.

I was scared to do this at first also, but after talking to my doctors more, I got more comfortable with it. Honestly, its worth it to go through because you will feel a billion times better. Like you, my episodes got worse over time to the point where my heart was beating at 300 bpm for about an hour and a half and I passed out and had to be resuscitated. The doctors said I was very close to going into cardiac arrest, so my condition was quite serious. With the tachycardia, I was so sick of always being tired, drowsy, inactive, unable to go out with my friends, unable to exercise or lift heavy objects, etc. I'm 21 years old and I was living a pretty sheltered life for awhile and I was sick of it, so I got the ablation done and went right back to a normal life.

I did go through a whole bunch of tests for a couple months beforehand, like MRI's, heart cath's, ECHO's, etc. But it is definitely worth it and I highly recommend getting the ablation done! I have nothing but good things to say about it. Its an incredible procedure, especially if you have the right people to do it. I was lucky and had the best EP's in Canada work on me.

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