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Cardiac Ablation question regarding sedation.

I have an ablation next week to try and correct frequent PVC's I've been having for about 8 Years.

My understanding is that sedation can "calm" the heart.

I'm considering pushing for LITTLE TO NO SEDATION

Am I crazy?  The point of this is not to be comfortable... Rather the point is to FIX the problem. Therefore I want the best environment for the problem to occur.

I can't see how an ablation could be painful. There are no nerves inside the heart are there?

What am I missing here...why do people ask for sedation Or even GA for this procedure?
3 Responses
1423357 tn?1511085442
The process can be lengthy, and you will be required to lay perfectly still throughout.  That alone will lead to discomfort.  The  actual ablation process employs the heating of tissue, an actual burn.  The experience is said to be uncomfortable to painful.  While I underwent the procedure, I had general sedation and remember absolutely nothing after scooting from my bed to the lab table.  So I can't tell you from my experience or if there was any pain involved.  Now, I been around this forum for over 8 years, and have seen a lot of people come and go.
Some people endured the experience with minor pain.  Several forum members reported pain severe enough that they began squirming and the procedure was stopped and scheduled with sedation.  Others were frightened to a point that the procedure was never commenced beyond the leg puncture.   Another factor to consider is the comfort of the electrophysiologist.  He wants to be able to focus on his task, rather than your physical comfort.  If he knows your sedated and can feel nothing, he can proceed with confidence.  I would suggest that you forget about what you've read regarding the procedure. and rely on the experience of the electrophysiologist to determine if you need sedation or not.  I also wish you luck, and I hope they can locate eliminate the source of your issues.
1 Comments
Tom thank you.   I've actually read some of your posts Regarding your ablation and they've been helpful.

The last line of your post makes sense"forget what you've read... trust your EP."

I was against ablation until meeting this E P
He is well respected and a good deal of experience

He was very honest with me in that he has alot of success ablating RVOT pvc's.

He did tell me that bused On my 10 second ECG where I threw a few vPC's that they "might" be epicardial and if so he will make the call if he will ablate.

My goal is to:

I. See if there are any dangerous inducible arrhythmias

2. See if the PVC focus can be ablated.

Thanks for the lengthy reply and advice.  
Avatar universal
I had an EP study awake but very comfortable. They do give you some sort of medication to where you are awake but out of it. The plan was to do the study like that and if he got what he needed to proceed with ablation he would then put me out. He couldn't provoke my arrythmia's long enough for mapping and so I didn't have the ablation.

I didn't feel any pain from the actual study that I recall. I felt my heart racing and pounding but it didnt hurt.
2 Comments
Thanks for the reply.  I can't imagine much if any pain from the procedure itself.  I've read some weird stories about people saying it "hurt" but that really doesn't make any sense to me how it would "hurt".

I believe they felt pain but just doesn't make sense how.

That being said I'm not worried about being comfortable for the procedure.  I want it to work so I'll take the pain threshold or discomfort threshold as long as my mind will let me take it.  These PVC's are ridiculous and hopefully my Dr. finds them and gets rid of them.

If not at least I'll know if they can/cannot induce a serious arrhythmia of some sort.

Thanks again.
I dont know if they will do it without the calming shot where you are but my dr would not...  The going through the groin did hurt me but I think only because it was done before I was fully medicated. I ended up jerking my leg and a nerve was hit and I had a lot of pain in my leg and hip afterwards..

I dont know if its possibly too feel pain in the heart or not but they say you cant feel pain from your liver cause it also has no nerves but liver pain is common due to the Glissons capsule that surrounds it. Maybe its something like that? I really don't know. I had a cardiac cath the same way with just the calming medicine. I didn't feel any pain but I did feel the cather in there. I know that sounds weird but it's the truth.

Good luck with your procedure. I hope the dr gets what he/she needs and is able to move to ablation.
Avatar universal
I had very little sedation during my ablation, some people describe twilight sleep, but I was definitely awake the whole time. I genuinely don't think the sedation did an awful lot, it made the room spin for a few seconds but I didn't feel at all sleepy or out of it!! So if you're keen on staying awake, I think you'll be fine. My procedure wasn't very long though, I think about 2 hours in total.

In terms of the actual ablation, whilst some people freaked me out beforehand and said it was very sore, mine was fine. The ablating only lasts a minute or so at a time and is very bearable, I didn't feel the need to ask for any pain killers at any time, I think I would have to describe it as intense heart burn, it felt like it travelled down my arm and was more sore there than in my chest! But definitely bearable and didn't linger.

Let us know how you get on! Good luck :)
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