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My experience with AVNRT and cryoablation

Mar 02, 2013 - 1 comments














I lived with my AVNRT without too many issues until I was pregnant 15 years after being diagnosed.  It HAD gotten worse over the years but I never had to get adenosine until a horrible episode during labor.  I had to wait an hour or so for the drug until after I'd gotten my epidural.  Three weeks later my AVNRT was back and acted up fairly often.  Taking care of a child and dealing with it was not fun.  I had cryoablation in November of 2011.  My EP did the first RF ablation in Texas back in the late 1980s and has done over 3700 ablations in all.  He is still relatively young and a fan of cryoablation for AVNRT and I liked that the risks are fewer with it.  The procedure itself was a breeze.  I was out for it, and it did not last too long since my AVNRT started up right away.  

All was great afterwards.  There was no recovery per se.  I felt occasional ectopic beats, sometimes a few a day and sometimes none.  Eight months later I had what I think was a terrible bout of ectopics (dropping sensation in the chest) unlike anything I've ever felt.  That happened a few times, one of which was followed by what I thought was a recurrence.  Now I am not so sure about the recurrence part.  I wore monitors which only picked up PVCs and a few PACs.  By October 2012 I was feeling dozens of often very strong PVCs a day.  Now, in March of 2013, I am still feeling daily PVCs.  Some are very weak so there seems to have been improvement at least in strength if not numbers.  I am hopeful that this will improve, but I have been very affected by this experience.  

I thought that I just had to get through the actual ablation and then the worst that could happen is that the SVT could come back.  I was not prepared to deal with daily issues.  I understand that PVCs are not dangerous, but they are not pleasant.  My anxiety comes in when I think that I will have to feel these every day for the rest of my life.  I fell into moderate depression with anxiety and started Lexapro in December 2012.  It is helping but I really want more improvement.  

I know that everyone has ectopic beats and most do not feel them, or most of them.  I know that I had them before as the SVT requires an ectopic to trigger it, and I know that I had some I didn't feel that did not trigger the SVT (since only a perfectly timed ectopic can trigger it).  On the one hand many EPs say the ablation does not cause them long-term after the initial inflammation has subsided.  I get that the ablation does not cause the actual irritable spot, especially in my case as the beats are coming from the ventricles and the ablation occurred in the atrium.  On the other hand, a number of people I have come across have experienced similar issues, with their ectopics not necessarily starting until months after the ablation.  So I am left wondering about the connection.

I feel my PVCs mainly when sitting or resting, so I am not sure that a beta blocker will help.  But if things do not improve to my satisfaction this year then I am willing to try.  If anyone has suggestions or encouragement please message me.  I don't want to hear anything discouraging either.  This is not to minimize anyone's feelings.  It is just not good for my anxiety.  I do not read the boards because it fuels my anxiety.  Thanks for reading, and I wish you happiness and health!

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Avatar universal
by CS3218, Mar 31, 2013
It seems like I have seen additional improvement over the last month.  Improvement is slow, so I need to measure it in months as opposed to days or weeks.  Sometimes I wonder if I am imagining the improvement, but when I think back to October and November I KNOW I have seen improvement.  Hopefully it continues.

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