"I now know that if it happens again to go straight to A&E."
Posted by sanlam (as ),
I was sure that there was something wrong with me in November 2011. My heart was beating erratically so I went to my GP who told me to go to the Freeman Hospital for an ECG. This showed that I had persistent atrial fibrilation. I was given some bisoporal and told to see my GP which I did the next day. He put me on aspirin and I was told to wait to see a cardiologist and I waited six weeks for this, all the time feeling anxious and worried. During the six weeks I went to the GP twice to ask to be put on warfarin because of the risk of stroke but this was refused. I saw the cardiologist and was then put on warfarin and told I could have a cardioversion when my international normalised ratio was within range for four weeks.
This took until April the following year. The time delay was worrying me because I thought that it might be difficult to get my heart rhythm back to normal after such a long time. I went into Atrial Fibrillation in January probably due to alcohol which I totally avoid now and went to A&E. They immediately put me on an anti-coagulant and other drugs and was discharged to get my international normalised ratio in range for four weeks. This took 2 months (March 2014) and I am still in normal sinus rhythm.
When I look back I believe I was left in a potentially risk situation without an anticoagulant despite being in persistent Atrial Fibrillation. I now know that if it happens again to go straight to A&E. Otherwise it will take weeks and weeks to get cardiology care.