Author Topic: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?  (Read 2603 times)


  • Timelord
Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #50 on: December 15, 2019, 08:39:43 pm »
Anyway, I think we'll see, in the future, health warnings issued with e-bikes because the very people they are designed to benefit will be having heart attacks just trying to lift them over kerbs or up garden steps!

This isn't far from what the SCIENCE coming out of the Netherlands suggests.  E-bikes aren't dangerous because they go fast, they're dangerous because they're used by vulnerable and/or inexperienced cyclists, and the main risk is through falls at low speed and when mounting/dismounting.

(I'm also impressed that my lifting-impaired friend's 700c e-bike can push itself up a standard-height kerb in a controlled manner using the thumb control 'walk mode'.  Makes a big difference.)

Anyway, what Basil (and barakta) said.  I'm used to lungs being rubbish, but hearts are scary!
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #51 on: December 16, 2019, 08:12:03 am »
That is a right bugger of a thing to happen, Peter.

I wouldn't think too lowly of a nurse practitioner, actually. In my experience, they are absolute specialists, highly focused on the patient and interested in the subject area. More observant of patient behaviour, wellbeing and feelings than some specialists.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #52 on: December 16, 2019, 11:26:34 am »
Thanks, everyone, for the advice and encouragement.

Charley, I too have been impressed with the nurse practitioners I've seen (only a couple), so I do respect their expertise and concern.  However, I'm not sure that in this case an appointment with a NP six weeks down the line, is quite what my doctor and the echocardiologists had in mind when they were visibly shocked by my "figures".  Maybe it'll all be fine but I think I should push a little first.

@ Basil  Ha!


Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #53 on: December 30, 2019, 11:04:33 pm »
Hi Peter,

Firstly I have to admit that I've not read every thread in this chain, so apologies if I'm repeating everything.

I was diagnosed with Ab Fib about 5 years ago when I was at my peak physical fitness, running 3 or 4 marathons a year, loads of Halves, and dozens of cycling events.

I had cardioversion which lasted about 2 weeks and shortly after this failed had the ablation op. Since then I still get the odd event which can last up to a few days. They typically come on when I have the perfect storm of too much caffeine, booze and stress. Each of which I try to manage but sometimes can be hard. My last event was after a week that involved a wedding (booze) , job interview (stress) and doing a 43 hour week in 3 days (stress and caffeine)  to accommodate the first two.

I was on blood thinners for about a year and rhythm drugs for a bit longer after the op. I'm now pretty much drug free except for one tablet to reduce my blood pressure.

There's a lot of risk factors for Ab Fib, I was told mine was a lone event, in that it didn't indicate any underlying heart problems, but that it was brought on by too much endurance sport ( hence the comments above) . Apparently it's very common in anybody over 70, men are more susceptible, possibly due to body mass. Bigger men (I don't really mean fat) are much more likely to have it than small women. Excessive fitness is a contributing factor as it can cause the heart to grow larger and fibrous which can create problems with the electrical wiring.

There's some evidence that taking Magnesium can help reduce the symptoms. It seems to work for me.

If you want to learn everything about it, there's a great book called The Haywire Heart' by Chris Case that's well worth reading, but settle in to read it, it's not an easy reader.

I'm back running and cycling, but not as much as I was. I've been told never to do another marathon but haven't been imposed any restrictions on cycling as the consultant seemed to think it was far more sedentary than running and who was I to correct him 😙.

Good luck. It's not the end of the world and a lot of people can get back to almost the same activity levels that they were at beforehand. There's a lot of stuff on the web about it and numerous groups on Facebook where you can chat with people with similar conditions.


  • car(e) free
    • Lost Byway - around the world by bike
Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #54 on: December 30, 2019, 11:24:16 pm »
Peter, this had all passed me by until now but I'm sorry to hear it, you sound like you've got far too much on your plate.  I'll be thinking of you and hoping you find a treatment with the minimum of stress.  All the best.

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #55 on: December 30, 2019, 11:40:45 pm »
I meant to mention that you can get home use EKG monitors reasonably cheap. Here's a link.

I have one but am not sure that want to post a specific link to it as I don't think that I'd totally recommend it. It's ability to read heart traces seems ok, but it's quite tweaky to use.

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #56 on: December 31, 2019, 04:43:22 pm »
Redjeep and Karla, thank you for the posts, info., and good wishes, they are very much appreciated.

I have actually had a consultation with a cardiologist now, and he was fairly sanguine.  When I asked him if I was likely to drop dead, he said, "We all have to die sometime!", which I think I take as "It's possible".  He thinks my heart is in a bad way and one that would probably have killed me, had it NOT been for my otherwise healthy lifestyle.  Really, the only two factors that are likely to be involved (apart from genetics) are stress (which is a big one, I'm afraid) and cholesterol, for which I have pretty good figures.  On this latter, the consultant wants me to have an angiogram to check the state of my arteries, so that will be the next "intervention".  He has also doubled my beta-blocker dose and introduced essence of foxglove.  He also said I don't look my age - which is actually a medical condition, apparently.
I check my heart-rate regularly and it does seem to be coming down gradually.  So, though I'm fed-up with the overall situation, I'm trying to remain optimistic (the consultant remembered at the last minute about being encouraging and said it was quite possible I'd be back on the bike before long because the drugs are much better than what was available 20 years ago).

I'm also taking encouragement from all the advice from fellow-sufferers and other friends on here.  Thank you again!

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #57 on: December 31, 2019, 06:59:58 pm »
Peter, no problem.  Good luck with all this.

There are a few good groups on Facebook such as 'Parkrun for people with heart conditions' which you may find helpful and supportive. Sometimes it's just good to know that you're not alone. There used  to be a very good thread on the Runner's World forum with numerous people who'd been through it and returned, mostly, to running. I can't find it now but if I do I'll post it here. 

If I can be of any help please feel free to PM me.

Re: Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Rate Monitoring Help?
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2019, 08:47:52 pm »
I think Steve redgrave had to consider this which suggests that cyclists are the same.  As I remember, his heart was so big and strong that he had to continue training after he stopped competing in order to allow his heart muscle to atrophy (shrink) safely.  The risk was that he would end up with less heart muscle but the same size and would therefore have floppy walls and risk clotting in his ventricles.

However this is half remembered and may be wrong

That’s what I have heard as well.
If you don’t make time for exercise now, sooner or later you’ll need to make time for ill health.