Pacemaker now fitted

Well, I had the pacemaker implanted last Wednesday.  It was not as straightforward as I had anticipated as the cardio could not get the wires into the correct position because of scar tissue from my previous ablations.  He nearly gave up at one point and through the fog of morphine and sedative, I heard him say he was going to try the other side.  But he did not need to in the end.  It took 2 1/2  hours and I was given a lot of morphine and sedative.  Later, I felt utterly awful, dizzy and very sick.

I have spent a quiet few days at home now, feeling quite emotional and hoping it was the right decision.  Of course, I have not been sleeping because it was painful, but last night I did get a few hours, so today am feeling a bit more like myself.

Next step is the AV node ablation in 6 weeks.


2 Comments

Morphine? Really?

by AgentX86 - 2019-02-17 20:45:54

Morphine would be really unusual for pacemaker implant surgery.  I don't see the point in it, really.  Most are done with a local and just something to take the edge off.  I just had a local in my shoulder and one in the leg for the AV ablation (I've been in your shoes).  I was wide awake for the whole thing and carried on a conversation with the doctor puting in the pacemaker.  There was some (pretty intense at times) pain when they were making the pocket but otherwise it was nothing.

Buyer's remorse is pretty common in this group.  That's all it is.  IMO, you did the right thing.  You won't have to worry about AF anymore. Though you will have to be on an anticoagulant (you will still have AF episodes, though you most likely won't even know it) there will no longer be a need for any antiarrhythmics or anything else for your AF.  Antiarrhythmics are all really nasty drugs so you don't need to worry about those side effects.  Your EP may keep you on a beta blocker or calcium channel blocker, at least for the time being. I'm still on metoprolol because I'm having PVCs and it helps with my BP.

I found that sleeping in a recliner helped a lot.  I didn't sleep in the bed for a couple of months.  I'm a stomach sleeper and I didn't want to wake up after rolling over on that side.  I learned that trick after my CABG surgery.  I slept in a recliner for five months after that.  We put one in our bedroom next to the bed.

I think you'll find that being free of the symptoms of AF will be more than worth the short-term pain you're having now.  The AV ablation will be nothing compared to what you've been through so well on your way to being free of AF symptoms. You'll do fine.

Morphine

by Theresa52 - 2019-02-18 05:31:31

Hi - thanks for your comments.  Yes, that's the way they do it here in the UK.  I didn't have any local that I was aware of, just this nurse behind my head, pumping antibiotics, sedative and morphine into me.  I also had to have this awful small tent thing put over my face - they said it was to keep things sterile, but I felt claustrophobic.  They said later that I had had a ton of morphine, so no wonder I felt awful.

I have devised this wonderful method for keeping my arm from raising up when I am asleep.  I put a bangle bracelet on my arm,  and thread the bit of front cord from my pj bottoms through it and presto!  Can't raise my arm.

I am glad to hear I am not the only one who wonders if I did the right thing.  The alternative would have been to go on ending up in A&E every month.

I have read your profile and see you are the same age as me.  You have had a lot of problems and I feel for you.  Hope things are more settled now, and thank you for taking the time to encourage me.

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Member Quotes

I feel so blessed to have this little gem implanted in me. When I think of the alternative it is quite overwhelming sometimes.