A-Fib Patient Story #89
In A-Fib for 15 Years, Eventually is Incapacitated, Unable to Work
By Terry Traver, Thousand Oaks, CA, September 2016
I’m a sixty-five year-old male and live in southern California. I am writing this because, as great as Steve’s site [A-Fib.com] is, there aren’t many stories from the west coast.
For over 15 years I suffered with A-Fib. It was not so bad. I stopped using caffeine and chocolate and cut back on my [alcohol] drinking.
Every three months or so I would have an episode that would last about 15 hours and then I would be fine.
Meds never really helped in my case.
A-Fib Progresses to the Point Where I Can’t Work
In 2011, my A-Fib became severe to the point where I was almost completely incapacitated [Persistent Atrial Fibrillation]. I was not even able to work.
Luckily, through a friend I was put in touch with Dr. Anil K. Bhandari, a clinical Electrophysiologist (EP)] at Los Angeles Cardiology Associates in downtown Los Angeles.
Ablation and a Touch-up at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles
In March 2012, I went in to Good Samaritan Hospital for a catheter ablation (wonderful Hospital and staff). I knew I was a difficult case, so I was not surprised when I had to return in July 2012 for a second touch up ablation (I think Dr. Bhandari was more disappointed than I was).
I knew I was a difficult case, so I was not surprised when I had to return in July 2012 for a second touch up ablation.
Afterwards, no sign of A-Fib. I felt great! At my 30 day return visit and I was told to use up the remainder of my meds and then discontinue them.
A-Fib Free for Five Years
I’ve been A-Fib free for five years. I still doesn’t drink coffee but enjoy chocolate and an occasional cocktail without worry.
Dr. Bhandari and the ablation was the best thing I could have done. I would like to add that the procedure is very easy. I was home the next day. I had no pain and had a short recovery time.
I have nothing but great things to say about my experience with Dr. Bhandari, his staff and Good Sam. Hospital, I live 40 miles north of L.A. and the drive was worth it.
What I wish I knew then or did differently:
• I would have had the ablation much sooner. No G.P. [family doctor] ever mentioned ablation as an option. I only heard about it from a friend!
• I had never heard of an electrophysiologist (EP), and wish I had seen one sooner.
• I would learn more about what my insurance covered and what expenses I could negotiate.
I also want to thank Steve Ryan for this wonderful web site. Good luck
P.S. For the guys: For bladder control during the catheter ablation, instead of a urinary catheter, Dr. Bhandari uses a condom. No insertion. Just sayin’.