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Ablation helps flutter, too.

Q: I had ablation of the atrioventricular (AV) node in 2001 that apparently took care of my atrial fibrillation but left me with heart flutter. When I relax in my recliner for a short period of rime, I get short of breath and feel very much as I did with atrial fibrillation. When I sit on the chair edge or get up and walk, the feeling goes away. Is there any cure for heart flutter?

Zipes: I am not certain about what is causing your symptoms. My first thought is that patients with heart failure are often more short of breath lying down than sitting or standing. A check by your cardiologist would resolve that issue. I assume that by "heart flutter" you mean atrial flutter, not just a fluttering feeling in your chest. If you had successful ablation of the AV node, then the atria (top portion of your heart) should not be conducting to the ventricles (bottom chambers), whether you have atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter. If there is conduction, then the atrial flutter can be ablated also. If my comments do not answer your questions, find out more about your condition from your doctor and write in again.

Douglas P. Zipes, M.D. Internationally acclaimed cardiologist, professor, author, and inventor is an authority on pacing and electrophysiology (rhythms of the heart).

Dr. Zipes will answer your questions about heart health. Please send questions to: Dr. Douglas Zipes, SatEvePost, 1100 Waterway Blvd., Indianapolis, IN 46202 or email drzipes@satevepost.org.
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Title Annotation:HEART HEALTH
Author:Zipes, Douglas P.
Publication:Saturday Evening Post
Date:Mar 1, 2009
Words:252
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