I just got home from having a catheter ablation of my heart.
I probably would’ve been more scared before hand if I knew what it was going to be like. They put wires through my femoral artery, and then one through my shoulder, and when they thread a wire from your bikini line to your heart it feels like that is exactly what’s happening. Kind of an uncomfortable pressure, except that understates it. I don’t know. It feels like exactly how you would imagine it to feel. Really weird.
Then they poke around stimulating different areas of the heart so that they can find what part is responsible for the arrhythmia. That wasn’t fun and I had no sedation or anti-anxiety meds. I wanted to try and remember what he was saying because it sounded like dialogue off of ER, like “let’s shock with 500 and then go down by 20s. Again.” Of course when it was ‘successful’, it sent my heart into arrythmia which is uncomfortable in its own way.
Then he started to ablate, but he hadn’t told me he was switching from the exploratory part to the actual procedure. It hurts like a mother, and I was startled so I yelled “Ow! Jesus!” which was pretty funny. HE apologized for it hurting me, but all I could think is that he was lucky that I didn’t let fly with some worse swear words. Hahaha.
I had my head turned to the right, away from my shoulder with the port in it, to the wall that had a clock. The whole thing took more than an hour in the OR and it felt like watching the clock was making it feel even longer than it already was. So I turned my head and saw that my shoulder was all bloody and NOPE to that, don’t like blood, I’ll take the view of the clock!
When they finished they took me back, where I had to lay flat for two hours because of the puncture in the artery that they need to clot. At the end of two hours I was still bleeding so I had to lay there even longer. It isn’t like laying in bed at home – you really can’t use your phone or tablet comfortably without your head being propped up. It was boring but OK, except that I hadn’t had anything to eat or drink since midnight the day before so I was hungry and thirsty and wanted to go pee.
At 5:20 I was finally out of there and home to the couch watching TV. Yay!