I have Atrial Fibrillation

A totally unexpected discovery

For the last couple of months, I struggled with an on-going battle with my sinuses—stuffy nose, cough, post nasal drip, etc. It felt like an chronic cold, I suspected I had some sort of bacterial sinus infection. I went into the Dr’s office about 2-3 weeks ago for something simple, and came out with some unfortunate news.

As I talked to the doctor, he covered all grounds and asked me everything, including my previous conditions. I briefly mentioned that I had hyperthyroidism, and one time my girlfriend noticed that I had an unusual pulse. The doctor started asking more questions relating to my thyroids and heart, and then 15 minutes later I was on the bed hooked up to an EKG.

I wasn’t entirely sure what was happening, but I just went with the flow. They printed out the results and said that I had a heart condition, most likely attributed to my hyperthyroidism. In fact, he emphasized that I needed to see a cardiologist immediately to investigate my condition further. He was fairly certain that I had Atrial Fibrillation (an “unusual heart beat”). I made several inquiries like, “am I in immediate danger?”, “is this reversible?”, “what kind of treatments are there?”… but most of his answers seemed deliberately unclear.

In a nutshell, he expressed that the severity of my condition could range anywhere from minor to very serious. He also stated that I was at risk of suffering a stroke if left untreated. At this point, he had my full, undivided attention.

As a precaution, the Dr. requested that avoided the following things:

  • No Caffeine
  • No Exercise
  • No Sudafed
  • No Alcohol

And then he said, “come back in 2 weeks and we’ll follow up on your sinuses. In the mean time, make sure to stay on your hyperthyroidism medicine”. Since then, health has been my number 1 priority. I am taking all my pills religiously.

The bad news

When I went to the cardiologist, he did some more tests including an echocardiogram. The Dr confirmed that I had Atrial Fibrillation, however, it was unlikely for me to experience a stroke since I’m still relatively young. Treatment can range anywhere from medication all the way to electroshock (that’s where they would sedate me and shock my heart back into a normal rhythm).

Before the Dr begins treatment, he wanted to see all the data from my heart monitor. He said he would examine all points of data to ensure his recommended treatment would lead me to a safe path towards recovery.

The good news

According to the Dr, I’m in no immediate danger. As long as I avoid the stuff I bulleted above, I should be fine. The other part of the good news is that it should be reversible in time. They mentioned that a part of my heart has been enlarged because of overuse, but it shouldn’t affect me in the long run. Right now, my priority is to get my thyroids under control, followed by reversing the affects of my heart condition.

Next steps

While I usually have a cool demeanor, I’ll have to admit that I’m moderately stressed. As I mentioned, health is my #1 priority right. I just have to take one day at a time.

Anyway, I figured I’d let you guys know what’s going on. It’s challenging to keep up with everyone these days—so if you’re reading this, thank you for all the support. Don’t be too worried… I am doing everything within my power to get this under control. I’ll keep you guys posted every step of the way.

To learn more about Atrial Fibrillation, read this.

4 thoughts on “I have Atrial Fibrillation

  1. Oh man. We (me and Alex) wish you good health, Jeff. Hope it reverses soon! And I’ll try to bug you to take your meds as much as I can.

  2. hey appy, thanks for dropping a line. yeh, i’m crossing my fingers that it’s fully reversible. i appreciate the support.

    tell alex i said hello! ^_^ we’ll have to hang out sometime soon. i want to check out your new apartment.

  3. Heya! names Mike. We’ve met, like, twice. Did some work for you guys during the Allison Tepley days and ran into you at a Nova UX event. Randomly read your blog once in a while and just thought I’d say, hey, be well because there are many more pixels to make.

  4. Pingback: Apple Watch Series 4 | jeffé

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