Things have settled down recently. Since the ablations last year, I have had a few periods of AF, other arrhythmias or ectopics; for some of these there has been a possible trigger.
After the mini-maze on 7th April I had a wobbly heartbeat for a few days, but have largely been in sinus rhythm ever since.
I had one day of AF after a very stressful work day on 16th May, but the cardiologist was unconcerned.
I noticed an excessive amount of ectopics on 15-16th August for no apparent reason, again the cardiologist was happy with this.
I experienced a lot of ectopics after coming off the Bisoprolol in the middle of November, which carried through on to 24th December. I had one alcoholic drink (1½ units) on two occasions 12th and 17th December; these seemed to have no effect. In fact I had several drinks on 21st December and the ectopics disappeared completely. I was so pleased with this, I got a little carried away on New Year’s Eve, and woke up to a Kardia reading of possible AF, which returned to sinus rhythm with a few ectopics later in the morning. I reduced my intake to almost nothing and by the middle of January I was experiencing no ectopics.
On 15th April, I had a Kardia reading of possible AF; this was while in the hospital visiting my very sick mother, so stress possibly a factor again. I actually thought the trace looked more like ectopics, there was a visible p-wave and overall the trace was relatively consistent in rate. There were similar one-off traces over the next few days.
My heart then behaved itself until the end of May, surprisingly including the period of the death of my mother. Over the second bank holiday weekend in May, I had drunk a little over the limit and may have been rewarded for this with some very strange readings, which settled down fairly quickly. Similar readings showing quite a lot of baseline noise continued until 10th June. I also had very bad indigestion through this period, so it was possibly due to a virus. Since then things have been fine. And my resting pulse has been returning towards something normal, 63 last night.
Throughout this period I have continued cycling steadily, I don’t believe that exercise has had any causality in my arrhythmic events. I am starting to lose the weight I put on over the last two years, but still have another kilo to lose to get to a BMI below 25 (5Kg to get to full fitness; the weight I was in 2015).
There isn’t a clear correlation of my experience of ectopics, arrhythmias and noisy ECG traces with alcohol consumption, stress, exercise or anything else. I have given up looking for triggers or patterns and have decided to just continue to live in relative moderation. Following alcohol guidance, changing work patterns to avoid stress and maintaining exercise at predominantly at zone 1-2, with occasional peaks to the top of zone 3 (HR 163) I am much slower than previously, but getting faster within these parameters as I return to fitness, but I am still cautious as I don’t want to risk reverting back to AF.