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newly diagnosed chf

My boyfriend was diagnosed with atrial fibrillation 5 years ago. He is 58 years old now. Three weeks ago he suffered a stroke after becoming lax on his coumdin medication. He has no lasting effects from his stroke. During his hospital stay he had been experiencing serious bouts of anxiety which I have read is pretty common. This past Thursday he was hospitilized with swelling in his legs, stomach and hands. He hasalso been extremely nauseous. I am unable to get info from his doctors as I am not a relative and I am currently 3000 miles away from him. He is in California and I am in Massachusetts. From what I read this could be due to congestive heart failure.
My question is...last Friday , the day after he was admitted, he sounded like a new man. He felt fantastic and he was hungry and eating for the first time in days and sleeping. He was started on Ativan for his anxiety and he was getting some rest. For the past couple of days he sounds out of it and confused and complains of feeling anxious all the time. Please help me understand some of this and what to expect. It seems the Doctors are going to do a Cardioversion in the next couple of weeks. What is this and will it help??
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230125 tn?1193365857
Atrial fibrillation alone does not usually cause swelling in the hands, feet, and abdomen.  The question you need to ask the doctor is does he have heart failure and if he doesn't what is causing the swelling.  Without knowing the results of his echo or blood tests, I can't tell you if he has heart failure.

Anxiety can is caused by atrial fibrillation and sometimes people that are anxious at baseline become more anxious with atrial fibrillation.  Medications like ativan can work for the short term but are not good long term answers because ativan can be quite addictive.  Too much ativan can make you very sleepy -- I wonder if that is why he feels out of it.

A cardioversion is an electrical shock given while the patient is sedated to convert them from atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm.  If he has heart failure, this will help some people improve their heart function and it helps people with symptoms from atrial fibrillation improve as well.

You boyfriend can give the doctors permission to let them talk to you.  That will probably best serve you so you can get some answers.

I hope this helps.
Helpful - 2
88793 tn?1290227177
Thanks very much.  I want one on my next blood test.
Helpful - 0
162069 tn?1224677411
a good blood test for heart failure is BNP      brain natriuretic peptide    make sure whomever runs it doesn't mistake it for BMP    basic metabolic profile
Helpful - 0
88793 tn?1290227177
Does anyone here know what kind of blood tests will tell is heart failure or not?
Helpful - 0

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