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parent tried that? and with what success?

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Pulmonary ablations on a 91year old? How long is the procedure? I was the one that actually wanted an ablation on my mom thinking it would relieve her of having to get a pacemaker and having to take warfarin for the rest of her life BUT my mom was in her 80's and the doctor said, if it were my mother I'd not do it because the procedure would be too, too much for her and I listened to him as I did call doctors throughout the country about it and they said the same thing....if your mom was younger than 75 years old, I'd say go for it....
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Ooooh, that's scary. Thanks for your input! I will think, research more, and pray on it.

Barb
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Barb, my mom had an ablation at age 75 for rapid, almost out of control heartbeating. The procedure worked for her . . . BUT there apparently was a problem with threading the tubing (I am not "medically" savvy so the terminology is rudimentary) in her groin, she's diabetic. It took 6 extra surgeries, several ER runs and 6 months for it to heal. Her cardiologist is one of the best in our huge medical center. Whatever caused it, I'm telling you it was a nightmare for my mom. And for us because we had to stay with her every night for those 6 months (she had daytime help). My advice is to think long and hard on it.
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Thanks, Lilli, for that indepth response, I really appreciate it. With my mom, I believe we are reaching last ditch efforts. Before they put the pacemaker in, she had had numerous Cardioversions, which were very hard on her and she got bacterial pneumonia each time from aspirating during the procedure. So, we really didn't want to have to go that route again. Then her blood pressure started to drop and I had to call 911 as it was 54 over 35! That's when they did the pacemaker, now it never goes below 60, but she was still in atrial fibrillation, so she came back to my house and they have her on Digoxin, Pacerone and Toperol, plus have upped her Torsemide (the water pill) since she is retaining fluid. She was already on a number of medications for other things, plus her vitamins and supplements, so adding 5 more pills a day to her pill box is really complex for her; and quite frankly, even if she starts to feel better on these, I'm not sure she can handle taking them on her own, and she refuses to go to assisted living. That is why I thought the ablation sounded like a good solution as it would take her off all the BP meds, (the new 5) and she could just go back to what she was having to take before. I really like and trust her cardiologist, he really likes my Mom; but I do know that at 91 any procedure is precarious with her. She seems very depressed and is feeling so weak and tired all the time, she keeps saying what is the point. She is already on an antidepressant. I think the only way she is going to have a chance at happiness is if she can return to her "Senior Apt." and her friends. Anyway, we are going to give the meds a couple of weeks more to see how she does but if it doesn't improve, I think taking a chance may be better than living like this. I have talked with her about it and she says she is willing and likes the idea of not being on all the meds. She has a very sensitive system to medication and takes about 1/4 the dose of most people.

I will start reading about ablations and will also bring up some of the things you mentioned in your post about it. Thanks so much.

Regards.

Barb
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Wow, Barb, Ablations must be the "new thing" because they also suggested it for my mother. She is in her 80s and has had a pacemaker for several years.

Suddenly all we heard about from her cardio guys was "ablations." They made it sound like it was similar to having your teeth cleaned. I did extensive research on my own and decided, hands down, that Mom would NOT have an ablation. I thought it would be safer for them to continue to regulate her pacemaker (you really need a good technician who knows his/her stuff). Also her meds have been tweaked over the years and this has helped too.

From my novice understanding, ablations actually "kill" heart tissue in selected areas, supposedly, to free up the heart from having to work so hard.

There are three kinds: alcohol, freezing with a catheter, and RF, radio frequency. They basically do the same thing but all carry risks. Most issues are with trying to locate the affected areas that will be ablated. Also, they are less effective in patients that have frequent arrythmia. Age is also a consideration: there is risk of stroke, blood clots, etc. during the procedure.

Please investigate thoroughly before you decide to do this because once the tissue has been cauterized, it will not come back. Also, every doc under the sun has decided to get "training" in this method, but very few have extensive expertise. You will need a seasoned "electrophysiologist."

Unless this is a "last ditch effort" I, personally, would not recommend it.

Let me know what you find out....
Lilli
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