If you have an such as your doctor
may want you to have a procedure called cardioversion.
Cardioversion aims to get your abnormal heart rhythm back to
You will be given a short-acting general
anaesthetic or heavy sedation so you will be asleep throughout the
procedure. A doctor or nurse will put electrodes, stuck to large
sticky pads, on your chest. The electrodes are connected to a
defibrillator machine and will give you one or more controlled
electric shocks to your chest wall. The whole procedure usually
lasts about 10 minutes.
The defibrillator monitors your heart rhythm
throughout the procedure so the medical staff can see straight away
if the cardioversion was successful.
You will usually only need to go to hospital
for part of the day, although some people need to stay overnight.
Cardioversion doesn’t always restore normal
heart rhythm. Sometimes it’s successful to start with, but then
your abnormal heart rhythm comes back several days, weeks or even
months later. If this happens, your doctor may want to repeat the
cardioversion or they may consider another treatment for you.