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What are the side effects of cardiac ablation?

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Quick Answer

Possible side effects of cardiac ablation include heart puncture, heart valve damage, stroke or heart attack, kidney damage, and bleeding, notes Mayo Clinic. Other effects include damage to the blood vessels, damage to the electrical system of the heart, blood clotting and narrowing of veins. People suffering from kidney disease or diabetes have higher chances of experiencing these side effects.

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Cardiac ablation is a treatment for irregular heart rhythms, explains MedlinePlus. Doctors perform it to scar the areas involved in irregular heart rhythms, preventing the movement of the rhythms in the heart. It involves the insertion of a catheter into the heart to allow the transfer of energy to the areas that cause the abnormal rhythms, reports the Cleveland Clinic. Doctors can also use this procedure to separate the electrical pathway between ventricles and atria in the heart.

Informing the doctor about current medications is necessary before the procedure, according to MedlinePlus. Cigarette users should stop smoking before the procedure. Patients suffering from fever, cold, flu or a herpes breakout should inform the doctor. A patient is likely not to eat or drink anything on the day of the procedure. After the procedure, the doctor puts pressure on the point of the catheter's insertion to prevent bleeding. A patient may experience an achy feeling in the chest, fatigue and skipped heartbeats two to three days following the procedure.

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