A Cardioversion is the use of electrical current to "shock" your heart back into a normal rhythm. For this procedure you will be given medication to make you sleep. The procedure is performed by using a defibrillator. Special pads placed on your chest and used to send a brief electric shock to your heart. You will not remember the procedure. Your physician will then inform you if any further treatment is needed. You will likely go home 2-3 hours after the procedure.
Preparing For Your Procedure
- You may have clear liquids (any fluid which is transparent, such as water, apple/cranberry/grape juice, black coffee or tea) until you leave for the hospital.
- NO dairy products, including cream, or non-transparent fluids, such as orange/tomato juice.
- NO solids after midnight the night before.
- Please shower with soap and water prior to your procedure.
- Do not use creams, lotions or oils.
- Deodorant is acceptable.
- If you wear glasses or hearing aids, please wear them that day.
- Please leave all other valuable at home such as money, watches, and jewelry.
- Arrive on time and bring your insurance card (please contact your insurance providers for coverage details).
- Please make arrangements for someone 18 years or older to be with you during your stay and to drive you home.
- Depending on your procedure you may be discharged the same day or stay overnight to be discharged the following day.
Can I Take Medications?
- Please bring home medications in original bottles the morning of your procedure
- Do NOT take the day of the procedure: any Diabetic Medications
- Continue to take: Brilinta, Plavix, Effient, Aspirin, Xarelto, Eliquis, Savaysa, Coumadin or Warfarin.
What Can I Expect?
- You will be given anesthesia medications for your procedure so you will not be awake for your Cardioversion.
- You will need to be in recovery for 2-3 hours after your procedure.
- Medication may still need to be taken after Cardioversion to keep the heart rhythm normal.
- You will need someone to drive you home after your procedure.
What Will My Recovery Be Like?
During the first few days after the procedure, you may feel tenderness on your chest wall where the cardioversion pads were placed.
You may resume normal activity after you are discharged home from the hospital.
You may have an Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) taken to determine if your heart is staying in a normal rhythm.
A Holter Monitor may need to be worn at some time to check your heart rhythm after you are discharged from your procedure.
It is important to continue taking any medications for your heart rhythm even after you feel better and your heart rhythm is improved.
You will be evaluated by your cardiologist to determine if you can stop your blood thinner medications or any medications to control your heart rhythm.
If you will need a return to work slip, please ask for this prior to discharge.
If you have questions or concerns about preparing for this test, call your Cardiologist's office.