My story is long and sad. I had a-fib for years. At the outset, it was pretty mild, but went to a cardiologist. She assured me that if you have to have a heart problem, this was the least worst. She did put me on warfarin which still take. It is a bit of a pain as have to get blood test every month to be sure and keep it at the right dose. Various foods can affect the level.
Anyhoo, after years of pretty much ignoring it, it began to get pretty bad. Could really feel my chest heaving about, and sort of shortness-of-breath feeling. It usually came in early evening, and would last for five or ten minutes.
Then it began to get more severe, and lasted longer. I realized the two or three days a week I had a glass of red wine before dinner, definitely triggered about in the evening, so stopped that. Later, found white wine or any alcohol would start the thing. So, alas, stopped drinking and it helped.
Then I began to have bouts that kept going through the night, lasting eight to ten hours. When they stopped, it left me pretty drained and tired. Doc has me stop several foods that seem to trigger the thing (all good stuff like coffee, chocolate, yogurt, bananas, etc). Didn’t really seem to help much.
I then had a bout lasting 18 hours, that began to worry me. Doc had me try a med, which did not help, and then I had another 18-hour episode. By morning I was also having tachycardia, so called 911, and when the medics got here, it was racing at around 180. Rushed me to the ER and was admitted. My cardiologist showed up, and scheduled me for some tests. I got up around 11 PM to go to the john, and the next thing I knew, six nurses were picking me up from the floor, with blood dripping from my forehead where I struck the floor, after my heart dropped to 30, and then stopped for 24 seconds! They rushed me to ICU where I had a couple more episodes and they shot me full of something that eventually calmed it down.
Next morning, they put in a pacemaker. More tests to see if I was in good enough shape to withstand a very strong drug. I was, and started on it, and had all sorts of nasty side effects, and it did not seem to stop the a-fib which was then having almost every night.
A while later, had another severe bout and was again rushed to the ER, admitted, and had more tests. Tried another drug, similar problem.
They discussed ablation with me, where an area of the heart that controls the rhythm is scratched up to stop this. I opted to wait, and then a while later, they started me on a new med called Rythmol. This is miracle, as far as I am concerned, as even with pacemaker exams, I have now gone more than 18 months without a single episode.
I do know a few people who have had the ablation, and apparently it works quite well, just FYI.
So, I am one of the unlucky ones that has pretty severe problems, but it is rather uncommon as far as I can tell. In any case, just keep track of what happens and when, and continue to see you cardiologist as often as directed, and with any luck, it will be at the most, only a mild annoyance.