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What happens after my surgical ablation?

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After maze surgery, you will probably have to stay in the intensive care unit of your hospital. After that, you may need to stay up to five days in a regular hospital room. There the staff will monitor your heartbeat and recovery. After surgery, you may take diuretic drugs. They help control fluid in your body after the surgery. You may also take blood thinners or aspirin to prevent clots. Open-heart surgery will take the longest to recover from. It can take many weeks to heal. If you have a minimally invasive surgical ablation, you may have a quicker recovery. You should be able to leave the hospital in two to four days. You can go back to normal activity after a few weeks. For about a month after whichever surgery you have, don’t take very hot showers. Avoid soaking in a bath or whirlpool tub. Your surgical wounds may itch or feel numb or tight. You may have chest discomfort for a few weeks as your body heals. If you notice signs of infection around your wounds, such as redness, fever, swelling, or heat, call your doctor. It may take a few months for your heartbeat to be normal again after your surgical ablation. Your doctor will monitor your heartbeat to check how you’re doing.

SOURCES:

Cleveland Clinic: “Surgical Procedures for Atrial Fibrillation (MAZE).”

University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine: “A Patient's Guide to Heart Surgery,” “Robotic-Assisted MAZE Surgery.”

Society of Thoracic Surgeons: “Atrial Fibrillation Surgery - Maze Procedure.”

Cedars-Sinai Hospital: “Preparing for Maze Surgery.”

American Heart Association: “Treatment Guidelines of Atrial Fibrillation (AFib or AF).”

Reviewed by Suzanne R. Steinbaum on July 25, 2017

SOURCES:

Cleveland Clinic: “Surgical Procedures for Atrial Fibrillation (MAZE).”

University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine: “A Patient's Guide to Heart Surgery,” “Robotic-Assisted MAZE Surgery.”

Society of Thoracic Surgeons: “Atrial Fibrillation Surgery - Maze Procedure.”

Cedars-Sinai Hospital: “Preparing for Maze Surgery.”

American Heart Association: “Treatment Guidelines of Atrial Fibrillation (AFib or AF).”

Reviewed by Suzanne R. Steinbaum on July 25, 2017

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