• Have someone available to drive you home after the procedure.
  • Your doctor will discuss your medications, home-going instructions and follow-up schedule.

Will I have to stay in the hospital?

No. In most cases, you will go home the day of the procedure.

What should I expect during the recovery?

You will gradually wake up after the procedure.

Once you are fully awake, the doctor will tell you if the cardioversion successfully converted your heart rhythm to normal. Your doctor will discuss your medications, other treatment options and when to return for follow-up appointments. Be sure to ask the doctor if you should continue taking your previous medications.

You will be taken to a recovery area where you will be offered something to eat and drink. Your family may visit you in this area. An EKG may be performed. Your doctor will tell you when you can go home.

How will I feel after the procedure?

During the first few days after the procedure, you may feel tenderness on your chest wall where the cardioversion pads were placed. You will be given a tube of hydrocortisone cream to help relieve skin discomfort on your chest; apply as needed.

The doctor will tell you what over-the-counter medications you can take for pain relief. Please tell your doctor or nurse if your symptoms are prolonged or severe.

The sedation given during the procedure may make you feel drowsy; therefore you should not drive or operate machinery until the day after the procedure.

Will I be able to drive myself home?

No. For your safety, a responsible adult must drive you home. In general, you can resume driving the day after the procedure.

Managing your Condition

Cardioversion is only one part of a comprehensive treatment program. It is also important for you to take your medications, make dietary changes, live a healthy lifestyle, keep your follow-up appointments, and be an active member of your treatment team.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 05/17/2019.

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