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Doctor insights on: Atrial Fibrillation

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Dr. John Garner
1,831 doctors shared insights

Atrial Fibrillation (Overview)

A heart condition, in which the electrical activity of the heart is abnormal. This abnormal electrical signal causes the heart muscle to contract when it is not supposed to and thus blood is not effectively pumped out.


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What are the tests for atrial fibrillation?

What are the tests for atrial fibrillation?

Electrocardiogram: If the atrial fibrillation is ongoing then an electrocardiogram will show it. If it only occurs from time to time, then there are different types of monitors that a patient can use at home to record the heart rhythm; this is another type of electrocardiogram sometimes referred to as an event recorder. ...Read more

Dr. John Garner
1,831 doctors shared insights

Atrial Fibrillation (Overview)

A heart condition, in which the electrical activity of the heart is abnormal. This abnormal electrical signal causes the heart muscle to contract when it is not supposed to and thus blood is not effectively pumped out.


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What are the treatments for atrial fibrillation?

What are the treatments for atrial fibrillation?

It Varies.: The most important treatment is stroke prevention, which is usually done by medications (aspirin or warfarin). Sometimes rate control medications are used, like metoprolol. If the af is severe enough, stronger anti-arrhythmic medications are used, like propafenone. If these do not work, catheter ablation may be recommended. Pacemaker and av-node ablation may be used as a last resort. ...Read more

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What are the common symptoms of atrial fibrillation?

What are the common symptoms of atrial fibrillation?

Sometimes none: Highly variable: some people are entirely unaware. Others feel their heart beating irregularly or "fluttering" & may notice rapid heart rate. Commonly people notice fatigue and their exercise capacity is mildly reduced. Sedentary people usually don't notice any change. Younger people & folks with their 1st bout tend to be more aware. Frequent bouts and older people are less likely to notice. ...Read more

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Who is at risk for atrial fibrillation?

Read...: As per epocrates: CAD (coronary disease) hypertension, heart failure, valvular disease, pericardial and pleural diseases, diabetes, thyroid disorders, disorders of the lung, and advanced age are known risk factors for the development of acute af. However, af may occur in the absence of any underlying cardiac or noncardiac diseases, for example, as a result of heavy alcohol intake. ...Read more

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How does atrial fibrillation with ventricular standstill differ from fine v-fib?

How does atrial fibrillation with ventricular standstill differ from fine v-fib?

AF vs vf: Good question, they could look alike on ECG. Both would also result in cardiac arrest. As no perfusion would result, one would expect AF waves to be less visible than VF very quickly. If arrest had been present for say more than 30sec. , VF would be more likely as the AF waves should likely not be visible. ...Read more

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What is atrial fibrillation a symptom of?

What is atrial fibrillation a symptom of?

It depends: Atrial fibrillation is an irregular rhythm in which the atria beat at nearly 400 beats/min. It is common in older patients as a reflection of aging of the conduction system. In younger patients it can be caused by alcohol and drug abuse. It can also occur when the heart dilates as in congestive heart failure. The abnormal contractions put patients at risk for blood clots which may cause strokes. ...Read more

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What are the common symptoms of atrial fibrillation?

Sometimes none: Highly variable: some people are entirely unaware. Others feel their heart beating irregularly or "fluttering" & may notice rapid heart rate. Commonly people notice fatigue and their exercise capacity is mildly reduced. Sedentary people usually don't notice any change. Younger people & folks with their 1st bout tend to be more aware. Frequent bouts and older people are less likely to notice. ...Read more

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How is atrial fibrillation treated?

How is atrial fibrillation treated?

Medications: There are a variety of medications which can either control the heart rate or convert the rhythm back to normal. Sometimes cardioversion is used to correct the heart rhythm. Also in some cases ablation can be done which will correct the abnormal rhythm. ...Read more

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Funny how a diagnosis doesn't mean much till you have it. What is atrial fibrillation?

Funny how a diagnosis doesn't mean much till you have it. What is atrial fibrillation?

Electrical chaos: The electrical impulses in the upper chambers of your heart (mostly originating from the left side) are completely chaotic leading to a quivering motion of these chambers instead of their typical, coordinated pumping function. The lower chambers beat erratically, as the electrical impulses bombard them in a haphazard way. See a cardiologist or an elelctrophysiologist. ...Read more

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15 yrs with hypothyroidism taking 200mcg test 3 days ago came back 8.0 reduce to 125mcg reason of test ER with atrial fibrillation this the reason?

15 yrs with hypothyroidism  taking 200mcg test 3 days ago came back 8.0 reduce to 125mcg reason of test  ER with atrial fibrillation this the reason?

Incomplete: Your question is incomplete. We don't know what test came back 8.0, what drug you're taking, etc. Let's assume you're asking if the er reduced your levothyroxine to 125mcg with a TSH of 8.0 for atrial fibrillation. That would make some sense from a fib perspective, but the TSH of 8.0 would mean your body needs more levothyroxine, not less, so the picture still isn't clear from your question. ...Read more

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What are the tests for atrial fibrillation?

Electrocardiogram: If the atrial fibrillation is ongoing then an electrocardiogram will show it. If it only occurs from time to time, then there are different types of monitors that a patient can use at home to record the heart rhythm; this is another type of electrocardiogram sometimes referred to as an event recorder. ...Read more

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Can someone take viagra (sildenafil) if you have atrial fibrillation?

Can someone take viagra (sildenafil) if you have atrial fibrillation?

Yes: Unless you're taking nitrates for some other condition, viagra should be fine. I recommend my patients avoid Levitra (vardenafil) (tadalafil) because it can interact with certain rhythm drugs many docs use for afib. Viagra and Cialis don't have this effect. Nobody's ever died from the interaction but better to avoid the issue. While you're at it, look into the differences in cost and action of viagra v cialis. ...Read more

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What can cause atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation: Atrial fibrillation , or afib, is a very common rhythm disturbance, the most common in this country. It is most often associated with hypertension, but can also be associated with valvular disease specifically mitral valve disease. It can be treated with either rate control or converting back to the normal sinus rhythm. Patient are often placed on blood thinners to prevent complications. ...Read more

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I had PVCs on my 48hr heart monitor, but nothing from the atrium. Does that mean no atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fib: The monitor did not pick up any evidence of atrial fibrillation during the 48 hour period you wore it. It is still possible that you could have had episodes of atrial fibrillation at other times, but from the information at hand there is no proof of that. ...Read more

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Did you know that chinese herbs can easily treat atrial fibrillation?

Did you know that chinese herbs can easily treat atrial fibrillation?

Who knows: Herbs are good for many illnesses and ailments, i'm sure. However, our profession is based on scientific data, and as long as there are no prospective, double blind, placebo controlled trials proving benefit, you are asking us to give you bottled water for a cancerous tumor because it's been proven to make river rocks get smaller... ...Read more

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What is the most recommended treatment for atrial fibrillation?

What is the most recommended treatment for atrial fibrillation?

Anticoag + rate cont: Anticoagulation and rate control with PO meds. ...Read more

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What are the treatments for atrial fibrillation?

It Varies.: The most important treatment is stroke prevention, which is usually done by medications (aspirin or warfarin). Sometimes rate control medications are used, like metoprolol. If the af is severe enough, stronger anti-arrhythmic medications are used, like propafenone. If these do not work, catheter ablation may be recommended. Pacemaker and av-node ablation may be used as a last resort. ...Read more

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Has anyone successfully cured atrial fibrillation?

Has anyone successfully cured atrial fibrillation?

Define cured: Atrial fibrillation is a degenerative disease of the upper chamber which results in deposition of microscopic amounts of scar tissue, a generally irreversible process. However, certain procedures such as a surgical maze or catheter ablation can prevent patients from developing the rhythm of atrial fibrillation, or, barring that, the symptoms from the arrhythmia with up to ~70% success. ...Read more

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Are there any steps I can take to prevent mild atrial fibrillation from getting worse?

Stay or get healthy: There are many things that may worsen atrial fibrillation. These include excessive alcohol use, caffeine and being overweight. If any of these apply to you, try to improve them. You should also work with your doctor to ensure you don't have an underlying heart valve problem, coronary artery disease or a thyroid disorder that is causing atrial fibrillation. ...Read more

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What are drug treatments for atrial fibrillation?

What are drug treatments for atrial fibrillation?

See below: All patients with atrial fibrillation should be placed on anticoagulants to decrease the risk of blood clots from the atrium. Drugs like warfarin or the newer drugs such as 10a inhibitors are used. Drugs such as beta blockers or calcium channel blockers are used to control the heart rate. Other drugs such as amiodarone or sotalol are used to try to convert atrial fibrillation back to sinus rhythm. ...Read more

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What do you suggest if I have atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat) - can I still go on the pill?

Afib/pill: You should have a detailed discussion with your doctor about the implications of atrial fibrillation for you. There is no single answer to this question and it needs to be specific to the individual and their situation. ...Read more

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Does atrial fibrillation get worse as one gets older?

Worsening AF: Af is usually a progressive issue. The progression varies with each person - months, years, decades. It usually increases in frequency or duration over time but there is no defined interval in any specific person. Af causes changes in the electrical properties of the atrium to increase the chances for more af. Therapy with drugs or ablation may decrease the chances of progression. Talk to you md. ...Read more

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What causes atrial fibrillation? Is stress the main cause of atrial fibrillation, and is it genetic?

What causes atrial fibrillation? Is stress the main cause of atrial fibrillation, and is it genetic?

Not Really: The main cause in ~90% of cases from young persons like you is extra heartbeats starting in structures called the pulmonary veins. Sometimes that's all it is; more often than not though, the top chambers (atria) also have dilation and scar tissue which helps sustain the fib once it starts. Only a small portion of afib is clearly known to be genetic. Stress triggers extra htbeats -?-> fib. ...Read more

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Who is at risk for atrial fibrillation?

Read...: As per epocrates: CAD (coronary disease) hypertension, heart failure, valvular disease, pericardial and pleural diseases, diabetes, thyroid disorders, disorders of the lung, and advanced age are known risk factors for the development of acute af. However, af may occur in the absence of any underlying cardiac or noncardiac diseases, for example, as a result of heavy alcohol intake. ...Read more

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How does someone prevent atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fib: May not be able to prevent this arrhythmia. But some people can get episodes after drinking alcohol. ...Read more

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What is atrial fibrillation?

Irregular rhythm: Af is an irregular heart rhythm caused by uncoordinated electrical activity in the atria, or top chambers of the heart. Sometimes it is fast, other times it isn't. ...Read more

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What is atrial fibrillation?

What is atrial fibrillation?

Arrhythmias: Atrial fibrillation (afib) is the most common sustained rhythm abnormality. It's characterized by an irregular heart rate. The upper chambers of the heart (atrium) do not beat but quiver. Many people don't notice it. But many do. It can lead to strokes in some patients so blood thinners are important. It can be treated with medications, ablation thru iv's in the groin or surgery. See a cardiologis. ...Read more

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Is atrial fibrillation inherited?

Sometimes: There is a gene that makes the tendency to get it more likely, but most a fib is due to environmental and aquired factors such as age, valvular heart disease and alcohol. ...Read more

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Can atrial fibrillation cause ed?

Can atrial fibrillation cause ed?

No: Afib cannot directly cause ed. Medicines used to treat afib can impair erections and conditions associated with afib such as heart failure, coronary disease also can cause ed. ...Read more

Fibrillation (Definition)

Fibrillation is the rapid, irregular, and unsynchronized contraction of muscle fibers. An important occurrence is with ...Read more