Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is a disorder of the heart’s rhythm, where the heart’s atria suffer from “fibrillation” (rapid, uncontrolled beats). The other main type is “ventricular fibrillation”, which is more serious. Symptoms of atrial fibrillation may include irregular heartbeat, palpitations, tiredness, fatigue, weakness, and shortness of breath. Prognosis ...

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Introduction: Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial fibrillation, often called AFib or AF, is the most common type of heart arrhythmia. An arrhythmia is when the heart beats too slowly, too fast, or in an irregular way. When a person has AFib, the normal beating in ...1

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Symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation

People who have AF may not feel symptoms. However, even when AF isn't noticed, it can increase the risk of stroke. In some people, AF can cause chest pain or heart failure, especially if the heart rhythm is very rapid ...2

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Complications of Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial Fibrillation Complications: AF has two major complications—stroke and heart failure. Stroke During AF, the heart's upper chambers, the atria, don't pump all of their blood to the ventricles. Some blood pools in the atria. When this happens, a ...3

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Causes of Atrial Fibrillation

AF occurs if rapid, disorganized electrical signals cause the heart's two upper chambers—called the atria (AY-tree-uh)—to fibrillate. The term "fibrillate" means to contract very fast and irregularly. In AF, blood pools in the atria. It isn't ...4

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Causes List for Atrial Fibrillation

Some possible causes of Atrial Fibrillation or similar disorders may include:5

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Types of Atrial Fibrillation

AF may be brief, with symptoms that come and go and end on their own. Or, the condition may be ongoing and require treatment. Sometimes AF is permanent, and medicines or other treatments can't restore a normal heart rhythm. Source ...6

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Diagnosis of Atrial Fibrillation

How Is Atrial Fibrillation Diagnosed? Atrial fibrillation (AF) is diagnosed based on your medical and family histories, a physical exam, and the results from tests and procedures. Sometimes AF doesn't cause signs or symptoms. Thus, it may be found during ...7

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Genetics of Atrial Fibrillation

Genetic factors also may play a role in causing AF. However, their role isn't fully known. ...Source: NHLBI (NIH)8 ...

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Risk Factors for Atrial Fibrillation

Who Is at Risk for Atrial Fibrillation? The risk of AF increases as you age. This is mostly because your risk for heart disease and other conditions that can cause AF also increases as you age. However, about half of ...9

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Misdiagnosis: Atrial Fibrillation

Undiagnosed Atrial Fibrillation. Sometimes the symptoms of AF are quite mild, and it remains undiagnosed. Hidden Causes. Atrial fibrillation can indicate a variety of hidden causes. Sometimes no cause can be found. Some of the causes on the differential diagnosis ...

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Treatments: Atrial Fibrillation

How Is Atrial Fibrillation Treated? Treatment for atrial fibrillation (AF) depends on how often you have symptoms, how severe they are, and whether you already have heart disease. General treatment options include medicines, medical procedures, and lifestyle changes. Goals of ...10

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Prevention of Atrial Fibrillation

How Can Atrial Fibrillation Be Prevented? Following a healthy lifestyle and taking steps to lower your risk for heart disease may help you prevent atrial fibrillation (AF). These steps include:

  • Following a heart healthy diet that's low in saturated fat ...
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Research for Atrial Fibrillation

What research is being done? The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) is the leading Federal agency directing and funding research relevant to AF and stroke prevention. The NINDS conducts basic and clinical research in its laboratories and ...11

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Names and Terminology

Other Names for Atrial Fibrillation

Source: NHLBI (NIH)12 ...

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  1. Source: CDC DHDSP: dhdsp/ data_statistics/ fact_sheets/ fs_atrial_fibrillation.htm
  2. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af
  3. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af/ signs
  4. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af
  5. Source: Algorithmically Generated List
  6. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af
  7. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af/ diagnosis
  8. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af/ atrisk
  9. ibid.
  10. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af/ treatment
  11. Source: NINDS (NIH): disorders/ atrial_fibrillation_and_stroke/ atrial_fibrillation_and_stroke.htm
  12. Source: NHLBI (NIH): health/ health-topics/ topics/ af/ names

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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.