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Sample records for asymptomatic atrial fibrillation

  1. Atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Lip, Gregory Y H; Fauchier, Laurent; Freedman, Saul B; Van Gelder, Isabelle; Natale, Andrea; Gianni, Carola; Nattel, Stanley; Potpara, Tatjana; Rienstra, Michiel; Tse, Hung-Fat; Lane, Deirdre A

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac rhythm disorder, and increases in prevalence with increasing age and the number of cardiovascular comorbidities. AF is characterized by a rapid and irregular heartbeat that can be asymptomatic or lead to symptoms such as palpitations, dyspnoea and dizziness. The condition can also be associated with serious complications, including an increased risk of stroke. Important recent developments in the clinical epidemiology and management of AF have informed our approach to this arrhythmia. This Primer provides a comprehensive overview of AF, including its epidemiology, mechanisms and pathophysiology, diagnosis, screening, prevention and management. Management strategies, including stroke prevention, rate control and rhythm control, are considered. We also address quality of life issues and provide an outlook on future developments and ongoing clinical trials in managing this common arrhythmia. PMID:27159789

  2. Atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Bang, Casper N

    2013-10-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common complication after myocardial infarction (MI) and new-onset AF has been demonstrated to be associated with adverse outcome and a large excess risk of death in both MI and aortic stenosis (AS) patients. Prevention of new-onset AF is therefore a potential therapeutic target in AS and MI patients. Lipid-lowering drugs, particularly statins, have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that may prevent AF. Accordingly, statins are recommended as a class IIa recommendation for prevention of new-onset AF after coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). However, this preventive effect has not been investigated on new-onset AF in asymptomatic patients with AS or a large scale first-time MI patient sample and data in patients not undergoing invasive cardiac interventions are limited. This PhD thesis was conducted at the Heart Centre, Rigshospitalet, Denmark, with the aim to investigate the three aforementioned questions and to add to the existing evidence of AF prevention with statins. This was done using three different settings: 1) a randomized patients sample of 1,873 from the Simvastatin and Ezetimibe in Aortic Stenosis (SEAS) study, 2) a register patient sample of 97,499 with first-time MI, and 3) all published studies until beginning of June 2011 examining statin treatment on new-onset and recurrent AF in patients not undergoing cardiac surgery. This thesis revealed that statins did not lower the incidence or the time to new-onset AF in patients with asymptomatic AS. However, statin treatment showed an independently preventive effect on new-onset AF, including type-dependent effect and a trend to dosage-dependent effect. In addition, this thesis showed that good compliance to statin treatment was important to prevent new-onset AF. Finally, the meta-analysis in this PhD thesis showed a preventive effect in the observational studies although this effect was absent in the randomized controlled trials. Based on this PhD thesis

  3. Atrial Fibrillation and Stroke

    MedlinePlus

    ... Find People About NINDS NINDS Atrial Fibrillation and Stroke Information Page Table of Contents (click to jump ... done? Clinical Trials What is Atrial Fibrillation and Stroke? Atrial fibrillation (AF) describes the rapid, irregular beating ...

  4. Living with Atrial Fibrillation

    MedlinePlus

    ... Topics » Atrial Fibrillation » Living With Atrial Fibrillation Explore Atrial Fibrillation What Is... Types Other Names Causes Who Is at Risk Signs & Symptoms Diagnosis Treatments Prevention Living With Clinical Trials Links Related Topics Arrhythmia ...

  5. Atrial fibrillation or flutter

    MedlinePlus

    ... causes of atrial fibrillation include: Alcohol use (especially binge drinking) Coronary artery disease Heart attack or heart ... conditions that cause atrial fibrillation and flutter. Avoid binge drinking.

  6. Atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Munger, Thomas M.; Wu, Li-Qun; Shen, Win K.

    2014-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common arrhythmia affecting patients today. Disease prevalence is increasing at an alarming rate worldwide, and is associated with often catastrophic and costly consequences, including heart failure, syncope, dementia, and stroke. Therapies including anticoagulants, anti-arrhythmic medications, devices, and non-pharmacologic procedures in the last 30 years have improved patients' functionality with the disease. Nonetheless, it remains imperative that further research into AF epidemiology, genetics, detection, and treatments continues to push forward rapidly as the worldwide population ages dramatically over the next 20 years. PMID:24474959

  7. [Atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Colín Lizalde, L J

    2001-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia. AF has now been exhaustively studied: more is known about its mechanism and research is moving towards new forms of treatment. For chronic AF, basically the control of ventricular rate and the brain protection are the main issues. It is well known that with the identification of high risk group for embolism, oral anticoagulation should be administered. Ventricular rate control can be achieved by using betablockers or calcium channel blockers, unless these are contraindicated for the elderly. Oral anticoagulation prevents the stroke. The main mechanism of AF is the re-entry of multiple wavelets, but now it is more frequently found on patients with focal AF. Therapies are employed to bring the patient to a sinusal rhythm as soon as possible with antiarryhthmics or electric cardioversion externally or internally. The internal procedure includes 1 to 15 J and the success rate is of 91% vs 67% in relation to the external one. The introduction of the catheter ablation has opened new frontiers for the treatment of AF, first as the ablate-and-pace technique and now trying to mimic the maze procedure or with the ablation of the focal tachycardia. The stimulation for prevention of AF under research, as well as the implantable dysfibrillation for selected patients. On going studies will show the possible benefit of this type of benefits. PMID:11565343

  8. Atrial Fibrillation in Children

    MedlinePlus

    ... Pressure High Blood Pressure Tools & Resources Stroke More Atrial Fibrillation in Children Updated:Jul 18,2016 Does your ... content was last reviewed on 04/16/14. Atrial Fibrillation • Introduction • What is Atrial Fibrillation? • Why AFib Matters • ...

  9. Atrial Fibrillation

    MedlinePlus

    ... cause the atria to fibrillate. The faulty signals flood the AV node with electrical impulses. As a ... people who have permanent AF, treatment can help control symptoms and prevent complications. Treatment may include medicines, ...

  10. Atrial Fibrillation Medications

    MedlinePlus

    ... think you are pregnant If you notice red, dark brown or black urine or stools If you ... Fibrillation • Introduction • What is Atrial Fibrillation? • Why AFib Matters • Understand your Risk for AFib Children • Symptoms of ...

  11. Impact of esophageal temperature monitoring guided atrial fibrillation ablation on preventing asymptomatic excessive transmural injury

    PubMed Central

    Kiuchi, Kunihiko; Okajima, Katsunori; Shimane, Akira; Kanda, Gaku; Yokoi, Kiminobu; Teranishi, Jin; Aoki, Kousuke; Chimura, Misato; Toba, Takayoshi; Oishi, Shogo; Sawada, Takahiro; Tsukishiro, Yasue; Onishi, Tetsuari; Kobayashi, Seiichi; Taniguchi, Yasuyo; Yamada, Shinichiro; Yasaka, Yoshinori; Kawai, Hiroya; Yoshida, Akihiro; Fukuzawa, Koji; Itoh, Mitsuaki; Imamura, Kimitake; Fujiwara, Ryudo; Suzuki, Atsushi; Nakanishi, Tomoyuki; Yamashita, Soichiro; Hirata, Ken-ichi; Tada, Hiroshi; Yamasaki, Hiro; Naruse, Yoshihisa; Igarashi, Miyako; Aonuma, Kazutaka

    2015-01-01

    Background Even with the use of a reduced energy setting (20–25 W), excessive transmural injury (ETI) following catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF) is reported to develop in 10% of patients. However, the incidence of ETI depends on the pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) method and its esophageal temperature monitor setting. Data comparing the incidence of ETI following AF ablation with and without esophageal temperature monitoring (ETM) are still lacking. Methods This study was comprised of 160 patients with AF (54% paroxysmal, mean: 24.0±2.9 kg/m2). Eighty patients underwent ablation accompanied by ETM. The primary endpoint was defined as the occurrence of ETI assessed by endoscopy within 5 d after the AF ablation. The secondary endpoint was defined as AF recurrence after a single procedure. If the esophageal temperature probe registered >39 °C, the radiofrequency (RF) application was stopped immediately. RF applications could be performed in a point-by-point manner for a maximum of 20 s and 20 W. ETI was defined as any injury that resulted from AF ablation, including esophageal injury or periesophageal nerve injury (peri-ENI). Results The incidence of esophageal injury was significantly lower in patients whose AF ablation included ETM compared with patients without ETM (0 [0%] vs. 6 [7.5%], p=0.028), but not the incidence of peri-ENI (2 [2.5%] vs. 3 [3.8%], p=1.0). AF recurrence 12 months after the procedure was similar between the groups (20 [25%] in the ETM group vs. 19 [24%] in the non-ETM group, p=1.00). Conclusions Catheter ablation using ETM may reduce the incidence of esophageal injury without increasing the incidence of AF recurrence but not the incidence of peri-ENI. PMID:26949429

  12. Atrial fibrillation ablation.

    PubMed

    Pappone, Carlo; Santinelli, Vincenzo

    2012-06-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the commonest cardiac arrhythmia, with significant morbidity related to symptoms, heart failure, and thromboembolism, which is associated with excess mortality. Over the past 10 years, many centers worldwide have reported high success rates and few complications after a single ablation procedure in patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. Recent studies indicate a short-term and long-term superiority of catheter ablation as compared with conventional antiarrhythmic drug therapy in terms of arrhythmia recurrence, quality of life, and arrhythmia progression. As a result, catheter ablation is evolving to a front-line therapy in many patients with atrial fibrillation. However, in patients with persistent long-standing atrial fibrillation catheter ablation strategy is more complex and time-consuming, frequently requiring repeat procedures to achieve success rates as high as in paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. In the near future, however, with growing experience and evolving technology, catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation may be extended also to patients with long-standing atrial fibrillation. PMID:22541284

  13. What Is Atrial Fibrillation?

    MedlinePlus

    ... regular beat. Certain cells in your heart make electric signals that cause the heart to contract and ... read your ECG to find out if the electric signals are normal. In atrial fibrillation (AFib), the ...

  14. Anticoagulation in atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Piccini, Jonathan P

    2014-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation increases the risk of stroke, which is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. The use of oral anticoagulation in patients with atrial fibrillation at moderate or high risk of stroke, estimated by established criteria, improves outcomes. However, to ensure that the benefits exceed the risks of bleeding, appropriate patient selection is essential. Vitamin K antagonism has been the mainstay of treatment; however, newer drugs with novel mechanisms are also available. These novel oral anticoagulants (direct thrombin inhibitors and factor Xa inhibitors) obviate many of warfarin’s shortcomings, and they have demonstrated safety and efficacy in large randomized trials of patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. However, the management of patients taking warfarin or novel agents remains a clinical challenge. There are several important considerations when selecting anticoagulant therapy for patients with atrial fibrillation. This review will discuss the rationale for anticoagulation in patients with atrial fibrillation; risk stratification for treatment; available agents; the appropriate implementation of these agents; and additional, specific clinical considerations for treatment. PMID:24733535

  15. Anticoagulation in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Steinberg, Benjamin A; Piccini, Jonathan P

    2014-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation increases the risk of stroke, which is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. The use of oral anticoagulation in patients with atrial fibrillation at moderate or high risk of stroke, estimated by established criteria, improves outcomes. However, to ensure that the benefits exceed the risks of bleeding, appropriate patient selection is essential. Vitamin K antagonism has been the mainstay of treatment; however, newer drugs with novel mechanisms are also available. These novel oral anticoagulants (direct thrombin inhibitors and factor Xa inhibitors) obviate many of warfarin's shortcomings, and they have demonstrated safety and efficacy in large randomized trials of patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. However, the management of patients taking warfarin or novel agents remains a clinical challenge. There are several important considerations when selecting anticoagulant therapy for patients with atrial fibrillation. This review will discuss the rationale for anticoagulation in patients with atrial fibrillation; risk stratification for treatment; available agents; the appropriate implementation of these agents; and additional, specific clinical considerations for treatment. PMID:24733535

  16. Atrial Fibrillation (AF or AFib)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Pressure High Blood Pressure Tools & Resources Stroke More Atrial Fibrillation (AF or AFib) Updated:Feb 10,2016 What ... to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy Atrial Fibrillation • Introduction • What is Atrial Fibrillation? • Why AFib Matters • ...

  17. Atrial fibrillation case study.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Sarah; Wilson, Tracey

    2016-03-01

    This article discusses the irregular heart rhythm caused by atrial fibrillation (AF). A brief overview of the pathophysiology will be provided. A case study is discussed to highlight the treatment and management of AF. The care provision describes common signs and symptoms and also the treatment and management of AF within the maternity care setting. The importance of maintaining the mother-baby dyad is highlighted. For the purpose of maintaining confidentiality the woman will be referred to as Shama. PMID:27044188

  18. Atrial fibrillation and inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Ozaydin, Mehmet

    2010-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common clinical arrhythmia. Recent investigations have suggested that inflammation might have a role in the pathophysiology of AF. In this review, the association between inflammation and AF, and the effects of several agents that have anti-inflammatory actions, such as statins, polyunsaturated fatty acids, corticosteroids and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers, have been investigated. PMID:21160591

  19. Hyperuricemia and Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Maharani, Nani; Kuwabara, Masanari; Hisatome, Ichiro

    2016-07-27

    The importance of atrial fibrillation (AF) as a cause of mortality and morbidity has prompted research on its pathogenesis and treatment. Recognition of AF risk factors is essential to prevent it and reduce the risk of death. Hyperuricemia has been widely accepted to be associated with the incidence of paroxysmal or persistent AF, as well as to the risk of AF in post cardiovascular surgery patients. The possible explanations for this association have been based on their relation with either oxidative stress or inflammation. To investigate the link between hyperuricemia and AF, it is necessary to refer to hyperuricemia-induced atrial remodeling. So far, both ionic channel and structural remodeling caused by hyperuricemia might be plausible explanations for the occurrence of AF. Inhibition of xanthine oxidase and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH)-oxidase, or the use of antioxidants, along with serum uric acid (SUA) level reduction to prevent inflammation, might be useful. Uric acid transporters (UATs) play a key role in the regulation of intracellular uric acid concentration. Intracellular rather than serum uric acid level is considered more important for the pathogenesis of AF. Identification of UATs expressed in cells is thus important, and targeting UATs might become a potential strategy to reduce the risk of hyperuricemia-induced atrial fibrillation. PMID:27396561

  20. Genetics Home Reference: familial atrial fibrillation

    MedlinePlus

    ... fibrillation also increases the risk of stroke and sudden death. Complications of familial atrial fibrillation can occur at ... beats , increasing the risk of syncope, stroke, and sudden death. Most cases of atrial fibrillation are not caused ...

  1. [Anticoagulation in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Schwarz, M; Bode, Ch

    2008-10-01

    In this overview the actual guideline-recommendations for anticoagulation in atrial fibrillation and the problems of the currently available therapy are discussed. Furthermore an outlook over future developments in this field is given. Effective anticoagulation can prohibit thrombembolic events and is thus essential for the prognosis of patients suffering from atrial fibrillation. Until now vitamin-K-antagonists (VKAs) and acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) are available for oral anticoagulation in these patients. VKAs demonstrate a satisfying efficiency combined with rather high bleeding hazard. ASA on the other hand allows only moderate risk reduction with minimal side effects. Thus the guidelines recommend anticoagulation tailored to the individual risk, which can be evaluated by the CHADS2-Score. New therapeutic strategies, like the factor Xa inhibitor rivaroxaban or the factor II inhibitor dabigatran, are actually evaluated in phase III studies. These drugs bear the hope of higher efficiency combined with improved safety and much more comfortable use in the daily practice (e. g. no need for INR measurement, no dose adaptation). PMID:18836647

  2. Management of atrial fibrillation in bradyarrhythmias.

    PubMed

    Boriani, Giuseppe; Padeletti, Luigi

    2015-06-01

    Sinus node disease (SND), a common indication to implant a pacemaker, is frequently associated with atrial fibrillation (AF), either at implantation (paroxysmal AF) or during follow-up, which often evolves to persistent or permanent AF. Pacemakers with an atrial lead allow continuous monitoring of the atrial rhythm and enable detection of the burden of AF. Asymptomatic atrial tachyarrhythmias, being associated with increased risk of stroke, have important prognostic implications, and their detection could guide decision-making about antithrombotic prophylaxis. Pacing mode and pacing algorithms can influence the occurrence of AF and atrial tachyarrhythmias. In DDD/DDDR pacing mode, reduction of unnecessary right ventricular pacing positively affects the occurrence and evolution of AF, but patients with a history of atrial tachyarrhythmias maintain an increased risk of arrhythmic events. In the MINERVA study, the use of algorithms that act in the atrium for preventive pacing and atrial antitachycardia pacing while minimizing right ventricular pacing was beneficial in patients with SND and previous atrial tachyarrhythmias, and was associated with a significant reduction in evolution to permanent AF. New information available on therapies delivered at the atrial level by implanted devices suggests clinical advantages that could improve current guidelines for the management of AF and atrial tachyarrhythmias. PMID:25781413

  3. Genomics of Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Gutierrez, Alejandra; Chung, Mina K

    2016-06-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common clinical arrhythmia that appears to be highly heritable, despite representing a complex interplay of several disease processes that generally do not manifest until later in life. In this manuscript, we will review the genetic basis of this complex trait established through studies of familial AF, linkage and candidate gene studies of common AF, genome wide association studies (GWAS) of common AF, and transcriptomic studies of AF. Since AF is associated with a five-fold increase in the risk of stroke, we also review the intersection of common genetic factors associated with both of these conditions. Similarly, we highlight the intersection of common genetic markers associated with some risk factors for AF, such as hypertension and obesity, and AF. Lastly, we describe a paradigm where genetic factors predispose to the risk of AF, but which may require additional stress and trigger factors in older age to allow for the clinical manifestation of AF. PMID:27139902

  4. Rhythm control in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Piccini, Jonathan P; Fauchier, Laurent

    2016-08-20

    Many patients with atrial fibrillation have substantial symptoms despite ventricular rate control and require restoration of sinus rhythm to improve their quality of life. Acute restoration (ie, cardioversion) and maintenance of sinus rhythm in patients with atrial fibrillation are referred to as rhythm control. The decision to pursue rhythm control is based on symptoms, the type of atrial fibrillation (paroxysmal, persistent, or long-standing persistent), patient comorbidities, general health status, and anticoagulation status. Many patients have recurrent atrial fibrillation and require further intervention to maintain long term sinus rhythm. Antiarrhythmic drug therapy is generally recommended as a first-line therapy and drug selection is on the basis of the presence or absence of structural heart disease or heart failure, electrocardiographical variables, renal function, and other comorbidities. In patients who continue to have recurrent atrial fibrillation despite medical therapy, catheter ablation has been shown to substantially reduce recurrent atrial fibrillation, decrease symptoms, and improve quality of life, although recurrence is common despite continued advancement in ablation techniques. PMID:27560278

  5. Rate control in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Van Gelder, Isabelle C; Rienstra, Michiel; Crijns, Harry J G M; Olshansky, Brian

    2016-08-20

    Control of the heart rate (rate control) is central to atrial fibrillation management, even for patients who ultimately require control of the rhythm. We review heart rate control in patients with atrial fibrillation, including the rationale for the intervention, patient selection, and the treatments available. The choice of rate control depends on the symptoms and clinical characteristics of the patient, but for all patients with atrial fibrillation, rate control is part of the management. Choice of drugs is patient-dependent. β blockers, alone or in combination with digoxin, or non-dihydropyridine calcium-channel blockers (not in heart failure) effectively lower the heart rate. Digoxin is least effective, but a reasonable choice for physically inactive patients aged 80 years or older, in whom other treatments are ineffective or are contraindicated, and as an additional drug to other rate-controlling drugs, especially in heart failure when instituted cautiously. Atrioventricular node ablation with pacemaker insertion for rate control should be used as an approach of last resort but is also an option early in the management of patients with atrial fibrillation treated with cardiac resynchronisation therapy. However, catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation should be considered before atrioventricular node ablation. Although rate control is a top priority and one of the first management issues for all patients with atrial fibrillation, many issues remain. PMID:27560277

  6. Atrial Fibrillation, Congestive Heart Failure, and the Middle Cerebral Artery.

    PubMed

    Ameriso, S F; Sager, P; Fisher, M

    1992-10-01

    Atrial fibrillation and congestive heart failure are risk factors for ischemic stroke usually attributed to cardiac embolism. To define potential alternative mechanisms, patients with atrial fibrillation and congestive heart failure were investigated by transcranial Doppler. Middle cerebral artery (MCA) blood flow velocities were analyzed in neurologically asymptomatic patients with nonvalvular (n = 10) and valvular (n = 13) atrial fibrillation, patients in normal sinus rhythm with congestive heart failure (n = 13), and control subjects (n = 11). Compared to patients in sinus rhythm with congestive heart failure and to control subjects, patients in both atrial fibrillation groups had significantly greater beat-to-beat variation in peak, mean, and diastolic velocities and in pulsatility index. Peak, mean, and diastolic MCA velocities in patients with atrial fibrillation and those with congestive heart failure were significantly less than those in control subjects. Patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation had a higher pulsatility index compared to each of the other three groups. These findings demonstrate substantial nonemboligenic alterations of the intracranial circulation associated with atrial fibrillation and congestive heart failure, and also provide an intracranial hemodynamic profile that may distinguish valvular from nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. PMID:27309151

  7. Who Is at Risk for Atrial Fibrillation?

    MedlinePlus

    ... from the NHLBI on Twitter. Who Is at Risk for Atrial Fibrillation? Atrial fibrillation (AF) affects millions ... than 75. AF is uncommon in children. Major Risk Factors AF is more common in people who ...

  8. Obstructive sleep apnea in atrial fibrillation patients.

    PubMed

    Arias, Miguel A; Alonso-Fernández, Alberto; García-Río, Francisco; Sánchez, Ana; López, Juana M; Pagola, Carlos

    2006-06-28

    A high prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea has been demonstrated in patients with atrial fibrillation. Our comments want to emphasize the importance of identifying and treating a large proportion of patients with atrial fibrillation who have undiagnosed obstructive sleep apnea as an additional preventive strategy for atrial fibrillation patients. PMID:16309764

  9. Cryoballoon Ablation for Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Andrade, Jason G; Dubuc, Marc; Guerra, Peter G; Macle, Laurent; Rivard, Lena; Roy, Denis; Talajic, Mario; Thibault, Bernard; Khairy, Paul

    2012-01-01

    Focal point-by-point radiofrequency catheter ablation has shown considerable success in the treatment of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. However, it is not without limitations. Recent clinical and preclinical studies have demonstrated that cryothermal ablation using a balloon catheter (Artic Front©, Medtronic CryoCath LP) provides an effective alternative strategy to treating atrial fibrillation. The objective of this article is to review efficacy and safety data surrounding cryoballoon ablation for paroxysmal and persistent atrial fibrillation. In addition, a practical step-by-step approach to cryoballoon ablation is presented, while highlighting relevant literature regarding: 1) the rationale for adjunctive imaging, 2) selection of an appropriate cryoballoon size, 3) predictors of efficacy, 4) advanced trouble-shooting techniques, and 5) strategies to reduce procedural complications, such as phrenic nerve palsy. PMID:22557842

  10. Fibrinolytic function and atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Marín, Francisco; Roldán, Vanessa; Lip, Gregory Y H

    2003-03-15

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the commonest sustained cardiac arrhythmia, which is associated with a substantial risk of stroke and thromboembolism. A prothrombotic or hypercoagulable state has been observed in these patients, although previous studies have mainly focused on various clotting factors, endothelial damage or dysfunction markers and platelet activation. However, fibrinolytic function has been less frequently studied, despite the fibrinolytic system playing an important role in preventing intravascular thrombosis. Indeed, increasing evidence suggests that an imbalance between the fibrinolytic function is of great importance in cardiovascular disease. This review will begin by providing a brief approach to fibrinolytic function and examine previous studies about fibrinolytic activity and atrial fibrillation. PMID:12818244

  11. Atrial Fibrillation in Ten Cows

    PubMed Central

    Brightling, P.; Townsend, H. G. G.

    1983-01-01

    An irregular cardiac rhythm was identified in ten adult cows during auscultation of the heart and was subsequently characterized as atrial fibrillation by electrocardiography. The occurrence of the arrhythmia was associated with primary, organic disease of the heart in two animals which had valvular endocarditis. In seven of the other cows secondary or “functional” atrial fibrillation occurred in association with disorders of abdominal origin, six gastrointestinal disorders and one uterine torsion. Spontaneous conversion to normal sinus rhythm occurred in six cows after elimination of the primary disease. ImagesFigure 1b.Figure 3a.Figure 3b. PMID:17422324

  12. [Atrial fibrillation and physical activity].

    PubMed

    Apor, Péter

    2013-03-31

    Atrial fibrillation is the most frequent arrhythmia. Its "lone" form (when underlying pathology is not discovered) can be detected in a small percentage of endurance sports participants, and in growing numbers among veterans, probably as a result of some cardiac or other irregularities. Enhanced vagal tone and sudden sympathetic impulse, repetitive oxidative stress, inflammatory processes, enlarged atria, electric instabilization can explain the higher occurrence. Treatment of atrial fibrillation enables the affected persons to participate in regular medium-intensity exercise, 3-5 hours a week, which offers a protective role against cardiovascular, metabolic and mental illnesses. PMID:23524234

  13. Atrial natriuretic peptide frameshift mutation in familial atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Hodgson-Zingman, Denice M; Karst, Margaret L; Zingman, Leonid V; Heublein, Denise M; Darbar, Dawood; Herron, Kathleen J; Ballew, Jeffrey D; de Andrade, Mariza; Burnett, John C; Olson, Timothy M

    2008-07-10

    Atrial fibrillation is a common arrhythmia that is hereditary in a small subgroup of patients. In a family with 11 clinically affected members, we mapped an atrial fibrillation locus to chromosome 1p36-p35 and identified a heterozygous frameshift mutation in the gene encoding atrial natriuretic peptide. Circulating chimeric atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) was detected in high concentration in subjects with the mutation, and shortened atrial action potentials were seen in an isolated heart model, creating a possible substrate for atrial fibrillation. This report implicates perturbation of the atrial natriuretic peptide-cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) pathway in cardiac electrical instability. PMID:18614783

  14. Surgical Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Ramlawi, Basel; Abu Saleh, Walid K

    2015-01-01

    The Cox-maze procedure for the restoration of normal sinus rhythm, initially developed by Dr. James Cox, underwent several iterations over the years. The main concept consists of creating a series of transmural lesions in the right and left atria that disrupt re-entrant circuits responsible for propagating the abnormal atrial fibrillation rhythm. The left atrial appendage is excluded as a component of the Maze procedure. For the first three iterations of the Cox- maze procedure, these lesions were performed using a surgical cut-and-sew approach that ensured transmurality. The Cox-Maze IV is the most currently accepted iteration. It achieves the same lesion set of the Cox- maze III but uses alternative energy sources to create the transmural lesions, potentially in a minimally invasive approach on the beating heart. High-frequency ultrasound, microwave, and laser energy have all been used with varying success in the past. Today, bipolar radiofrequency heat or cryotherapy cooling are the most accepted sources for creating linear lesions with consistent safety and transmurality. The robust and reliable nature of these energy delivery methods has yielded a success rate reaching 90% freedom from atrial fibrillation at 12 months. Such approaches offer a significant long-term advantage over catheter-based ablation, especially in patients having longstanding, persistent atrial fibrillation with characteristics such as dilated left atrial dimensions, poor ejection fraction, and failed catheter ablation. Based on these improved results, there currently is significant interest in developing a hybrid ablation strategy that incorporates the superior transmural robust lesions of surgical ablation, the reliable stroke prevention potential of epicardial left atrial appendage exclusion, and sophisticated mapping and confirmatory catheter-based ablation technology. Such a minimally invasive hybrid strategy for ablation may lead to the development of multidisciplinary "Afib teams" to

  15. Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery atrial clipping for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Mithiran, Harish; Sule, Jai; Sazzad, Faizus; Ong, Yilin; Kah Ti, Lian; Kofidis, Theo

    2016-05-01

    The majority of thrombi that arise due to atrial fibrillation occur in the left atrial appendage. Eliminating this cul-de-sac within the left atrium reduces the risk of stroke in these patients. We present a unique case of left atrial appendage occlusion performed via video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery, using an Atriclip to occlude the left atrial appendage in a patient with atrial fibrillation in whom anticoagulation was contraindicated due to a history of recurrent upper gastrointestinal bleeding. PMID:25504982

  16. Atrial fibrillation or flutter

    MedlinePlus

    ... the mitral valve) Hypertension Medicines Overactive thyroid gland ( hyperthyroidism ) Pericarditis Sick sinus syndrome Symptoms You may not ... procedures Heart attack Heart pacemaker High blood pressure Hyperthyroidism Pericarditis Pulse Stable angina Stroke Patient Instructions Atrial ...

  17. Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation in a Mission-Assigned Astronaut

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bauer, Peter A.; Polk, J. D.

    2010-01-01

    This presentation will explore the clinical and administrative conundrums faced by the flight surgeon upon discovering asymptomatic paroxysmal atrial fibrillation seven months prior to scheduled long duration spaceflight. The presenter will discuss the decision-making process as well as the clinical and operational outcomes.

  18. Atrial Fibrillation Treatment | NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

    MedlinePlus

    ... of this page please turn JavaScript on. Feature: Atrial Fibrillation Atrial Fibrillation: Treatment Past Issues / Winter 2015 Table of Contents Treatment for atrial fibrillation depends on how often you have symptoms, how ...

  19. A review of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed Central

    Dang, David; Arimie, Raluca; Haywood, L. Julian

    2002-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia and accounts for more physician visits and hospital days than any other cardiac rhythm disturbance. Atrial filbrillation is incresing in frequency as the population ages, and therefore, a knowledge of the clinical spectrum and available treatment regimen is essential. Here, we review the pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and current status of management. Experience is being rapidly accumulated in all of the areas discussed in the management of this important clinical entity. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 PMID:12510703

  20. Almanac 2015: atrial fibrillation research in Heart.

    PubMed

    Jawad-Ul-Qamar, Muhammad; Kirchhof, Paulus

    2016-04-01

    Atrial fibrillation continues to attract interest in the cardiovascular community and in Heart Over 60 original research and review papers published in Heart in 2014-2015 cover various aspects of atrial fibrillation, from associated conditions and precipitating factors to new approaches to management. Here, we provide an overview of articles on atrial fibrillation published in Heart in 2014-2015, highlighting new developments, emerging concepts and novel approaches to treatment. PMID:26791994

  1. Almanac 2015: atrial fibrillation research in Heart

    PubMed Central

    Jawad-Ul-Qamar, Muhammad; Kirchhof, Paulus

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation continues to attract interest in the cardiovascular community and in Heart. Over 60 original research and review papers published in Heart in 2014–2015 cover various aspects of atrial fibrillation, from associated conditions and precipitating factors to new approaches to management. Here, we provide an overview of articles on atrial fibrillation published in Heart in 2014–2015, highlighting new developments, emerging concepts and novel approaches to treatment. PMID:26791994

  2. Azathioprine-induced atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Dogan, Pinar; Grbovic, Enis; Inci, Sinan; Bayraktar, Fatih; Cagli, Kumral

    2015-01-01

    Summary Azathioprine, a purine analogue that competitively inhibits the biosynthesis of purine nucleotides, is used in a wide range of conditions. Although its side-effects are well known, cardiac side effects like paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF) are based on only a few case reports. We describe here the case of a 55-year-old woman with primary biliary cirrhosis who presented a first-detected, symptomatic AF 2 h after azathioprine therapy which resolved after discontinuation of the drug with no predisposing factors for supraventricular arrhythmias (systemic hypertension, diabetes or coronary artery disease). The temporal coincidence of atrial fibrillation and azathioprine intake and disappearance of the AF episode after discontinuation of therapy allows us to suggest an intrinsic pro-arrhythmic effect of azathioprine. Therefore, physicians should be aware of this problem when this drug is administered. PMID:26668782

  3. Atrial fibrillation: inflammation in disguise?

    PubMed

    Lappegård, K T; Hovland, A; Pop, G A M; Mollnes, T E

    2013-08-01

    Atrial fibrillation is highly prevalent, and affected patients are at an increased risk of a number of complications, including heart failure and thrombo-embolism. Over the past years, there has been increasing interest in the role of inflammatory processes in atrial fibrillation, from the first occurrence of the arrhythmia to dreaded complications such as strokes or peripheral emboli. As the standard drug combination which aims at rate control and anticoagulation only offers partial protection against complications, newer agents are needed to optimize treatment. In this paper, we review recent knowledge regarding the impact of inflammation on the occurrence, recurrence, perpetuation and complications of the arrhythmia, as well as the role of anti-inflammatory therapies in the treatment for the disease. PMID:23672430

  4. Aspirin Often Wrongly Prescribed for Atrial Fibrillation

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_159459.html Aspirin Often Wrongly Prescribed for Atrial Fibrillation Blood thinners -- not aspirin -- dramatically cut the risk of stroke, researchers say ...

  5. Surgical Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Ramlawi, Basel; Abu Saleh, Walid K.

    2015-01-01

    The Cox-maze procedure for the restoration of normal sinus rhythm, initially developed by Dr. James Cox, underwent several iterations over the years. The main concept consists of creating a series of transmural lesions in the right and left atria that disrupt re-entrant circuits responsible for propagating the abnormal atrial fibrillation rhythm. The left atrial appendage is excluded as a component of the Maze procedure. For the first three iterations of the Cox- maze procedure, these lesions were performed using a surgical cut-and-sew approach that ensured transmurality. The Cox-Maze IV is the most currently accepted iteration. It achieves the same lesion set of the Cox- maze III but uses alternative energy sources to create the transmural lesions, potentially in a minimally invasive approach on the beating heart. High-frequency ultrasound, microwave, and laser energy have all been used with varying success in the past. Today, bipolar radiofrequency heat or cryotherapy cooling are the most accepted sources for creating linear lesions with consistent safety and transmurality. The robust and reliable nature of these energy delivery methods has yielded a success rate reaching 90% freedom from atrial fibrillation at 12 months. Such approaches offer a significant long-term advantage over catheter-based ablation, especially in patients having longstanding, persistent atrial fibrillation with characteristics such as dilated left atrial dimensions, poor ejection fraction, and failed catheter ablation. Based on these improved results, there currently is significant interest in developing a hybrid ablation strategy that incorporates the superior transmural robust lesions of surgical ablation, the reliable stroke prevention potential of epicardial left atrial appendage exclusion, and sophisticated mapping and confirmatory catheter-based ablation technology. Such a minimally invasive hybrid strategy for ablation may lead to the development of multidisciplinary “Afib teams

  6. [Electrocardiographic aspects of atrial fibrillations].

    PubMed

    Motté, G; Dinanian, S; Sebag, C

    1995-01-01

    The electrocardiographic analysis of atrial fibrillation is usually easy. However, some cases may be difficult to interpret: the organisation and voltage of the fibrillation waves can be very variable leading to appearances of atypical flutter in cases with large "f" waves or, conversely, in cases with low voltage fibrillation, to those of sinus mode dysfunction. The ventricular response may be slow: the conduction is usually delayed in the atrioventricular node where concealed conduction plays an important role in determining the ventricular response. Regular ventriculogrammes correspond to a junctional or ventricular escape rhythms. Aberrant conduction in the His-Purkinje system may sometimes be observed after long diastoles (phase 4 block) but often terminates short, preceded by long cycles (phase 3 block). It is usually easy to differentiate them from ventricular ectopics or preexcitation by careful examination and application of classical diagnostic criteria. PMID:7786147

  7. Atrial remodeling, fibrosis, and atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Jalife, José; Kaur, Kuljeet

    2015-08-01

    The fundamental mechanisms governing the perpetuation of atrial fibrillation (AF), the most common arrhythmia seen in clinical practice, are poorly understood, which explains in part why AF prevention and treatment remain suboptimal. Although some clinical parameters have been identified as predicting a transition from paroxysmal to persistent AF in some patients, the molecular, electrophysiological, and inflammation changes leading to such a progression have not been described in detail. Oxidative stress, atrial dilatation, calcium overload, inflammation, microRNAs, and myofibroblast activation are all thought to be involved in AF-induced atrial remodeling. However, it is unknown to what extent and at which time points such alterations influence the remodeling process that perpetuates AF. Here we postulate a working model that might open new pathways for future investigation into mechanisms of AF perpetuation. We start from the premise that the progression to AF perpetuation is the result of interplay among manifold signaling pathways with differing kinetics. Some such pathways have relatively fast kinetics (e.g., oxidative stress-mediated shortening of refractory period); others likely depend on molecular processes with slower kinetics (e.g., transcriptional changes in myocyte ion channel protein expression mediated through inflammation and fibroblast activation). We stress the need to fully understand the relationships among such pathways should one hope to identify novel, truly effective targets for AF therapy and prevention. PMID:25661032

  8. Atrial fibrillation and physical activity

    PubMed Central

    Bosomworth, N. John

    2015-01-01

    Objective To review the evidence on the effects of various levels of physical activity (PA) on the incidence of atrial fibrillation (AF) in both the general population and in endurance athletes. Data sources A PubMed search was done initially using the MeSH headings or text words (with the search-field descriptor TIAB [title and abstract]) atrial fibrillation and exercise or physical activity or athlet* or sport*, without additional filters. Conclusions regarding quality and strength of evidence were based on the GRADE (grading of recommendations, assessment, development, and evaluation) system. Study selection No interventional studies were available. Observational studies were therefore considered acceptable, and, although larger long-term prospective cohort studies were preferred, case-control or cross-sectional trials were also included in this review. Synthesis Available evidence suggests a dose-response association linking increased exercise levels with reduced incident AF in women. The same is true in men at low and moderate levels of exertional activity. In men only, high levels of PA are associated with increased risk of AF in most, but not all, studies. This risk is moderate, with a hazard ratio of 1.29 in one of the better studies. The risk of AF for most people who exercise regularly is lower than that of a matched sedentary population. Conclusion Atrial fibrillation is probably less common as PA increases, with a demonstrable dose-response relationship. Exercise at any level should be promoted for its effect on physical well-being and mortality reduction. In men exercising at high levels, beneficial effects on AF might be lost and risk might exceed that of the sedentary population; however, the evidence is neither robust nor consistent. These men should be made aware of this modest increase in risk should they choose to continue to engage in high levels of PA. PMID:26668285

  9. Advances in Atrial Fibrillation Ablation

    PubMed Central

    Darge, Alicia; Reynolds, Matthew R.; Germano, Joseph J.

    2009-01-01

    Atrial Fibrillation (AF) is an increasingly common and costly medical problem.1–3 Given the disappointing efficacy and side effects associated with pharmacological therapy for AF, new treatment options are needed. Over the last decade, advances in our understanding of the mechanisms of AF, coupled with iterative improvements in catheter ablation techniques, have spurred the evolution of catheter ablation for AF from an experimental procedure to an increasingly important treatment option.4 This paper will review recent advances in the approaches and outcomes of AF ablation. PMID:19411729

  10. Atrial Fibrillation Ablation and Stroke.

    PubMed

    Aagaard, Philip; Briceno, David; Csanadi, Zoltan; Mohanty, Sanghamitra; Gianni, Carola; Trivedi, Chintan; Nagy-Baló, Edina; Danik, Stephan; Barrett, Conor; Santoro, Francesco; Burkhardt, J David; Sanchez, Javier; Natale, Andrea; Di Biase, Luigi

    2016-05-01

    Catheter ablation has become a widely available and accepted treatment to restore sinus rhythm in atrial fibrillation patients who fail antiarrhythmic drug therapy. Although generally safe, the procedure carries a non-negligible risk of complications, including periprocedural cerebral insults. Uninterrupted anticoagulation, maintenance of an adequate ACT during the procedure, and measures to avoid and detect thrombus build-up on sheaths and atheters during the procedure, appears useful to reduce the risk of embolic events. This is a review of the incidence, mechanisms, impact, and methods to reduce catheter ablation related cerebral insults. PMID:27150179

  11. Minimally Invasive Surgical Therapies for Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura, Yoshitsugu; Kiaii, Bob; Chu, Michael W. A.

    2012-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained arrhythmia and is associated with significant risks of thromboembolism, stroke, congestive heart failure, and death. There have been major advances in the management of atrial fibrillation including pharmacologic therapies, antithrombotic therapies, and ablation techniques. Surgery for atrial fibrillation, including both concomitant and stand-alone interventions, is an effective therapy to restore sinus rhythm. Minimally invasive surgical ablation is an emerging field that aims for the superior results of the traditional Cox-Maze procedure through a less invasive operation with lower morbidity, quicker recovery, and improved patient satisfaction. These novel techniques utilize endoscopic or minithoracotomy approaches with various energy sources to achieve electrical isolation of the pulmonary veins in addition to other ablation lines. We review advancements in minimally invasive techniques for atrial fibrillation surgery, including management of the left atrial appendage. PMID:22666609

  12. Warfarin therapy for an octogenarian who has atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Gage, B F; Fihn, S D; White, R H

    2001-03-20

    In North America, atrial fibrillation is associated with at least 75 000 ischemic strokes each year. Most of these strokes occur in patients older than 75 years of age. The high incidence of stroke in very elderly persons reflects the increasing prevalence of atrial fibrillation that occurs with advanced age, the high incidence of stroke in elderly patients, and the failure of physicians to prescribe antithrombotic therapy in most of these patients. This failure is related to the increased risk for major hemorrhage with advanced age, obfuscating the decision to institute stroke prophylaxis with antithrombotic therapy. This case-based review describes the risk and benefits of prescribing antithrombotic therapy for a hypothetical 80-year-old man who has atrial fibrillation and hypertension, and it offers practical advice on managing warfarin therapy. After concluding that the benefits of warfarin outweigh its risks in this patient, we describe how to initiate warfarin therapy cautiously and how to monitor and dose the drug. We then review five recent randomized, controlled trials that document the increased risk for stroke when an international normalized ratio (INR) of less than 2.0 is targeted among patients with atrial fibrillation. Next, we make the case that cardioversion is not needed for this asymptomatic patient with chronic atrial fibrillation. Instead, we choose to leave the patient in atrial fibrillation and to control his ventricular rate with atenolol. Later, when the INR increases to 4.9, we advocate withholding one dose of warfarin and repeating the INR test. Finally, when the patient develops dental pain, we review the analgesic agents that are safe to take with warfarin and explain why warfarin therapy does not have to be interrupted during a subsequent dental extraction. PMID:11255522

  13. [Cardiac rehabilitation in patients with atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Schlitt, Axel; Kamke, Wolfram; Guha, Manju; Haberecht, Olaf; Völler, Heinz

    2015-06-01

    The course of cardiac rehabilitation is often altered due to episodes of paroxysmal, predominantly postoperative atrial fibrillation. In symptomatic patients, a TEE-guided cardioversion - preferential DC shock - is indicated. In patients with persistent / permanent atrial fibrillation, a heart rate up to 110 / min and 170 / min at rest and during physical activity should, respectively, be tolerated. Therefore, training should not be quitted by heart rate but rather by load. The antithrombotic management is in addition a great task in treating patients with atrial fibrillation. With the exception of patients with a CHA2DS2-VASc-Score < 1, oral anticoagulation is indicated. Atrial fibrillation has little impact on social aspects, whereas the underlying heart disease and drug treatment (oral anticoagulation) has an important impact. PMID:26115137

  14. Atrial Fibrillation During an Exploration Class Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lipsett, Mark; Hamilton, Douglas; Lemery, Jay; Polk, James

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews a possible scenario of an astronaut having Atrial Fibrillation during a Mars Mission. In the case review the presentation asks several questions about the alternatives for treatment, medications and the ramifications of the decisions.

  15. Atrial Fibrillation - Multiple Languages: MedlinePlus

    MedlinePlus

    ... Supplements Videos & Tools You Are Here: Home → Multiple Languages → All Health Topics → Atrial Fibrillation URL of this page: https://medlineplus.gov/languages/atrialfibrillation.html Other topics A-Z A B ...

  16. Atrial Fibrillation - Multiple Languages: MedlinePlus

    MedlinePlus

    ... Supplements Videos & Tools You Are Here: Home → Multiple Languages → All Health Topics → Atrial Fibrillation URL of this page: https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/languages/atrialfibrillation.html Other topics A-Z A B ...

  17. Spontaneous onset of atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Zemlin, Christian W.; Mitrea, Bogdan G.; Pertsov, Arkady M.

    2009-01-01

    Most commonly, atrial fibrillation is triggered by rapid bursts of electrical impulses originating in the myocardial sleeves of pulmonary veins (PVs). However, the nature of such bursts remains poorly understood. Here, we propose a mechanism of bursting consistent with the extensive empirical information about the electrophysiology of the PVs. The mechanism is essentially non-local and involves the spontaneous initiation of non-sustained spiral waves in the distal end of the muscle sleeves of the PVs. It reproduces the experimentally observed dynamics of the bursts, including their frequency, their intermittent character, and the unusual shape of the electrical signals in the pulmonary veins that are reminiscent of so-called early afterdepolarizations (EADs). PMID:20160895

  18. New anticoagulants for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Sobieraj-Teague, Magdalena; O'Donnell, Martin; Eikelboom, John

    2009-07-01

    Atrial fibrillation is already the most common clinically significant cardiac arrhythmia and a common cause of stroke. Vitamin K antagonists are very effective for the prevention of cardioembolic stroke but have numerous limitations that limit their uptake in eligible patients with AF and reduce their effectiveness in treated patients. Multiple new anticoagulants are under development as potential replacements for vitamin K antagonists. Most are small synthetic molecules that target factor IIa (e.g., dabigatran etexilate, AZD-0837) or factor Xa (e.g., rivaroxaban, apixaban, betrixaban, DU176b, idrabiotaparinux). These drugs have predictable pharmacokinetics that allow fixed dosing without laboratory monitoring, and are being compared with vitamin K antagonists or aspirin in phase III clinical trials [corrected]. A new vitamin K antagonist (ATI-5923) with improved pharmacological properties compared with warfarin is also being evaluated in a phase III trial. None of the new agents have as yet been approved for clinical use. PMID:19739042

  19. Atrial fibrillation cardioversion following acupuncture.

    PubMed

    Dilber, Dario; Čerkez-Habek, Jasna; Barić, Hrvoje; Gradišer, Marina

    2015-11-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia and it is an independent risk for serious events. Acupuncture has been growing in popularity in the West, and there are reports of its benefits in treating AF. We report a 57-year-old man who was admitted after having an allergic reaction to amiodarone administered to treat paroxysmal AF with fast ventricular response. Cardioversion with intravenous propafenone was uneventful. Before an attempt of electric cardioversion, he was treated with acupuncture as additional therapy to peroral propafenone. After acupuncture treatment consisting of 10 treatments during 30 days period, both immediate cardioversion to sinus rhythm and no paroxysmal AF during 30 days period were recorded. PMID:26593171

  20. Atrial fibrillation cardioversion following acupuncture

    PubMed Central

    Dilber, Dario; Čerkez-Habek, Jasna; Barić, Hrvoje; Gradišer, Marina

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia and it is an independent risk for serious events. Acupuncture has been growing in popularity in the West, and there are reports of its benefits in treating AF. We report a 57-year-old man who was admitted after having an allergic reaction to amiodarone administered to treat paroxysmal AF with fast ventricular response. Cardioversion with intravenous propafenone was uneventful. Before an attempt of electric cardioversion, he was treated with acupuncture as additional therapy to peroral propafenone. After acupuncture treatment consisting of 10 treatments during 30 days period, both immediate cardioversion to sinus rhythm and no paroxysmal AF during 30 days period were recorded. PMID:26593171

  1. Atrial fibrillation care improvement collaborative

    PubMed Central

    Robelia, Paul; Kopecky, Stephen; Thacher, Tom

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an increasingly common cardiac arrhythmia. Many patients with new onset or recurrent AF present to the emergency department and are subsequently admitted to the hospital and seen by cardiology specialists for follow up. In an attempt to address this high utilization of acute health care resources, reduce costs, and improve patient care, our institution instituted a collaborative project between the departments of emergency medicine, cardiology, family medicine, and primary care internal medicine. The project team oversaw development of a new emergency department AF order set, encouraged utilization of a new oral anticoagulant (dabigatran), improved the primary care follow up connection, and deployed a multimodal education plan for primary care providers. Between 2012 and 2014, these interventions resulted in a 17% reduction in total AF per member per month (PMPM) cost, a 28% reduction in AF PMPM inpatient cost, and a 24% reduction in inpatient admissions for AF. PMID:26734425

  2. Adjuvant therapy for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Mohammed, Khaja S; Kowey, Peter R; Musco, Simone

    2010-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common heart rhythm disorder, with increasing prevalence in the aging US population and affecting more than 2.3 million people. Current approaches for managing AF are rate- or rhythm-control strategies, both using anti-thrombotic therapy to prevent thromboembolism. While great advances have been made in understanding the pathophysiology of AF, few new strategies have shown promise in prevention or treatment of AF. Recent data suggest that non-antiarrhythmic medication may be useful in modifying the substrate that allows AF precipitation and perpetuation. This article reviews the data on the role of these agents in the prevention and management of AF as an adjunct to standard therapy. PMID:20014988

  3. Spontaneous onset of atrial fibrillation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zemlin, Christian W.; Mitrea, Bogdan G.; Pertsov, Arkady M.

    2009-06-01

    Most commonly, atrial fibrillation is triggered by rapid bursts of electrical impulses originating in the myocardial sleeves of pulmonary veins (PVs). However, the nature of such bursts remains poorly understood. Here, we propose a mechanism of bursting consistent with the extensive empirical information about the electrophysiology of the PVs. The mechanism is essentially non-local and involves the spontaneous initiation of non-sustained spiral waves in the distal end of the muscle sleeves of the PVs. It reproduces the experimentally observed dynamics of the bursts, including their frequency, their intermittent character, and the unusual shape of the electrical signals in the pulmonary veins that are reminiscent of so-called early afterdepolarizations (EADs).

  4. [Evidence-based treatment of atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Máquez, Manlio F; Gómez Flores, Jorge

    2006-01-01

    Radiofrequency catheter ablation has emerged as a curative therapy for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation based on studies demonstrating the role of triggering foci in the pulmonary veins for the initiation of atrial fibrillation. Catheter ablation is performed by a trans-septal approach using radiofrequency energy at the ostium of each pulmonary vein. Mapping is guided by special catheters. Sequential radiofrequency applications eliminates or dissociates pulmonary vein muscle activity. Although complications exists, this procedure can be curative for these patients. PMID:17017102

  5. Acute treatment of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Kowey, P R; Marinchak, R A; Rials, S J; Filart, R A

    1998-03-12

    Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is a common clinical entity, responsible for significant morbidity and mortality, but it also accounts for a large percentage of healthcare dollar expenditures. Efforts to treat this arrhythmia in the past have focused on subacute antithrombotic therapy and eventually use of antiarrhythmic drugs for maintenance of sinus rhythm. However, there has been a growing interest in the concept of acute electrical and pharmacologic conversion. This treatment strategy has a number of benefits, including immediate alleviation of patient symptoms, avoidance of antithrombotic therapy, and prevention of electrophysiologic remodeling, which is thought to contribute to the perpetuation of the arrhythmia. There is also increasing evidence that this is a cost-effective strategy in that it may obviate admission to the hospital and the cost of long-term therapy. This article represents a summary of the treatments that may be used acutely to control the ventricular response to AFib, prevent thromboembolic events, and provide for acute conversion either pharmacologically or electrically. It includes information on modalities that are currently available and those that are under active development. We anticipate that an active, acute treatment approach to AFib and atrial flutter will become the therapeutic norm in the next few years, especially as the benefits of these interventions are demonstrated in clinical trials. PMID:9525568

  6. [Catheter ablation of atrial flutter and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Márquez, Manlio F

    2003-01-01

    Radiofrequency catheter ablation has emerged as a curative therapy for atrial flutter based on studies demonstrating the role of the cavotricuspid isthmus. With a high rate of success and minimal complications, catheter ablation is the therapy of choice for patients with the common type of atrial flutter. Left atrial flutter, non-cavotricuspid isthmus dependent, and those associated with heart disease have a worst outcome with catheter ablation. Radiofrequency catheter ablation has also emerged as a curative therapy for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation based on studies demonstrating the role of triggering foci in the pulmonary veins for the initiation of atrial fibrillation. Catheter ablation is performed by a transseptal approach using radiofrequency energy at the ostium of each pulmonary vein. Mapping is guided by special catheters. Sequential radiofrequency applications eliminates or dissociates pulmonary vein muscle activity. Although complications exists, this is the only curative method for these patients. PMID:12966653

  7. What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation?

    MedlinePlus

    ... from the NHLBI on Twitter. What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation? Atrial fibrillation (AF) ... the lungs and body. This can lead to signs and symptoms, such as: Palpitations (feelings that your ...

  8. [Antithrombotic management in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Fauchier, Laurent; Taillandier, Sophie; Clementy, Nicolas

    2013-02-01

    There is increasing recognition of the value of oral anticoagulation for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation (AF), and the availability of new oral anticoagulants that overcome the limitations of vitamin K antagonists (VKA). Stroke risk assessment using the CHA2DS2-Vasc score allows identification of patients who are at truly low risk (score = 0) who should need no antithrombotic therapy, while all others (CHA2DS2-Vasc score > or = 1 with a risk of thromboembolic event > 1% per year) would be considered for oral anticoagulation. The HAS-BLED score has been recently proposed to easily assess bleeding risk in AF patients. A score of > or = 3 indicates "high risk" and some caution and regular review of the patient are needed. It also makes the clinician think of correctable common bleeding risk factors. The direct thrombin inhibitor dabigatran and factor Xa inhibitors rivaroxaban and apixaban are new oral anticoagulants that are at least as efficacious and safe as VKA in non valvular AF. Their advantages are easier use, predictable anticoagulant effects, low propensity for food and drug interactions, and lower rates of intracranial bleeding than with VKA, but they should not be used in patients with kidney disease at the present time. Overall, one may expect that more AF patients will be appropriately treated with oral anticoagulation in the next years. PMID:23513780

  9. Atrial Fibrillation Complications | NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

    MedlinePlus

    ... of this page please turn JavaScript on. Feature: Atrial Fibrillation Atrial Fibrillation: Complications Past Issues / Winter 2015 Table of Contents ... has two major complications—stroke and heart failure. Atrial Fibrillation and Stroke Click to enlarge image This illustration ...

  10. Treatment Guidelines of Atrial Fibrillation (AFib or AF)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Pressure Tools & Resources Stroke More Treatment Guidelines of Atrial Fibrillation (AFib or AF) Updated:Jun 23,2016 What ... content was last reviewed on 04/16/14. Atrial Fibrillation • Introduction • What is Atrial Fibrillation? • Why AFib Matters • ...

  11. Incidence and predictive factors of atrial fibrillation after ablation of typical atrial flutter.

    PubMed

    Laurent, Valérie; Fauchier, Laurent; Pierre, Bertrand; Grimard, Caroline; Babuty, Dominique

    2009-03-01

    Although cavotricuspid isthmus radiofrequency catheter ablation is considered curative therapy for typical atrial flutter, many patients develop an atrial fibrillation after ablation. The purpose of our study was to determine the incidence and the predictive factors of post-ablation atrial fibrillation. One hundred and forty eight consecutive patients underwent cavotricuspid isthmus ablation for the treatment of typical atrial flutter between January 2004 and December 2005 in our electrophysiological department. Complete cavotricuspid isthmus block was successfully obtained in 96.6% of the patients. At the end of the electrophysiological study a sustained atrial fibrillation was inducible in 20 patients (13.5%). During an average follow-up of 21.3 +/- 8.2 months, atrial fibrillation occurred in 27% of the patients. Univariate analysis identified four parameters correlated with post-ablation atrial fibrillation among the 21 parameters tested: the young age of the patients, a prior history of atrial fibrillation, an inducible atrial fibrillation, and a paroxysmal atrial flutter. Only inducible atrial fibrillation and paroxysmal atrial flutter were independent factors linked to atrial fibrillation after ablation. In our study the incidence of atrial fibrillation after cavotricuspid isthmus radiofrequency catheter ablation is 152 per 1,000 patient-years, i.e. 25 times higher than the incidence of atrial fibrillation in the general population of the same age. Twenty five percent of the patients who had neither prior history of atrial fibrillation nor structural heart disease suffered from atrial fibrillation during a mean follow-up of 21.3 +/- 8.2 months. All these results suggest that atrial flutter and fibrillation could be manifestations of a more general electrophysiologic disease. They emphasize the need for all these patients to benefit from regular, long-term cardiological follow-up after cavotricuspid isthmus ablation because of the high incidence of atrial

  12. Antithrombotic Therapy for Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    You, John J.; Singer, Daniel E.; Howard, Patricia A.; Lane, Deirdre A.; Eckman, Mark H.; Fang, Margaret C.; Hylek, Elaine M.; Schulman, Sam; Go, Alan S.; Hughes, Michael; Spencer, Frederick A.; Manning, Warren J.; Halperin, Jonathan L.

    2012-01-01

    Background: The risk of stroke varies considerably across different groups of patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). Antithrombotic prophylaxis for stroke is associated with an increased risk of bleeding. We provide recommendations for antithrombotic treatment based on net clinical benefit for patients with AF at varying levels of stroke risk and in a number of common clinical scenarios. Methods: We used the methods described in the Methodology for the Development of Antithrombotic Therapy and Prevention of Thrombosis Guidelines: Antithrombotic Therapy and Prevention of Thrombosis, 9th ed: American College of Chest Physicians Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guidelines article of this supplement. Results: For patients with nonrheumatic AF, including those with paroxysmal AF, who are (1) at low risk of stroke (eg, CHADS2 [congestive heart failure, hypertension, age ≥ 75 years, diabetes mellitus, prior stroke or transient ischemic attack] score of 0), we suggest no therapy rather than antithrombotic therapy, and for patients choosing antithrombotic therapy, we suggest aspirin rather than oral anticoagulation or combination therapy with aspirin and clopidogrel; (2) at intermediate risk of stroke (eg, CHADS2 score of 1), we recommend oral anticoagulation rather than no therapy, and we suggest oral anticoagulation rather than aspirin or combination therapy with aspirin and clopidogrel; and (3) at high risk of stroke (eg, CHADS2 score of ≥ 2), we recommend oral anticoagulation rather than no therapy, aspirin, or combination therapy with aspirin and clopidogrel. Where we recommend or suggest in favor of oral anticoagulation, we suggest dabigatran 150 mg bid rather than adjusted-dose vitamin K antagonist therapy. Conclusions: Oral anticoagulation is the optimal choice of antithrombotic therapy for patients with AF at high risk of stroke (CHADS2 score of ≥ 2). At lower levels of stroke risk, antithrombotic treatment decisions will require a more individualized

  13. Dabigatran etexilate in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Vora, Amit

    2013-12-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) affects millions worldwide. Stroke is the most devastating complication of AF and is associated with a huge disease burden. As a preventive measure, anticoagulant therapy is recommended for most AF patients based on presence of stroke risk factors. For the past six decades warfarin remained the gold standard for stroke prevention in AF (SPAF). However, it is associated with numerous limitations such as a high risk of drug-drug, drug-food interactions and need for frequent INR (2-3) monitoring. Novel oral anticoagulant (NOAC) dabigatran etexilate is a selective, specific, reversible direct thrombin inhibitor that has been approved in India for SPAF and primary venous thromboembolism prevention. The efficacy and safety of dabigatran in AF has been established the "Randomized Evaluation of Long-Term Anticoagulant Therapy (RE-LY)", a randomized clinical trial. RE-LY (n = 18,113) demonstrated that the efficacy of dabigatran 110 mg BID was as good as well controlled warfarin and dabigatran 150 mg BID reduced the risk of ischaemic stroke by 25% (P = 0.03). Till date, 150mg dabigatran is the only NOAC offering a superior reduction in most commonly seen ischemic strokes due to AF compared to warfarin. Additionally, both doses of dabigatran significantly reduced the risk of total bleeds, intracranial, and life threatening bleeds versus warfarin (p < 0.05). Dabigatran has advantages over warfarin including predictable pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic profile, minimal drug-drug and no drug-food interactions while no monitoring is needed.The 150 mg dose of dabigatran should be considered in younger patients with a low risk of bleeding and good renal function to achieve a superior ischemic stroke reduction, whereas, the 110 mg dose should be considered in elderly patients, those with mild to moderate renal function or those with high risk of bleeding. PMID:24968547

  14. Accurate, Automated Detection of Atrial Fibrillation in Ambulatory Recordings.

    PubMed

    Linker, David T

    2016-06-01

    A highly accurate, automated algorithm would facilitate cost-effective screening for asymptomatic atrial fibrillation. This study analyzed a new algorithm and compared it to existing techniques. The incremental benefit of each step in refinement of the algorithm was measured, and the algorithm was compared to other methods using the Physionet atrial fibrillation and normal sinus rhythm databases. When analyzing segments of 21 RR intervals or less, the algorithm had a significantly higher area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) than the other algorithms tested. At analysis segment sizes of up to 101 RR intervals, the algorithm continued to have a higher AUC than any of the other methods tested, although the difference from the second best other algorithm was no longer significant, with an AUC of 0.9992 with a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 0.9986-0.9998, vs. 0.9986 (CI 0.9978-0.9994). With identical per-subject sensitivity, per-subject specificity of the current algorithm was superior to the other tested algorithms even at 101 RR intervals, with no false positives (CI 0.0-0.8%) vs. 5.3% false positives for the second best algorithm (CI 3.4-7.9%). The described algorithm shows great promise for automated screening for atrial fibrillation by reducing false positives requiring manual review, while maintaining high sensitivity. PMID:26850411

  15. Atrial Fibrillation in the Young: A Neurologist's Nightmare

    PubMed Central

    Raphael, Claire E.

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia seen in clinical practice with prevalence in excess of 33 million worldwide. Although often asymptomatic and until recently considered a “benign” arrhythmia, it is now appreciated that thromboembolism resulting from AF results in significant morbidity and mortality predominantly due to stroke. Although an arrhythmia more commonly affecting the elderly, AF can also occur in the young. This review focuses on the impact of AF in the younger population and discusses the dilemmas of managing younger patients with AF. PMID:25922764

  16. Early detection of occult atrial fibrillation and stroke prevention.

    PubMed

    Keach, Joseph Walker; Bradley, Steven M; Turakhia, Mintu P; Maddox, Thomas M

    2015-07-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a very common arrhythmia and significantly increases stroke risk. This risk can be mitigated with oral anticoagulation, but AF is often asymptomatic, or occult, preventing timely detection and treatment. Accordingly, occult AF may cause stroke before it is clinically diagnosed. Currently, guidelines for the early detection and treatment of occult AF are limited. This review addresses recent advancements in occult AF detection methods, identification of populations at high risk for occult AF, the treatment of occult AF with oral anticoagulation, as well as ongoing trials that may answer critically important questions regarding occult AF screening. PMID:25935765

  17. Sinus bradycardia, junctional rhythm, and low-rate atrial fibrillation in Short QT syndrome during 20 years of follow-up: three faces of the same genetic problem.

    PubMed

    Righi, Daniela; Silvetti, Massimo S; Drago, Fabrizio

    2016-03-01

    We describe the case of an asymptomatic girl with sinus bradycardia and short QT interval at birth, junctional bradycardia in infancy requiring single-chamber pacemaker, atrial fibrillation in adolescence, and V141M mutation in the KCNQ1 gene. Atrial fibrillation recurred and became unresponsive to electrical or anti-arrhythmic therapy. During 20 years of follow-up, a progressive evolution from sinus node dysfunction to low-rate atrial fibrillation was observed. PMID:26279191

  18. Noninvasive mapping to guide atrial fibrillation ablation.

    PubMed

    Lim, Han S; Zellerhoff, Stephan; Derval, Nicolas; Denis, Arnaud; Yamashita, Seigo; Berte, Benjamin; Mahida, Saagar; Hooks, Darren; Aljefairi, Nora; Shah, Ashok J; Sacher, Frédéric; Hocini, Meleze; Jais, Pierre; Haissaguerre, Michel

    2015-03-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a dynamic rhythm. Noninvasive mapping overcomes many previous barriers to mapping such a dynamic rhythm, by providing a beat-to-beat, biatrial, panoramic view of the AF process. Catheter ablation of AF drivers guided by noninvasive mapping has yielded promising clinical results and has advanced understanding of the underlying pathophysiologic processes of this common heart rhythm disorder. PMID:25784025

  19. Update on atrial fibrillation: part I.

    PubMed

    Savelieva, Irina; Camm, John

    2008-02-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an epidemic, affecting 1% to 1.5% of the population in the developed world. Projected data from the population-based studies suggest that the prevalence of AF will grow at least 3-fold by 2050. The health and economic burden imposed by AF and AF-related morbidity is enormous. Atrial fibrillation has a multiplicity of causes ranging from genetic to degenerative, but hypertension and heart failure are the commonest and epidemiologically most prevalent conditions associated with AF as both have been shown to create an arrhythmogenic substrate. Several theories emerged regarding the mechanism of AF, which can be combined into two groups: the single focus hypothesis and the multiple sources hypothesis. Several lines of evidence point to the relevance of both hypotheses to the mechanism of AF, probably with a different degree of involvement depending on the variety of AF (paroxysmal or persistent). Sustained AF alters electrophysiological and structural properties of the atrial myocardium such that the atria become more susceptible to the initiation and maintenance of the arrhythmia, a process known as atrial remodeling. Angiotensin II has been recognized as a key element in atrial remodeling in association with AF opening the possibility of exploitation of "upstream" therapies to prevent or delay atrial remodeling. The clinical significance of AF lies predominantly in a 5-fold increased risk of stroke. The limitations of warfarin prompted the development of new antithrombotic drugs, which include anticoagulants, such as direct oral thrombin inhibitors (dabigatran) and factor Xa inhibitors (rivaroxaban, apixaban). Novel mechanical approaches for the prevention of cardioembolic stroke have recently been evaluated: percutaneous left atrial appendage occluders, minimally invasive surgical isolation of the left atrial appendage, and implantation of carotid filtering devices. PMID:18257025

  20. Pulse Check: The Importance of Self-Screening for Atrial Fibrillation Twice a Year

    MedlinePlus

    ... of self-screening for atrial fibrillation twice a year What is atrial fibrillation? Atrial fibrillation (AF) is ... adult do a pulse check routinely twice a year. A good time to remember to check your ...

  1. Myeloperoxidase acts as a profibrotic mediator of atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Rudolph, Volker; Andrié, René P; Rudolph, Tanja K; Friedrichs, Kai; Klinke, Anna; Hirsch-Hoffmann, Birgit; Schwoerer, Alexander P; Lau, Denise; Fu, XiaoMing; Klingel, Karin; Sydow, Karsten; Didié, Michael; Seniuk, Anika; von Leitner, Eike-Christin; Szoecs, Katalin; Schrickel, Jan W; Treede, Hendrik; Wenzel, Ulrich; Lewalter, Thorsten; Nickenig, Georg; Zimmermann, Wolfram-Hubertus; Meinertz, Thomas; Böger, Rainer H; Reichenspurner, Hermann; Freeman, Bruce A; Eschenhagen, Thomas; Ehmke, Heimo; Hazen, Stanley L; Willems, Stephan; Baldus, Stephan

    2010-01-01

    Observational clinical and ex vivo studies have established a strong association between atrial fibrillation and inflammation1. However, whether inflammation is the cause or the consequence of atrial fibrillation and which specific inflammatory mediators may increase the atria's susceptibility to fibrillation remain elusive. Here we provide experimental and clinical evidence for the mechanistic involvement of myeloperoxidase (MPO), a heme enzyme abundantly expressed by neutrophils, in the pathophysiology of atrial fibrillation. MPO-deficient mice pretreated with angiotensin II (AngII) to provoke leukocyte activation showed lower atrial tissue abundance of the MPO product 3-chlorotyrosine, reduced activity of matrix metalloproteinases and blunted atrial fibrosis as compared to wild-type mice. Upon right atrial electrophysiological stimulation, MPO-deficient mice were protected from atrial fibrillation, which was reversed when MPO was restored. Humans with atrial fibrillation had higher plasma concentrations of MPO and a larger MPO burden in right atrial tissue as compared to individuals devoid of atrial fibrillation. In the atria, MPO colocalized with markedly increased formation of 3-chlorotyrosine. Our data demonstrate that MPO is a crucial prerequisite for structural remodeling of the myocardium, leading to an increased vulnerability to atrial fibrillation. PMID:20305660

  2. Multimorbidity in Older Adults with Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Michael A

    2016-05-01

    Older adults with atrial fibrillation often have multiple comorbid conditions, including common geriatric syndromes. Pharmacologic therapy, whether for rate control or rhythm control, can result in complications related to polypharmacy in patients who are often on multiple medications for other conditions. Because of uncertainty about the relative risks and benefits of rate versus rhythm control (including antiarrhythmic or ablation therapy), anticoagulation, and procedural treatments (eg, ablation, left atrial appendage closure, pacemaker placement) in older patients with multimorbidity, shared decision-making is essential. However, this may be challenging in patients with cognitive dysfunction, high fall risk, or advanced comorbidity. PMID:27113149

  3. An uncommon complication of atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Mallouppas, Michael; Christopoulos, Christos; Watson, Will; Cader, Ruzaika; Cooper, John

    2015-01-01

    Coronary embolism is a well-recognized cause of myocardial infarction. It is often under diagnosed and cardiologists need to be vigilant for this diagnosis. A 77-year-old man presented with chest pain with an ECG showing a new diagnosis of atrial fibrillation. Owing to ongoing chest pain coronary angiography was performed and revealed an acute occlusion of the left circumflex artery with coronary blood flow restored following aspiration of a large red thrombus. Following this the coronary vessel looked smooth with no residual coronary lesions requiring angioplasty or plaque rupture to justify the thrombosis. The clinical picture and angiographic data suggested the coronary embolus was secondary to the newly diagnosed atrial fibrillation.

  4. Atrial fibrillation due to licorice root syrup.

    PubMed

    Erkuş, Musluhittin Emre; Altıparmak, İbrahim Halil; Demirbağ, Recep; Günebakmaz, Özgür

    2016-04-01

    While it is known that consumption of licorice may lead to cardiac arrhythmias, there have been no reports of atrial fibrillation resulting from the consumption of licorice root syrup. A 57-year-old male with no prior history of cardiovascular disease was admitted to the emergency department with palpitation. His electrocardiogram showed atrial fibrillation with a moderate to rapid ventricular rate. In laboratory assessment, potassium was 2.0 mmol/L and plasma renin activity and aldosterone level were suppressed (<300 ng/L/hour, 42 ng/L respectively). Volumes of the heart chambers were within normal range and functions and structures of the heart valves were normal in echocardiographic assessment. The arrhythmia was resolved with propafenone infusion. PMID:27138313

  5. Atrial Fibrillation During an Exploration Class Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lipset, Mark A.; Lemery, Jay; Polk, J. D.; Hamilton, Douglas R.

    2010-01-01

    Background: A long-duration exploration class mission is fraught with numerous medical contingency plans. Herein, we explore the challenges of symptomatic atrial fibrillation (AF) occurring during an exploration class mission. The actions and resources required to ameliorate the situation, including the availability of appropriate pharmaceuticals, monitoring devices, treatment modalities, and communication protocols will be investigated. Challenges of Atrial Fibrillation during an Exploration Mission: Numerous etiologies are responsible for the initiation of AF. On Earth, we have the time and medical resources to evaluate and determine the causative situation for most cases of AF and initiate therapy accordingly. During a long-duration exploration class mission resources will be severely restricted. How is one to determine if new onset AF is due to recent myocardial infarction, pulmonary embolism, fluid overload, thyrotoxicosis, cardiac structural abnormalities, or CO poisoning? Which pharmaceutical therapy should be initiated and what potential side effects can be expected? Should anti-coagulation therapy be initiated? How would one monitor the therapeutic treatment of AF in microgravity? What training would medical officers require, and which communication strategies should be developed to enable the best, safest therapeutic options for treatment of AF during a long-duration exploration class mission? Summary: These questions will be investigated with expert opinion on disease elucidation, efficient pharmacology, therapeutic monitoring, telecommunication strategies, and mission cost parameters with emphasis on atrial fibrillation being just one illustration of the tremendous challenges that face a long-duration exploration mission. The limited crew training time, medical hardware, and drugs manifested to deal with such an event predicate that aggressive primary and secondary prevention strategies be developed to protect a multibillion-dollar asset like the

  6. Sequential Hybrid Procedure for Persistent Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Bulava, Alan; Mokracek, Ales; Hanis, Jiri; Kurfirst, Vojtech; Eisenberger, Martin; Pesl, Ladislav

    2015-01-01

    Background Catheter ablation of persistent atrial fibrillation yields an unsatisfactorily high number of failures. The hybrid approach has recently emerged as a technique that overcomes the limitations of both surgical and catheter procedures alone. Methods and Results We investigated the sequential (staged) hybrid method, which consists of a surgical thoracoscopic radiofrequency ablation procedure followed by radiofrequency catheter ablation 6 to 8 weeks later using the CARTO 3 mapping system. Fifty consecutive patients (mean age 62±7 years, 32 males) with long‐standing persistent atrial fibrillation (41±34 months) and a dilated left atrium (>45 mm) were included and prospectively followed in an unblinded registry. During the electrophysiological part of the study, all 4 pulmonary veins were found to be isolated in 36 (72%) patients and a complete box‐lesion was confirmed in 14 (28%) patients. All gaps were successfully re‐ablated. Twelve months after the completed hybrid ablation, 47 patients (94%) were in normal sinus rhythm (4 patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation required propafenone and 1 patient underwent a redo catheter procedure). The majority of arrhythmias recurred during the first 3 months. Beyond 12 months, there were no arrhythmia recurrences detected. The surgical part of the procedure was complicated by 7 (13.7%) major complications, while no serious adverse events were recorded during the radiofrequency catheter part of the procedure. Conclusions The staged hybrid epicardial–endocardial treatment of long‐standing persistent atrial fibrillation seems to be extremely effective in maintenance of normal sinus rhythm compared to radiofrequency catheter or surgical ablation alone. Epicardial ablation alone cannot guarantee durable transmural lesions. Clinical Trial Registration URL: www.ablace.cz Unique identifier: cz‐060520121617 PMID:25809548

  7. [Medicinal rhythm control in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Nowak, Bernd; Fürnkranz, Alexander

    2014-03-01

    Medicinal antiarrhythmic therapy is either used in the acute setting to convert atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm or as chronic medication to preserve sinus rhythm if a rhythm control strategy is followed. The choice of the antiarrhythmic agent is based on the presence or absence of structural heart disease. In addition, oral anticoagulation should be established according to current guidelines. In the acute setting the armamentarium comprises flecainide, propafenone, vernakalant and amiodarone. Usually, combination therapy with an atrioventricular (AV) node slowing drug (a beta blocker or verapamil) is used. For chronic rhythm control a class IC drug, such as sotalol, dronedarone and amiodarone is given depending on the comorbidities. In the absence of structural heart disease, rare episodes of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation can be treated by a pill-in-the-pocket strategy, i.e. self-administered pharmacological cardioversion with flecainide or propafenone. Despite recent advances in catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation, medical rhythm control continues to play an important role due to its ubiquitous availability and relatively easy use. The risk for proarrhythmia has to be evaluated in all patients. PMID:24549989

  8. Dronedarone in the management of atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Saleem, TS Mohamed; Bharani, K; Chetty, C Madhusudhana; Gauthaman, K

    2010-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common type of tachyarrhythmia caused by multiple re-entrant wave forms within the atria and bombarding the atrioventricular node several times making it beat in a rapid, disorganized fashion termed “fibrillation”. In atrial fibrillation, atria beat more than 300 times per minute. The arrhythmatous condition needs to be controlled, as humans cannot withstand this rapid and chaotic beating of the heart. New investigational drugs like Dronedarone® are being used. Dronedarone is the most recent antiarrhythmic drugs. It was approved by US-FDA on July 2nd 2009 and is available in the USA as Multaq tablets (400 mg). Dronedarone falls under the category of multiple ion channel blocker. It mainly targets the repolarization currents, making them less active and hence prolonging the action potential duration (APD). Dronedarone also exhibits antiadrenergic activity, thus reducing the pace of the pacemaker. Dronedarone has been proven to be a safer and efficacious AAD, evidenced by both animal and human studies. These studies showed that there was prolongation of the APD and absence of QT interval prolongation with long term administration of the drug. Also there was reduced thyroid hormone receptor expression. Dronedarone is significantly safer and effective in maintaining the sinus rhythm and reducing the ventricular proarrhythmias, justifying it for the long term treatment of atrial fibrillation compared to other antiarrhythmic drugs. PMID:27147833

  9. Atrial fibrillation pearls and perils of management.

    PubMed Central

    Kudenchuk, P J

    1996-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation, a common arrhythmia, is responsible for considerable cardiovascular morbidity. Its management demands more than antiarrhythmic therapy alone, but must address the causes and consequences of the arrhythmia. Although remediable causes are infrequently found, a thorough search for associated heart disease or its risk factors results in better-informed patient management. Controlling the ventricular response and protecting from thromboembolic complications are important initial goals of therapy and may include the administration of aspirin in younger, low-risk patients. Older patients and those with risk factors for systemic embolism are not adequately protected from stroke complications by aspirin therapy alone. It remains controversial whether all high-risk patients should receive warfarin and at what intensity. Whether and how sinus rhythm should be restored and maintained poses the greatest therapeutic controversy for atrial fibrillation. The mortal risk of antiarrhythmic therapy is substantially greater in patients with evidence of heart failure. In such persons, the risks and benefits of maintaining normal sinus rhythm with antiarrhythmic medications should be weighted carefully. A definitive cure for atrial fibrillation remains elusive, but promising surgical and catheter ablation therapies are being developed. PMID:8686300

  10. Ventricular fibrillation and atrial fibrillation are two different beasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, R. A.; Jalife, J.

    1998-03-01

    Although the mechanisms of fibrillation are no doubt multi-faceted, the geometry of the heart may play a major role in the dynamics of wave propagation during fibrillation [A. T. Winfree, Science 266, 1003-1006 (1994)]. The ventricles are thick chambers made up of sheets of parallel muscle fibers with the direction of fibers rotating across the ventricular walls (rotational anisotropy). The thick walls of the ventricles allow reentry to develop transmurally, provided the wavelength is sufficiently small. Depending on the kinetics of heart cells, the dynamics of rotating waves in three dimensions may be fundamentally different than in two dimensions, leading to destabilization of reentry and ventricular fibrillation (VF) in thick ventricles. The atria have an intricate geometry comprised of a thin sheet of cardiac tissue attached to a very complex network of pectinate muscles. The branching geometry of the pectinate muscles may lead to destabilization of two-dimensional reentry via "long-distance" electrical connections giving rise to atrial fibrillation (AF). Therefore, although fibrillation occurs via complex three-dimensional wave propagation in the ventricles and the atria, the underlying mechanisms and factors that sustain VF and AF are probably different.

  11. Atrial fibrillation from the pathologist's perspective.

    PubMed

    Corradi, Domenico

    2014-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF), the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia encountered in clinical practice, is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Electrophysiologically, it is characterized by a high rate of asynchronous atrial cell depolarization causing a loss of atrial contractile function and irregular ventricular rates. For a long time, AF was considered as a pure functional disorder without any structural background. Only in recent years, have new mapping and imaging techniques identified atrial locations, which are very often involved in the initiation and maintenance of this supraventricular arrhythmia (i.e. the distal portion of the pulmonary veins and the surrounding atrial myocardium). Morphological analysis of these myocardial sites has demonstrated significant structural remodeling as well as paved the way for further knowledge of AF natural history, pathogenesis, and treatment. This architectural myocardial disarrangement is induced by the arrhythmia itself and the very frequently associated cardiovascular disorders. At the same time, the structural remodeling is also capable of sustaining AF, thereby creating a sort of pathogenetic vicious circle. This review focuses on current understanding about the structural and genetic bases of AF with reference to their classification, pathogenesis, and clinical implications. PMID:24462196

  12. Novel Interventional Strategies for the Treatment of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Siontis, Konstantinos C; Oral, Hakan

    2016-01-01

    The landscape of the invasive management of atrial fibrillation, the most common sustained arrhythmia in humans, has changed dramatically in the last decade owing to numerous advances in arrhythmia mapping and ablation technologies. The current review critically appraises novel interventional strategies for the treatment of atrial fibrillation with a focus on clinical effectiveness and safety. PMID:27403294

  13. [Pharmacological cardioversion with intravenous propafenone in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Velázquez Rodríguez, E; Cancino Rodríguez, C; Arias Estrada, S; Rangel Rojo, J; Hernández Morales, E; Uribe Muñoz, A

    2000-01-01

    The efficacy and safety of intravenous propafenone for conversion of recent-onset and chronic atrial fibrillation was assessed in 46 patients. 40 with atrial fibrillation associated with or without structural heart disease (mean age 63 +/- 14 years) and 6 patients with atrial fibrillation related to the Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome (mean age 34.8 +/- 13 years). Propafenone treatment was administered at 2 mg/kg over 15 minutes under continuous electrocardiographic monitoring. In 28 of 32 (87.5%) patients with paroxysmal and/or recent-onset atrial fibrillation a stable sinus rhythm was restored within 1 hour after propafenone (mean 17 +/- 11 minutes) and in only 3 of 8 (37.5%) with chronic atrial fibrillation (p < 0.05). Conversion to sinus rhythm was obtained in 5 of 6 (83.3%) patients with atrial fibrillation related ventricular preexcitation, mean time 21 +/- 12 minutes. Propafenone had an additional effect reducing mean heart rate (141 +/- 21 to 102 +/- 15 beat per minute, p < 0.05) and the shortest preexcited R-R intervals was increased, mean 231.6 +/- 27.8 to 355 +/- 37.2 milliseconds (p < 0.001) in cases associated with ventricular preexcitation. Dizziness, hypotension and transient conduction disturbances occurred in only one patient with rheumatic valvular heart disease: EF 40%. Propafenone is an effective and safe antiarrhythmic drug for converting paroxysmal and/or recent-onset atrial fibrillation of various origins with a more limited efficacy in chronic atrial fibrillation. PMID:10932801

  14. Anticoagulation Management in Patients with Pacemaker-Detected Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Poposka, Lidija; Boskov, Vladimir; Risteski, Dejan; Taleski, Jane; Georgievska-Ismail, Ljubica

    2016-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: In patients with an implanted pacemaker, asymptomatic atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with an increased risk of thrombo-embolic complications. There is still no consensus which duration of episodes of atrial fibrillation should be taken as an indicator for inclusion of oral anticoagulation therapy (OAC). MATERIAL AND METHODS: A total of 104 patients who had no AF episodes in the past and have an indication for permanent pacing were included in the study. RESULTS: During an average follow-up of 18 months, 33 of the patients developed episodes of AF. Inclusion of OAC was performed in 17 patients, in whom AF was recorded, although in all patients CHA2DS2-VASc score was ≥ 1. The inclusion of OAC showed a statistically significant correlation with increasing duration of episodes of AF (r = 0.502, p = 0.003). During the follow-up period none of the patients developed thrombo-embolic complication. CONCLUSION: Considering that our group of patients had no thrombo-embolic events, we could conclude that dividing the AF episodes in less than 1% in 24 hours and longer than 1% within 24 hours could be an indicator for decision-making to include OAK if the CHA2DS2-VASc score is ≥ 1. PMID:27335594

  15. What have we learned of ablation procedures for atrial fibrillation?

    PubMed

    Maurer, T; Lundqvist, C B; Tilz, R; Mont, L; Chierchia, G-B; Malmborg, H; Metzner, A; Kuck, K-H

    2016-05-01

    Atrial fibrillation is a widespread disease of growing clinical, economic and social importance. Interventional therapy for atrial fibrillation offers encouraging results, with pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) as the established cornerstone. Yet, the challenge to create durable transmural lesions remains, leading to recurrence of atrial fibrillation in long-term follow-up even after multiple ablation procedures in 20% of patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and approximately 50% with persistent atrial fibrillation. To overcome these limitations, innovative tools such as the cryoballoon and contact force catheters have been introduced and have demonstrated their potential for safe and effective PVI. Furthermore, advanced pharmacological and pacing manoeuvres enhance evaluation of conduction block in PVI. PMID:26940476

  16. Dronedarone for atrial fibrillation: a new therapeutic agent

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Pawan D; Bhuriya, Rohit; Patel, Dipal D; Arora, Bhaskar L; Singh, Param P; Arora, Rohit R

    2009-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common of the serious cardiac rhythm disturbances and is responsible for substantial morbidity and mortality. Amiodarone is currently one of the most widely used and most effective antiarrhythmic agents for atrial fibrillation. But during chronic usage amiodarone can cause some serious extra cardiac adverse effects, including effects on the thyroid. Dronedarone is a newer therapeutic agent with a structural resemblance to amiodarone, with two molecular changes, and with a better side effect profile. Dronedarone is a multichannel blocker and, like amiodarone, possesses both a rhythm and a rate control property in atrial fibrillation. The US Food and Drug Administration approved dronedarone for atrial fibrillation on July 2, 2009. In this review, we discuss the role of dronedarone in atrial fibrillation. PMID:19688104

  17. Global burden of atrial fibrillation in developed and developing nations.

    PubMed

    Chugh, Sumeet S; Roth, Gregory A; Gillum, Richard F; Mensah, George A

    2014-03-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common heart rhythm disorder in the world, with major public health impact especially due to increased risk of stroke and hospitalizations. The recently published results on epidemiology of atrial fibrillation from the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study confirm the existence of a significant and progressive worldwide increase in the burden of atrial fibrillation. However, there appears to be regional variation in both the burden of atrial fibrillation and availability of epidemiological data regarding this condition. In this review, the authors identify issues that are unique to the developed versus developing regions and outline a road map for possible approaches to surveillance, management, and prevention of atrial fibrillation at the global level. PMID:25432121

  18. [Innovative techniques in atrial fibrillation therapy].

    PubMed

    Metzner, A; Wissner, E; Fink, T; Ouyang, F; Kuck, K-H

    2015-02-01

    Pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) is the established cornerstone in most catheter-based ablation treatment strategies for atrial fibrillation (AF); however, it is still a challenge to create contiguous, transmural and permanent ablation lesions using radiofrequency current in combination with three-dimensional mapping systems. To overcome these limitations, innovative spiral mapping and ablation catheters as well as balloon-based ablation catheters incorporating alternative energy sources, such as cryoenergy and laser were developed and evaluated and have proved their potential for safe and clinically effective PVI. In addition, novel ablation strategies, such as identification and ablation of AF-inducing foci and/or AF-perpetuating rotors using either endocardial or epicardial mapping systems were introduced and are currently under clinical evaluation. The identification and modulation of atrial ganglionic plexi (GP) and, therefore, of the autonomous nervous system is another additive ablation approach which requires further clinical evaluation. PMID:25585587

  19. Epicardial adipose tissue and atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Hatem, Stéphane N; Sanders, Prashanthan

    2014-05-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most frequent cardiac arrhythmia in clinical practice. AF is often associated with profound functional and structural alterations of the atrial myocardium that compose its substrate. Recently, a relationship between the thickness of epicardial adipose tissue (EAT) and the incidence and severity of AF has been reported. Adipose tissue is a biologically active organ regulating the metabolism of neighbouring organs. It is also a major source of cytokines. In the heart, EAT is contiguous with the myocardium without fascia boundaries resulting in paracrine effects through the release of adipokines. Indeed, Activin A, which is produced in abundance by EAT during heart failure or diabetes, shows a marked fibrotic effect on the atrial myocardium. The infiltration of adipocytes into the atrial myocardium could also disorganize the depolarization wave front favouring micro re-entry circuits and local conduction block. Finally, EAT contains progenitor cells in abundance and therefore could be a source of myofibroblasts producing extracellular matrix. The study on the role played by adipose tissue in the pathogenesis of AF is just starting and is highly likely to uncover new biomarkers and therapeutic targets for AF. PMID:24648445

  20. Science Linking Pulmonary Veins and Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Mahida, Saagar; Sacher, Frederic; Derval, Nicolas; Berte, Benjamin; Yamashita, Seigo; Hooks, Darren; Denis, Arnaud; Amraoui, Sana; Hocini, Meleze; Haissaguerre, Michel; Jais, Pierre

    2015-01-01

    Over the past few decades, significant progress has been made in understanding the mechanistic basis of atrial fibrillation (AF). One of the most important discoveries in this context has been that pulmonary veins (PV) play a prominent role in the pathogenesis of AF. PV isolation has since become the most widely used technique for treatment of paroxysmal AF. Multiple studies have demonstrated that the electrophysiological and anatomical characteristics of PVs create a proarrhythmogenic substrate. The following review discusses the mechanistic links between PVs and AF. PMID:26835098

  1. Science Linking Pulmonary Veins and Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Mahida, Saagar; Sacher, Frederic; Derval, Nicolas; Berte, Benjamin; Yamashita, Seigo; Hooks, Darren; Denis, Arnaud; Amraoui, Sana; Hocini, Meleze; Haissaguerre, Michel; Jais, Pierre

    2015-05-01

    Over the past few decades, significant progress has been made in understanding the mechanistic basis of atrial fibrillation (AF). One of the most important discoveries in this context has been that pulmonary veins (PV) play a prominent role in the pathogenesis of AF. PV isolation has since become the most widely used technique for treatment of paroxysmal AF. Multiple studies have demonstrated that the electrophysiological and anatomical characteristics of PVs create a proarrhythmogenic substrate. The following review discusses the mechanistic links between PVs and AF. PMID:26835098

  2. Atrioventricular Junction Ablation for Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Patel, Dilesh; Daoud, Emile G

    2016-04-01

    Atrioventricular junction (AVJ) ablation is an effective therapy in patients with symptomatic atrial fibrillation who are intolerant to or unsuccessfully managed with rhythm control or medical rate control strategies. A drawback is that the procedure mandates a pacing system. Overall, the safety and efficacy of AVJ ablation is high with a majority of the patients reporting significant improvement in symptoms and quality-of-life measures. Risk of sudden cardiac death after device implantation is low, especially with an appropriate postprocedure pacing rate. Mortality benefit with AVJ ablation has been shown in patients with heart failure and cardiac resynchronization therapy devices. PMID:26968669

  3. Atrial fibrillation: state of the art.

    PubMed

    Hasun, Matthias; Gatterer, Eduard; Weidinger, Franz

    2014-11-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is by far the most frequent heart rhythm disorder and is associated with a significantly increased risk of stroke, heart failure and death. Despite improvements in prevention and treatment, the prognosis has not changed significantly. To use new and promising pharmacological and interventional concepts for thromboembolic prophylaxis and treatment of AF, as well as prevention of recurrence, patient compliance has to be improved, physicians have to be trained and experience hast to be gained. A consistently carried 'anticoagulation pass' might be a promising piece of the puzzle. PMID:25409952

  4. Atrioventricular junction ablation for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Patel, Dilesh; Daoud, Emile G

    2014-11-01

    Atrioventricular junction (AVJ) ablation is an effective therapy in patients with symptomatic atrial fibrillation who are intolerant to or unsuccessfully managed with rhythm control or medical rate control strategies. A drawback is that the procedure mandates a pacing system. Overall, the safety and efficacy of AVJ ablation is high with a majority of the patients reporting significant improvement in symptoms and quality-of-life measures. Risk of sudden cardiac death after device implantation is low, especially with an appropriate postprocedure pacing rate. Mortality benefit with AVJ ablation has been shown in patients with heart failure and cardiac resynchronization therapy devices. PMID:25443238

  5. Minimally Invasive Atrial Fibrillation Surgery: Hybrid Approach

    PubMed Central

    Beller, Jared P.; Downs, Emily A.; Ailawadi, Gorav

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is a challenging pathologic process. There continues to be a great need for the development of a reproducible, durable cure when medical management has failed. An effective, minimally invasive, sternal-sparing intervention without the need for cardiopulmonary bypass is a promising treatment approach. In this article, we describe a hybrid technique being refined at our center that combines a thoracoscopic epicardial surgical approach with an endocardial catheter-based procedure. We also discuss our results and review the literature describing this unique treatment approach. PMID:27127561

  6. Apixaban and atrial fibrillation: no clear advantage.

    PubMed

    2014-02-01

    For the prevention of thromboembolic events in patients with atrial fibrillation and a high thrombotic risk, the standard treatment is warfarin, an anticoagulant. Dabigatran, a thrombin inhibitor, is the alternative when warfarin fails to maintain the INR within the therapeutic range. Patients with a moderate thrombotic risk may receive either warfarin or low-dose aspirin. Apixaban, a factor Xa inhibitor anticoagulant, has been authorised in the European Union for use in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation and a moderate or high risk of thrombosis. In a double-blind, randomised non-inferiority trial versus warfarin in 18 201 patients, the incidence of stroke or systemic embolism was lower in the apixaban group (average 1.3 versus 1.6 events per 100 patient-years; p = 0.01). This difference was mainly due to a lower incidence of haemorrhagic stroke and did not result in a clear decline in mortality. In addition, these results are undermined by multiple methodological flaws. Clinical evaluation included no trials comparing apixaban with dabigatran; any indirect comparison would be risky given the poor quality of the clinical assessment of both drugs in atrial fibrillation. A double-blind, randomised trial including 5598 patients compared apixaban with aspirin but provided little information on these options in patients with a moderate risk of thrombosis, as most patients were at high risk. In clinical trials, major bleeding events were less frequent with apixaban than with warfarin (average 2.1 versus 3.1 events per 100 patient-years), but they were more frequent with apixaban than with aspirin (1.4 versus 0.9 events per 100 patient-years). In 2013, there is no way of monitoring the anticoagulant activity of apixaban in routine clinical practice, and there is no antidote in case of overdose; the same is true for dabigatran. Apixaban is a substrate for various cytochrome P450 isoenzymes and for P-glycoprotein, creating a risk of multiple drug

  7. Antithrombotic and Anticoagulant Therapy for Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Dzeshka, Mikhail S; Lip, Gregory Y H

    2016-04-01

    As atrial fibrillation (AF) substantially increases the risk of stroke and other thromboembolic events, most AF patients require appropriate antithrombotic prophylaxis. Oral anticoagulation (OAC) with either dose-adjusted vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) (eg, warfarin) or non-VKA oral anticoagulants (eg, dabigatran, apixaban, rivaroxaban) can be used for this purpose unless contraindicated. Therefore, risk assessment of stroke and bleeding is an obligatory part of AF management, and risk has to be weighed individually. Antiplatelet drugs (eg, aspirin and clopidogrel) are inferior to OAC, both alone and in combination, with a comparable risk of bleeding events. PMID:26968670

  8. Cardiometabolic risk factors and atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Menezes, Arthur R; Lavie, Carl J; Dinicolantonio, James J; O'Keefe, James; Morin, Daniel P; Khatib, Sammy; Abi-Samra, Freddy M; Messerli, Franz H; Milani, Richard V

    2013-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia worldwide; it is a significant risk factor for stroke and embolization, and has an impact on cardiac function. Despite its impact on morbidity and mortality, our understanding of the etiology and pathophysiology of this disease process is still incomplete. Over the past several decades, there has been evidence to suggest that AF has a significant correlation with metabolic syndrome (MetS). Furthermore, AF appears to be more closely related to specific components of MetS compared with others. This article provides an overview of the various components of MetS and their impact on AF. PMID:24448257

  9. NASA's First Atrial Fibrillation Case - Deke Slayton

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tarver, William J.

    2010-01-01

    Concerns about heart dysrhythmia have been present since the earliest days of the US manned space program. While information about an astronaut's health is general kept private, one of the original seven American astronaut's health status was played out in a very public forum. Donald "Deke" Slayton was removed from the second manned space flight when it was discovered he had idiopathic atrial fibrillation. Referencing the original medical documents, details of how this was discovered and managed from the medical perspective will be reviewed. This is NASA's first heart dysrhythmia case in an astronaut and it proves quite interesting when placed in historic perspective.

  10. [Progress of anticoagulation therapy in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Hernández Olmedo, Miguel; Suárez Fernández, Carmen

    2015-08-01

    Atrial fibrillation is currently a very prevalent disease and it represents one of the most common causes of disabling stroke. Antithrombotic therapies have reduced the incidence of this complication although they pose many limitations and difficulties. As a result, a large number of high risk patients do not receive an appropriate treatment. In recent years, four new oral anticoagulants (NOAC) with relevant advantages in comparison to vitaminK antagonists have been released. Four large phaseiii clinical trials have demonstrated that NOAC are at least as safe and efficacious as warfarin in stroke prevention in non-valve atrial fibrillation patients with moderate-high thrombotic risk, being their main advantage the reduction in intracranial hemorrhage. The arrival of these drugs has caused great expectations in the management of these patients but also new doubts. Lacking data in some subgroups of frail patients, the absence of specific antidotes available and specially their high cost represent nowadays the main limitations for their generalization. PMID:25192579

  11. P-wave Variability and Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Censi, Federica; Corazza, Ivan; Reggiani, Elisa; Calcagnini, Giovanni; Mattei, Eugenio; Triventi, Michele; Boriani, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    The analysis of P-wave template has been widely used to extract indices of Atrial Fibrillation (AF) risk stratification. The aim of this paper was to assess the potential of the analysis of the P-wave variability over time in patients suffering from atrial fibrillation. P-wave features extracted from P-wave template together with novel indices of P-wave variability have been estimated in a population of patients suffering from persistent AF and compared to those extracted from control subjects. We quantify the P-wave variability over time using three algorithms and we extracted three novel indices: one based on the cross-correlation coefficients among the P-waves (Cross-Correlation Index, CCI), one associated to variation in amplitude of the P-waves (Amplitude Dispersion Index, ADI), one sensible to the phase shift among P-waves (Warping Index, WI). The control group resulted to be characterized by shorter P-wave duration and by a less amount of fragmentation and variability, respect to AF patients. The parameter CCI shows the highest sensitivity (97.3%) and a good specificity (95%). PMID:27225709

  12. Oxidized CaMKII Triggers Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Purohit, Anil; Rokita, Adam G.; Guan, Xiaoqun; Chen, Biyi; Koval, Olha M.; Voigt, Niels; Neef, Stefan; Sowa, Thomas; Gao, Zhan; Luczak, Elizabeth D.; Stefansdottir, Hrafnhildur; Behunin, Andrew C.; Li, Na; El-Accaoui, Ramzi N.; Yang, Baoli; Swaminathan, Paari Dominic; Weiss, Robert M.; Wehrens, Xander H.T.; Song, Long-Sheng; Dobrev, Dobromir; Maier, Lars S.; Anderson, Mark E.

    2013-01-01

    Background Atrial fibrillation is a growing public health problem without adequate therapies. Angiotensin II (Ang II) and reactive oxygen species (ROS) are validated risk factors for atrial fibrillation (AF) in patients, but the molecular pathway(s) connecting ROS and AF is unknown. The Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) has recently emerged as a ROS activated proarrhythmic signal, so we hypothesized that oxidized CaMKIIδ(ox-CaMKII) could contribute to AF. Methods and Results We found ox-CaMKII was increased in atria from AF patients compared to patients in sinus rhythm and from mice infused with Ang II compared with saline. Ang II treated mice had increased susceptibility to AF compared to saline treated WT mice, establishing Ang II as a risk factor for AF in mice. Knock in mice lacking critical oxidation sites in CaMKIIδ (MM-VV) and mice with myocardial-restricted transgenic over-expression of methionine sulfoxide reductase A (MsrA TG), an enzyme that reduces ox-CaMKII, were resistant to AF induction after Ang II infusion. Conclusions Our studies suggest that CaMKII is a molecular signal that couples increased ROS with AF and that therapeutic strategies to decrease ox-CaMKII may prevent or reduce AF. PMID:24030498

  13. The Surgical Treatment of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Jeanne; Bailey, Marci S.; Damiano, Ralph J.

    2009-01-01

    Summary For two decades, the cut-and-sew Cox-Maze III procedure was the gold standard for the surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation (AF), and proved to be effective at eliminating AF. The incidence of late stroke was also very low. However, this procedure was not widely adopted due to its complexity and technical difficulty. Over the last 5-10 years, the introduction of new ablation technology has led to the development of the Cox-Maze IV procedure, as well as, more limited lesion sets, with the ultimate goal of performing a minimally-invasive lesion set on the beating heart, without the need for cardiopulmonary bypass. This review summarizes the current state of the art and future directions in the stand-alone surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation. The hope is that as more is learned about the mechanisms of AF and with better preoperative diagnostic technologies capable of precisely locating the areas responsible for AF, it will become possible to tailor specific lesion sets and ablation modalities to individual patients, making the surgical treatment of AF available to a larger population of patients. PMID:19631907

  14. Drier Air, Lower Temperatures, and Triggering of Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Jennifer L.; Link, Mark S.; Luttmann-Gibson, Heike; Laden, Francine; Schwartz, Joel; Wessler, Benjamin S.; Mittleman, Murray A.; Gold, Diane R.; Dockery, Douglas W.

    2015-01-01

    Background The few previous studies on the onset of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and meteorologic conditions have focused on outdoor temperature and hospital admissions, but hospital admissions are a crude indicator of atrial fibrillation incidence, and studies have found other weather measures in addition to temperature to be associated with cardiovascular outcomes. Methods Two hundred patients with dual chamber implantable cardioverter-defibrillators were enrolled and followed prospectively from 2006 to 2010 for new onset episodes of atrial fibrillation. The date and time of arrhythmia episodes documented by the implanted cardioverter-defibrillators were linked to meteorologic data and examined using a case-crossover analysis. We evaluated associations with outdoor temperature, apparent temperature, air pressure, and three measures of humidity (relative humidity, dew point, and absolute humidity). Results Of the 200 enrolled patients, 49 patients experienced 328 atrial fibrillation episodes lasting ≥30 seconds. Lower temperatures in the prior 48 hours were positively associated with atrial fibrillation. Lower absolute humidity (ie, drier air) had the strongest and most consistent association: each 0.5 g/m3 decrease in the prior 24 hours increased the odds of atrial fibrillation by 4% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0%, 7%) and by 5% (95% CI: 2%, 8%) for exposure in the prior 2 hours. Results were similar for dew point but slightly weaker. Conclusions Recent exposure to drier air and lower temperatures were associated with the onset of atrial fibrillation among patients with known cardiac disease, supporting the hypothesis that meteorologic conditions trigger acute cardiovascular episodes. PMID:25756220

  15. Bolus injection of acetylcholine terminates atrial fibrillation in rats.

    PubMed

    Fleidervish, Ilya A; Goldberg, Yuri; Ovsyshcher, I Eli

    2008-01-28

    It is well established that a tonic increase in the availability of the atrial muscarinic K(+) channels, either by enhanced vagal tone or by steady infusion of a low-dose of cholinergic or adenosine receptor agonists, promotes the genesis of atrial fibrillation. Here, we aimed to test the hypothesis that bolus administration of a muscarinic receptor agonist would destabilize and terminate atrial arrhythmia by uniformly and transiently activating K(+) channels throughout the atria, and that if the agonist was rapidly hydrolysable, it would dissipate before the more tonic, pro-arrhythmic effects could take hold. The episodes of untreated atrial fibrillation, induced in anesthetized rats by programmed electrical stimulation via trans-esophageal bipolar catheter, lasted on average 8.6+/-2.2 min (n=32). Intravenous injection of a model hydrolysable muscarinic agonist, acetylcholine (0.2 mg/kg body weight), converted atrial fibrillation into sinus rhythm within 8.4+/-1.9 s (n=10, P<0.05). The termination of an atrial fibrillation episode was always accompanied by transient bradycardia; the sinus rhythm gradually accelerated and reached pre-atrial fibrillation values within 10-20 s of injection. In conclusion, our evidence indicates that bolus administration of rapidly hydrolysable muscarinic agonist could be an effective way to pharmacologically terminate atrial fibrillation and restore sinus rhythm. PMID:18078927

  16. Minimally invasive surgery for atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Suwalski, Piotr

    2013-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) remains the most common cardiac arrhythmia, affecting nearly 2% of the general population worldwide. Minimally invasive surgical ablation remains one of the most dynamically evolving fields of modern cardiac surgery. While there are more than a dozen issues driving this development, two seem to play the most important role: first, there is lack of evidence supporting percutaneous catheter based approach to treat patients with persistent and long-standing persistent AF. Paucity of this data offers surgical community unparalleled opportunity to challenge guidelines and change indications for surgical intervention. Large, multicenter prospective clinical studies are therefore of utmost importance, as well as honest, clear data reporting. Second, a collaborative methodology started a long-awaited debate on a Heart Team approach to AF, similar to the debate on coronary artery disease and transcatheter valves. Appropriate patient selection and tailored treatment options will most certainly result in better outcomes and patient satisfaction, coupled with appropriate use of always-limited institutional resources. The aim of this review, unlike other reviews of minimally invasive surgical ablation, is to present medical professionals with two distinctly different, approaches. The first one is purely surgical, Standalone surgical isolation of the pulmonary veins using bipolar energy source with concomitant amputation of the left atrial appendage—a method of choice in one of the most important clinical trials on AF—The Atrial Fibrillation Catheter Ablation Versus Surgical Ablation Treatment (FAST) Trial. The second one represents the most complex approach to this problem: a multidisciplinary, combined effort of a cardiac surgeon and electrophysiologist. The Convergent Procedure, which includes both endocardial and epicardial unipolar ablation bonds together minimally invasive endoscopic surgery with electroanatomical mapping, to deliver best of

  17. Minimally invasive surgery for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Zembala, Michael O; Suwalski, Piotr

    2013-11-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) remains the most common cardiac arrhythmia, affecting nearly 2% of the general population worldwide. Minimally invasive surgical ablation remains one of the most dynamically evolving fields of modern cardiac surgery. While there are more than a dozen issues driving this development, two seem to play the most important role: first, there is lack of evidence supporting percutaneous catheter based approach to treat patients with persistent and long-standing persistent AF. Paucity of this data offers surgical community unparalleled opportunity to challenge guidelines and change indications for surgical intervention. Large, multicenter prospective clinical studies are therefore of utmost importance, as well as honest, clear data reporting. Second, a collaborative methodology started a long-awaited debate on a Heart Team approach to AF, similar to the debate on coronary artery disease and transcatheter valves. Appropriate patient selection and tailored treatment options will most certainly result in better outcomes and patient satisfaction, coupled with appropriate use of always-limited institutional resources. The aim of this review, unlike other reviews of minimally invasive surgical ablation, is to present medical professionals with two distinctly different, approaches. The first one is purely surgical, Standalone surgical isolation of the pulmonary veins using bipolar energy source with concomitant amputation of the left atrial appendage-a method of choice in one of the most important clinical trials on AF-The Atrial Fibrillation Catheter Ablation Versus Surgical Ablation Treatment (FAST) Trial. The second one represents the most complex approach to this problem: a multidisciplinary, combined effort of a cardiac surgeon and electrophysiologist. The Convergent Procedure, which includes both endocardial and epicardial unipolar ablation bonds together minimally invasive endoscopic surgery with electroanatomical mapping, to deliver best of the

  18. Atrial fibrillation: effects beyond the atrium?

    PubMed Central

    Wijesurendra, Rohan S.; Casadei, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained clinical arrhythmia and is associated with significant morbidity, mostly secondary to heart failure and stroke, and an estimated two-fold increase in premature death. Efforts to increase our understanding of AF and its complications have focused on unravelling the mechanisms of electrical and structural remodelling of the atrial myocardium. Yet, it is increasingly recognized that AF is more than an atrial disease, being associated with systemic inflammation, endothelial dysfunction, and adverse effects on the structure and function of the left ventricular myocardium that may be prognostically important. Here, we review the molecular and in vivo evidence that underpins current knowledge regarding the effects of human or experimental AF on the ventricular myocardium. Potential mechanisms are explored including diffuse ventricular fibrosis, focal myocardial scarring, and impaired myocardial perfusion and perfusion reserve. The complex relationship between AF, systemic inflammation, as well as endothelial/microvascular dysfunction and the effects of AF on ventricular calcium handling and oxidative stress are also addressed. Finally, consideration is given to the clinical implications of these observations and concepts, with particular reference to rate vs. rhythm control. PMID:25587048

  19. Detection of occult paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Petrėnas, Andrius; Sörnmo, Leif; Lukoševičius, Arūnas; Marozas, Vaidotas

    2015-04-01

    This work introduces a novel approach to the detection of brief episodes of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF). The proposed detector is based on four parameters which characterize RR interval irregularity, P-wave absence, f-wave presence, and noise level, of which the latter three are determined from a signal produced by an echo state network. The parameters are used for fuzzy logic classification where the decisions involve information on prevailing signal quality; no training is required. The performance is evaluated on a large set of test signals with brief episodes of PAF. The results show that episodes with as few as five beats can be reliably detected with an accuracy of 0.88, compared to 0.82 for a detector based on rhythm information only (the coefficient of sample entropy); this difference in accuracy increases when atrial premature beats are present. The results also show that the performance remains essentially unchanged at noise levels up to [Formula: see text] RMS. It is concluded that the combination of information on ventricular activity, atrial activity, and noise leads to substantial improvement when detecting brief episodes of PAF. PMID:25502852

  20. Atrial Cardiopathy: A Broadened Concept of Left Atrial Thromboembolism Beyond Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Kamel, Hooman; Okin, Peter M.; Longstreth, W. T.; Elkind, Mitchell S.V.; Soliman, Elsayed Z.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) has long been associated with a heightened risk of ischemic stroke and systemic thromboembolism, but recent data require a re-evaluation of our understanding of the nature of this relationship. New findings about the temporal connection between AF and stroke, alongside evidence linking markers of left atrial abnormalities with stroke in the absence of apparent AF, suggest that left atrial thromboembolism may occur even without AF. These observations undermine the hypothesis that the dysrhythmia that defines AF is necessary and sufficient to cause thromboembolism. In this commentary, we instead suggest that the substrate for thromboembolism may often be the anatomic and physiological atrial derangements associated with AF. Therefore, our understanding of cardioembolic stroke may be more complete if we shift our representation of its origin from AF to the concept of atrial cardiopathy. PMID:26021638

  1. [Obesity as a risk factor for atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Duraj, Iwona; Broncel, Marlena

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) and obesity is a growing problem of public health both in Poland and in the whole world. AF risk factors may be summarized as elderliness, male sex, smoking, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, coronary heart disease, heart failure, valvular heart disease, cardiac surgery. Once obesity is an independent, potentially modifiable risk factor for AF. The connection between obesity and atrial fibrillation is very up-to-date because of incremental prevalence, almost epidemic of obesity in the whole world. The probability of AF among obese patients increases with concomitant obstructive sleep apnea. Regardless many researches it hasn't been assessed yet how obesity itself predisposes to AF. It could be an effect of change in the atrial anatomy, the rise of atrial pressure, mechanical stretch, interstitial atrial fibrosis and disruption of atrial electric integrity. A great role is ascribed to inflammation, especially proinflammatory cytokines increased by adipocites of left atrial epicardial adiposity. PMID:26891428

  2. [Prophylaxis of thromboembolism in atrial fibrillation: new oral anticoagulants and left atrial appendage closure].

    PubMed

    Zeus, Tobias; Kelm, Malte; Bode, Christoph

    2015-08-01

    Thrombo-embolic prophylaxis is a key element within the therapy of atrial fibrillation/atrial flutter. Besides new oral anticoagulants the concept of left atrial appendage occlusion has approved to be a good alternative option, especially in patients with increased risk of bleeding. PMID:26261929

  3. Who Is at Risk for Atrial Fibrillation (AF or AFib)?

    MedlinePlus

    ... with heart disease, including valve problems , hypertrophic cardiomyopathy , acute coronary syndrome , Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome and history of heart attack . Additionally, atrial fibrillation is the most common complication ...

  4. Surgical Treatment of Concomitant Atrial Fibrillation: Focus onto Atrial Contractility

    PubMed Central

    Loardi, Claudia; Alamanni, Francesco; Galli, Claudia; Naliato, Moreno; Veglia, Fabrizio; Zanobini, Marco; Pepi, Mauro

    2015-01-01

    Background. Maze procedure aims at restoring sinus rhythm (SR) and atrial contractility (AC). This study evaluated multiple aspects of AC recovery and their relationship with SR regain after ablation. Methods. 122 mitral and fibrillating patients underwent radiofrequency Maze. Rhythm check and echocardiographic control of biatrial contractility were performed at 3, 6, 12, and 24 months postoperatively. A multivariate Cox analysis of risk factors for absence of AC recuperation was applied. Results. At 2-years follow-up, SR was achieved in 79% of patients. SR-AC coexistence increased from 76% until 98%, while biatrial contraction detection augmented from 84 to 98% at late stage. Shorter preoperative arrhythmia duration was the only common predictor of SR-AC restoring, while pulmonary artery pressure (PAP) negatively influenced AC recuperation. Early AC restoration favored future freedom from arrhythmia recurrence. Minor LA dimensions correlated with improved future A/E value and vice versa. Right atrial (RA) contractility restoring favored better left ventricular (LV) performance and volumes. Conclusions. SR and left AC are two interrelated Maze objectives. Factors associated with arrhythmia “chronic state” (PAP and arrhythmia duration) are negative predictors of procedural success. Our results suggest an association between postoperative LA dimensions and “kick” restoring and an influence of RA contraction onto LV function. PMID:26229956

  5. Novel oral anticoagulants for atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    How, Choon How

    2015-01-01

    Anticoagulation therapy is effective in preventing primary and secondary thromboembolic events due to atrial fibrillation. Warfarin, which was approved by the United States in 1954, was the only long-term oral anticoagulation therapy till the approval of dabigatran in 2010, and of rivaroxaban and other direct factor Xa inhibitors from 2011, forming a group known as novel oral anticoagulants (NOAC). NOAC have fewer food and drug interactions compared to warfarin; hence, the patient will require fewer clinic visits. However, the short half-life of NOAC means that twice-a-day dosing is needed and there is higher risk of a prothrombotic state when doses are missed. Other disadvantages are the lack of long-term data on NOAC, their high cost and the current lack of locally available antidotes. PMID:26702159

  6. Individualising Anticoagulant Therapy in Atrial Fibrillation Patients

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Non-vitamin K antagonist (VKA) oral anticoagulants (NOACs) have emerged as alternatives to VKAs for the prevention of stroke in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. Four NOACS: dabigatran, apixaban, rivaroxaban and edoxaban, have received regulatory approval in Europe from the European Medicines Agency. Numerous factors can influence the decision to prescribe a NOAC, the most important of which are assessment of stroke and bleeding risks. Given the variation in design of the pivotal phase III clinical trials investigating the efficacy and safety of NOACs, and in the absence of head-to-head comparative data, it is impossible to recommend one NOAC over the other. However, NOACS offer the opportunity for individualised therapy based on factors such as renal function, age or patient/doctor preference for once- or twice-daily dosing regimens. Dose reduction of some NOACS should be considered in at-risk patient populations. PMID:27617088

  7. The current approach of atrial fibrillation management

    PubMed Central

    Amin, Anish; Houmsse, Aseel; Ishola, Abiodun; Tyler, Jaret; Houmsse, Mahmoud

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most commonly encountered arrhythmia in clinical practice. Aging populations coupled with improved outcomes for many chronic medical conditions has led to increases in AF diagnoses. AF is also known to be associated with an increased risk of adverse events such as transient ischemic attack, ischemic stroke, systemic embolism, and death. This association is enhanced in select populations with preexisting comorbid conditions such as chronic heart failure. The aim of this review is to highlight the advances in the field of cardiology in the management of AF in both acute and long-term settings. We will also review the evolution of anticoagulation management over the past few years and landmark trials in the development of novel oral anticoagulants (NOACs), reversal agents for new NOACs, nonpharmacological options to anticoagulation therapy, and the role of implantable loop recorder in AF management. PMID:26955600

  8. Surgical ablation devices for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Lall, Shelly C; Damiano, Ralph J

    2007-12-01

    The introduction of ablation technology has revolutionized the surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation (AF). It has greatly simplified surgical approaches and has significantly increased the number of procedures being performed. Various energy sources have been used clinically, including cryoablation, radiofrequency, microwave, laser, and high-frequency ultrasound. The goal of these devices is to create conduction block to either block activation wavefronts or to isolate the triggers of AF. All present devices have been shown to have clinical efficacy in some patients. The devices each have their unique advantages and disadvantages. It is important that surgeons develop accurate dose-response curves for new devices in clinically relevant models on both the arrested and beating heart. This will allow the appropriate use of technology to facilitate AF surgery. PMID:18175210

  9. Advances in Imaging for Atrial Fibrillation Ablation

    PubMed Central

    D'Silva, Andrew; Wright, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    Over the last fifteen years, our understanding of the pathophysiology of atrial fibrillation (AF) has paved the way for ablation to be utilized as an effective treatment option. With the aim of gaining more detailed anatomical representation, advances have been made using various imaging modalities, both before and during the ablation procedure, in planning and execution. Options have flourished from procedural fluoroscopy, electroanatomic mapping systems, preprocedural computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound, and combinations of these technologies. Exciting work is underway in an effort to allow the electrophysiologist to assess scar formation in real time. One advantage would be to lessen the learning curve for what are very complex procedures. The hope of these developments is to improve the likelihood of a successful ablation procedure and to allow more patients access to this treatment. PMID:22091384

  10. The role of rotors in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Krummen, David E; Swarup, Vijay; Narayan, Sanjiv M

    2015-02-01

    Despite significant advances in our understanding of atrial fibrillation (AF) mechanisms in the last 15 years, ablation outcomes remain suboptimal. A potential reason is that many ablation techniques focus on anatomic, rather than patient-specific functional targets for ablation. Panoramic contact mapping, incorporating phase analysis, repolarization and conduction dynamics, and oscillations in AF rate, overcomes many prior difficulties with mapping AF. This approach provides evidence that the mechanisms sustaining human AF are deterministic, largely due to stable electrical rotors and focal sources in either atrium. Ablation of such sources (Focal Impulse and Rotor Modulation: FIRM ablation) has been shown to improve ablation outcome compared with conventional ablation alone; independent laboratories directly targeting stable rotors have shown similar results. Clinical trials examining the role of stand-alone FIRM ablation are in progress. Looking forward, translating insights from patient-specific mapping to evidence-based guidelines and clinical practice is the next challenge in improving patient outcomes in AF management. PMID:25713729

  11. Obstructive Sleep Apnoea and Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ling; Hou, Yuemei; Po, Sunny S

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most prevalent cardiac arrhythmia and is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is common among patients with AF. Growing evidence suggests that OSA is associated with the initiation and maintenance of AF. This association is independent of obesity, body mass index and hypertension. OSA not only promotes initiation of AF but also has a significant negative impact on the treatment of AF. Patients with untreated OSA have a higher AF recurrence rate with drug therapy, electrical cardioversion and catheter ablation. Treatment with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) has been shown to improve AF control in patients with OSA. In this article, we will review and discuss the pathophysiological mechanisms of OSA that may predispose OSA patients to AF as well as the standard and emerging therapies for patients with both OSA and AF. PMID:26835094

  12. Atrial Fibrillation, Cognitive Decline And Dementia

    PubMed Central

    Alonso, Alvaro; Arenas de Larriva, Antonio P.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia. Growing evidence supports a role for AF as a risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia. In this review, we summarize epidemiologic observations linking AF with cognitive outcomes, describe potential mechanisms, and explore the impact of AF treatments on cognitive decline and dementia. Community-based, observational studies show a consistent higher rate of cognitive decline and risk of dementia in persons with AF. These associations are partly due to the increased risk of clinical stroke in AF, but other mechanisms, including incidence of silent cerebral infarcts, microbleeds, and cerebral hypoperfusion, are likely additional contributors. Adequate oral anticoagulation and improved management of the overall cardiovascular risk profile in persons with AF offer the promise of reducing the impact of AF on cognitive decline and dementia. PMID:27547248

  13. The role of rotors in atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Swarup, Vijay; Narayan, Sanjiv M.

    2015-01-01

    Despite significant advances in our understanding of atrial fibrillation (AF) mechanisms in the last 15 years, ablation outcomes remain suboptimal. A potential reason is that many ablation techniques focus on anatomic, rather than patient-specific functional targets for ablation. Panoramic contact mapping, incorporating phase analysis, repolarization and conduction dynamics, and oscillations in AF rate, overcomes many prior difficulties with mapping AF. This approach provides evidence that the mechanisms sustaining human AF are deterministic, largely due to stable electrical rotors and focal sources in either atrium. Ablation of such sources (Focal Impulse and Rotor Modulation: FIRM ablation) has been shown to improve ablation outcome compared with conventional ablation alone; independent laboratories directly targeting stable rotors have shown similar results. Clinical trials examining the role of stand-alone FIRM ablation are in progress. Looking forward, translating insights from patient-specific mapping to evidence-based guidelines and clinical practice is the next challenge in improving patient outcomes in AF management. PMID:25713729

  14. Serum Soluble Semaphorin 4D is Associated with Left Atrial Diameter in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Xiang, Li; You, Tao; Chen, Jianchang; Xu, Weiting; Jiao, Yang

    2015-01-01

    Background The aim of this study was to evaluate the serum soluble semaphorin 4D (sSema4D) in patients with atrial fibrillation and to investigate the relationship of serum sSema4D with left atrial diameter (LAD). Material/Methods We studied a total of 113 patients who were subdivided into paroxysmal and non-paroxysmal (included persistent and permanent) atrial fibrillation groups, respectively. Another 55 subjects without atrial fibrillation were enrolled as the healthy control group. Serum levels of soluble semaphorin 4D (Sema4D) were measured in all subjects using the enzyme-labeled immunosorbent assay method. We also evaluated the coagulation parameters and left atrial diameters. Results Patients with paroxysmal and non-paroxysmal atrial fibrillation had significantly higher sSema4D level compared with controls (8.50±2.19 ng/mL and 9.30±2.28 ng/mL vs. 6.56±1.27 ng/ml, P<0.05). Serum sSema4D concentrations were elevated in patients with non-paroxysmal atrial fibrillation compared to those with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (P<0.001). The level of sSema4D was positively correlated with LAD (r=0.606, P<0.001). Multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed that serum sSema4D, LAD, male sex, heart rate, hypertension, and coronary artery disease were associated with atrial fibrillation (P<0.05). Conclusions Serum sSema4D levels are increased in patients with atrial fibrillation and are independently associated with atrial remodeling. PMID:26417899

  15. Atrial Fibrillation and SCN5A Variants

    PubMed Central

    Savio-Galimberti, Eleonora; Darbar, Dawood

    2014-01-01

    Although atrial fibrillation (AF) is clinically and genetically a highly heterogeneous disease, recent studies suggest that the arrhythmia may arise because of interactions between genetic and acquired risk factors – the so called “double-hit” hypothesis. Genome-wide association studies have identified common AF susceptibility loci, and linkage analysis and candidate gene approaches have identified mutations in genes that encode for cardiac ion channels and signaling proteins; however, most of the heritability of AF still remains unexplained. The voltage-dependent cardiac sodium channel, encoded by SCN5A, conducts the main cardiac inward sodium current (INa) and is responsible for the upstroke of the atrial action potential. Mutations in SCN5A, which encodes the α-subunit of the NaV1.5 channel, have been linked with increased susceptibility to not only AF but also ventricular arrhythmias (long QT syndrome, Brugada syndrome), progressive cardiac conduction disease, and overlap syndromes with mixed arrhythmia phenotypes. Over the last decade, functional characterization of SCN5A mutations by expressing the channel in heterologous expression systems and applying cellular electrophysiological techniques has not only advanced our understanding of molecular mechanisms of AF but also potentially identified a mechanism-based approach to treating this common and morbid condition. PMID:25484998

  16. Atrial Fibrillation Predictors: Importance of the Electrocardiogram.

    PubMed

    German, David M; Kabir, Muammar M; Dewland, Thomas A; Henrikson, Charles A; Tereshchenko, Larisa G

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia in adults and is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Substantial interest has developed in the primary prevention of AF, and thus the identification of individuals at risk for developing AF. The electrocardiogram (ECG) provides a wealth of information, which is of value in predicting incident AF. The PR interval and P wave indices (including P wave duration, P wave terminal force, P wave axis, and other measures of P wave morphology) are discussed with regard to their ability to predict and characterize AF risk in the general population. The predictive value of the QT interval, ECG criteria for left ventricular hypertrophy, and findings of atrial and ventricular ectopy are also discussed. Efforts are underway to develop models that predict AF incidence in the general population; however, at present, little information from the ECG is included in these models. The ECG provides a great deal of information on AF risk and has the potential to contribute substantially to AF risk estimation, but more research is needed. PMID:26523405

  17. Current Hot Potatoes in Atrial Fibrillation Ablation

    PubMed Central

    Roten, Laurent; Derval, Nicolas; Pascale, Patrizio; Scherr, Daniel; Komatsu, Yuki; Shah, Ashok; Ramoul, Khaled; Denis, Arnaud; Sacher, Frédéric; Hocini, Mélèze; Haïssaguerre, Michel; Jaïs, Pierre

    2012-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation has evolved to the treatment of choice for patients with drug-resistant and symptomatic AF. Pulmonary vein isolation at the ostial or antral level usually is sufficient for treatment of true paroxysmal AF. For persistent AF ablation, drivers and perpetuators outside of the pulmonary veins are responsible for AF maintenance and have to be targeted to achieve satisfying arrhythmia-free success rate. Both complex fractionated atrial electrogram (CFAE) ablation and linear ablation are added to pulmonary vein isolation for persistent AF ablation. Nevertheless, ablation failure and necessity of repeat ablations are still frequent, especially after persistent AF ablation. Pulmonary vein reconduction is the main reason for arrhythmia recurrence after paroxysmal and to a lesser extent after persistent AF ablation. Failure of persistent AF ablation mostly is a consequence of inadequate trigger ablation, substrate modification or incompletely ablated or reconducting linear lesions. In this review we will discuss these points responsible for AF recurrence after ablation and review current possibilities on how to overcome these limitations. PMID:22920482

  18. Mitochondrial oxidative stress promotes atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Wenjun; Santulli, Gaetano; Reiken, Steven R.; Yuan, Qi; Osborne, Brent W.; Chen, Bi-Xing; Marks, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    Oxidative stress has been suggested to play a role in the pathogenesis of atrial fibrillation (AF). Indeed, the prevalence of AF increases with age as does oxidative stress. However, the mechanisms linking redox state to AF are not well understood. In this study we identify a link between oxidative stress and aberrant intracellular Ca2+ release via the type 2 ryanodine receptor (RyR2) that promotes AF. We show that RyR2 are oxidized in the atria of patients with chronic AF compared with individuals in sinus rhythm. To dissect the molecular mechanism linking RyR2 oxidation to AF we used two murine models harboring RyR2 mutations that cause intracellular Ca2+ leak. Mice with intracellular Ca2+ leak exhibited increased atrial RyR2 oxidation, mitochondrial dysfunction, reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and AF susceptibility. Both genetic inhibition of mitochondrial ROS production and pharmacological treatment of RyR2 leakage prevented AF. Collectively, our results indicate that alterations of RyR2 and mitochondrial ROS generation form a vicious cycle in the development of AF. Targeting this previously unrecognized mechanism could be useful in developing effective interventions to prevent and treat AF. PMID:26169582

  19. Atrial fibrillation in heart failure: catheter and surgical interventional therapies.

    PubMed

    Rabah, Ali; Wazni, Oussama

    2014-05-01

    Atrial fibrillation and heart failure commonly coexist in the same patient. Each may adversely affect the other. Atrial fibrillation leads to heart failure exacerbation, left ventricular function deterioration and an increase in thrombo-embolic risk. Therapeutic options targeting atrial fibrillation in heart failure patients include pharmacological and non-pharmacological means. Pharmacological therapy is directed at either rate control using nodal blocking agents or rhythm control using anti-arrhythmic agents, of which the options are limited in patients with heart failure. The landmark AF-CHF trial did not show any benefit of rhythm control strategy as opposed to rate control in patients with heart failure and atrial fibrillation. However, patients in this trial as well as in others used mostly amiodarone for rhythm control. This might have negated any positive effects of achieving normal sinus rhythm. Non-pharmacological therapy both for rate and rhythm control is appealing. This includes AV node ablation for rate control, catheter ablation of atrial fibrillation and surgical therapy of atrial fibrillation. This review will address non-pharmacologic treatment of AF in heart failure patients. PMID:24132645

  20. Phrenic Nerve Injury After Catheter Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Sacher, Frederic; Jais, Pierre; Stephenson, Kent; O'Neill, Mark D; Hocini, Meleze; Clementy, Jacques; Stevenson, William G; Haissaguerre, Michel

    2007-01-01

    Phrenic Nerve Injury (PNI) has been well studied by cardiac surgeons. More recently it has been recognized as a potential complication of catheter ablation with a prevalence of 0.11 to 0.48 % after atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation. This review will focus on PNI after AF ablation Anatomical studies have shown a close relationship between the right phrenic nerve and it's proximity to the superior vena cava (SVC), and the antero-inferior part of the right superior pulmonary vein (RSPV). In addition, the proximity of the left phrenic nerve to the left atrial appendage has been well established. Independent of the type of ablation catheter (4mm, 8 mm, irrigated tip, balloon) or energy source used (radiofrequency (RF), ultrasound, cryothermia, and laser); the risk of PNI exists during ablation at the critical areas listed above. Although up to thirty-one percent of patients with PNI after AF ablation remain asymptomatic, dyspnea remain the cardinal symptom and is present in all symptomatic patients. Despite the theoretical risk for significant adverse effect on functional status and quality of life, short-term outcomes from published studies appear favorable with 81% of patients with PNI having a complete recovery after 7 ± 7 months. Conclusion Existing studies have described PNI as an uncommon but avoidable complication in patients undergoing pulmonary vein isolation for AF. Prior to ablation at the SVC, antero-inferior RSPV ostium or the left atrial appendage, pacing should be performed before energy delivery. If phrenic nerve capture is documented, energy delivery should be avoided at this site. Electrophysiologist's vigilance as well as pacing prior to ablation at high risk sites in close proximity to the phrenic nerve are the currently available tools to avoid the complication of PNI. PMID:17235367

  1. Cost effectiveness of therapies for atrial fibrillation. A review.

    PubMed

    Teng, M P; Catherwood, L E; Melby, D P

    2000-10-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common supraventricular tachyarrhythmia encountered in clinical practice, affecting over 5% of persons over the age of 65 years. A common pathophysiological mechanism for arrhythmia development is atrial distention and fibrosis induced by hypertension, coronary artery disease or ventricular dysfunction. Less frequently, atrial fibrillation is caused by mitral stenosis or other provocative factors such as thyrotoxicosis, pericarditis or alcohol intoxication. Depending on the extent of associated cardiovascular disease, atrial fibrillation may produce haemodynamic compromise, or symptoms such as palpitations, fatigue, chest pain or dyspnoea. Arrhythmia-induced atrial stasis can precipitate clot formation and the potential for subsequent thromboembolism. Comprehensive management of atrial fibrillation requires a multifaceted approach directed at controlling symptoms, protecting the patient from ischaemic stroke or peripheral embolism and possible conversion to or maintenance of sinus rhythm. Numerous randomised trials have demonstrated the efficacy of warfarin--and less so aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid)--in reducing the risk of embolic events. Furthermore, therapeutic strategies exist that can favourably modify symptoms by restoring and maintaining sinus rhythm with cardioversion and antiarrhythmic prophylaxis. However, the risks and benefits of various treatments is highly dependent on patient-specific features, emphasising the need for an individualised approach. This article reviews the findings of cost-effectiveness studies published over the past decade that have evaluated different components of treatment strategies for atrial fibrillation. These studies demonstrate the economic attractiveness of acute management options, long term warfarin prophylaxis, telemetry-guided initiation of antiarrhythmic therapy, approaches to restore and maintain sinus rhythm, and the potential role of transoesophageal echocardiographic screening for

  2. The totally thoracoscopic left atrial maze procedure for the treatment of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    van Laar, Charlotte; Geuzebroek, Guillaume S C; Hofman, Frederik N; Van Putte, Bart P

    2016-01-01

    The totally thoracoscopic left atrial maze (TT-maze) is a recent, minimally invasive surgical procedure for the treatment of atrial fibrillation, with promising results in terms of freedom from atrial fibrillation. The TT-maze consists of a bilateral, epicardial pulmonary vein isolation with the creation of a box using radiofrequency and exclusion of the left atrial appendage (LAA). In addition, the box is connected with the base of the LAA and furthermore with the mitral annulus with the so-called trigonum line. In this report, we describe our surgical approach and short-term results. PMID:26993056

  3. Robotic-assisted left atrial ligation for stroke reduction in chronic atrial fibrillation: a case report.

    PubMed

    Kiaii, Bob; McClure, R Scott; Skanes, Alan C; Ross, Ian G; Spouge, Alison R; Swinamer, Stuart; Rayman, Reiza; Bainbridge, Daniel T; Iglesias, Ivan; Novick, Richard J

    2006-01-01

    Patients with atrial fibrillation are at significant risk for sustaining a thromboembolic stroke. More than 90% of thromboemboli form in the left atrial appendage. Ligation of the left atrial appendage to reduce the risk of stroke is often performed in connection with other cardiac surgical procedures. As a stand-alone procedure, however, left atrial ligation has generally been deemed too invasive and has gained little support as an alternative therapeutic option. We report a case of port-access robotic-assisted left atrial ligation as a stand-alone procedure in a patient with chronic atrial fibrillation in whom anticoagulation was a contraindication. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of stand-alone robotic-assisted left atrial ligation in the literature. PMID:16387671

  4. [Treatment of atrial fibrillation using maze procedure by radiofrequency ablation].

    PubMed

    Cai, Z; Sun, G; Du, R

    1997-12-01

    From May 1994 to May 1996, 20 cases of atrial fibrillation were treated by means of Maze procedure by radiofrequenncy ablation, at the same time 19 cases of these patients were complicated with rheumatic heart valve disease and valve replacement operations were perfomned, in the other case atrial septal defect was repaired. Yoshio Kosakai's operation route was adopted in radiofrequency ablation procedure. After operation 16 patients of atrial fibrillation resumed sinus rhythm (80%), in 4 casess of atrial fibrillation sinus rhythm was unsuccessfully restored, two patients remained atrial fibrillation, one patient was of atrial flutter, the other was of nodal rhythm. Short time was needed in radiofrequency ablation Maze procedure, average time increase of aortic clamping was 20.5 minutes, and there was no danger of hemorrhage related to this kinds of Maze procedure. During 7-10 days after operation, there appeared superventricular arrhythmia which might be related to ill-distribution of radiofrequency ablation, and interference of atrial electric activity. PMID:10677989

  5. Reduced kidney function is a risk factor for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Laukkanen, Jari A; Zaccardi, Francesco; Karppi, Jouni; Ronkainen, Kimmo; Kurl, Sudhir

    2016-08-01

    There is limited knowledge on the relationship between kidney function and incidence of atrial fibrillation. Thus, this prospective study was designed to evaluate whether various biomarkers of kidney function are associated to the risk of atrial fibrillation. The study population consisted of 1840 subjects (615 women and 1225 men) aged 61-82 years. Cystatin C- and creatinine-based estimation of glomerular filtration rate (eGFRcys and eGRFcreat , respectively) and urinary albumin/creatinine ratio (ACR) were assessed to investigate their relationship with the risk of atrial fibrillation. During a median follow-up of 3.7 years, a total of 159 incident atrial fibrillation cases occurred. After adjustment for potential confounders, the risk of atrial fibrillation was increased (hazard ratio 2.74, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.56-4.81, P < 0.001) in subjects with reduced kidney function (eGFRcys , 15-59 mL/min per 1.73 m(2) ) compared to subjects with normal kidney function (≥90 mL/min per 1.73 m(2) ). Similar results were also found when comparing the respective groups of subjects defined by their eGRFcreat levels (hazard ratio 2.41, CI 1.09-5.30, P = 0.029). Consistently, subjects with ACR ≥300 mg/g had an increased risk of incident atrial fibrillation (hazard ratio 2.16, CI 1.35-2.82, P < 0.001) compared to those with ACR <30 mg/g. Reduced eGFR and albuminuria were associated with an increased risk of atrial fibrillation. PMID:26780558

  6. Atrial Fibrillation, Neurocognitive Decline and Gene Expression After Cardiopulmonary Bypass

    PubMed Central

    Dalal, Rahul S.; Sabe, Ashraf A.; Elmadhun, Nassrene Y.; Ramlawi, Basel; Sellke, Frank W.

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Atrial fibrillation and neurocognitive decline are common complications after cardiopulmonary bypass. By utilizing genomic microarrays we investigate whether gene expression is associated with postoperative atrial fibrillation and neurocognitive decline. METHODS Twenty one cardiac surgery patients were prospectively matched and underwent neurocognitive assessments pre-operatively and four days postoperatively. The whole blood collected in the pre-cardiopulmonary bypass, 6 hours after-cardiopulmonary bypass, and on the 4th postoperative day was hybridized to Affymetrix Gene Chip U133 Plus 2.0 Microarrays. Gene expression in patients who developed postoperative atrial fibrillation and neurocognitive decline (n=6; POAF+NCD) was compared with gene expression in patients with postoperative atrial fibrillation and normal cognitive function (n=5; POAF+NORM) and patients with sinus rhythm and normal cognitive function (n=10; SR+NORM). Regulated genes were identified using JMP Genomics 4.0 with a false discovery rate of 0.05 and fold change of >1.5 or <-1.5. RESULTS Eleven patients developed postoperative atrial fibrillation. Six of these also developed neurocognitive decline. Of the 12 patients with sinus rhythm, only 2 developed neurocognitive decline. POAF+NCD patients had unique regulation of 17 named genes preoperatively, 60 named genes six hours after cardiopulmonary bypass, and 34 named genes four days postoperatively (P<0.05) compared with normal patients. Pathway analysis demonstrated that these genes are involved in cell death, inflammation, cardiac remodeling and nervous system function. CONCLUSION Patients who developed postoperative atrial fibrillation and neurocognitive decline after cardiopulmonary bypass may have differential genomic responses compared to normal patients and patients with only postoperative atrial fibrillation, suggesting common pathophysiology for these conditions. Further exploration of these genes may provide insight into the

  7. Surgical Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation during Mitral-Valve Surgery

    PubMed Central

    Gillinov, A. Marc; Gelijns, Annetine C.; Parides, Michael K.; DeRose, Joseph J.; Moskowitz, Alan J.; Voisine, Pierre; Ailawadi, Gorav; Bouchard, Denis; Smith, Peter K.; Mack, Michael J.; Acker, Michael A.; Mullen, John C.; Rose, Eric A.; Chang, Helena L.; Puskas, John D.; Couderc, Jean-Philippe; Gardner, Timothy J.; Varghese, Robin; Horvath, Keith A.; Bolling, Steven F.; Michler, Robert E.; Geller, Nancy L.; Ascheim, Deborah D.; Miller, Marissa A.; Bagiella, Emilia; Moquete, Ellen G.; Williams, Paula; Taddei-Peters, Wendy C.; O’Gara, Patrick T.; Blackstone, Eugene H.; Argenziano, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Background Among patients undergoing mitral-valve surgery, 30 to 50% present with atrial fibrillation, which is associated with reduced survival and increased risk of stroke. Surgical ablation of atrial fibrillation has been widely adopted, but evidence regarding its safety and effectiveness is limited. Methods We randomly assigned 260 patients with persistent or long-standing persistent atrial fibrillation who required mitral-valve surgery to undergo either surgical ablation (ablation group) or no ablation (control group) during the mitral-valve operation. Patients in the ablation group underwent further randomization to pulmonary-vein isolation or a biatrial maze procedure. All patients underwent closure of the left atrial appendage. The primary end point was freedom from atrial fibrillation at both 6 months and 12 months (as assessed by means of 3-day Holter monitoring). Results More patients in the ablation group than in the control group were free from atrial fibrillation at both 6 and 12 months (63.2% vs. 29.4%, P<0.001). There was no significant difference in the rate of freedom from atrial fibrillation between patients who underwent pulmonary-vein isolation and those who underwent the biatrial maze procedure (61.0% and 66.0%, respectively; P = 0.60). One-year mortality was 6.8% in the ablation group and 8.7% in the control group (hazard ratio with ablation, 0.76; 95% confidence interval, 0.32 to 1.84; P = 0.55). Ablation was associated with more implantations of a permanent pacemaker than was no ablation (21.5 vs. 8.1 per 100 patient-years, P = 0.01). There were no significant between-group differences in major cardiac or cerebrovascular adverse events, overall serious adverse events, or hospital readmissions. Conclusions The addition of atrial fibrillation ablation to mitral-valve surgery significantly increased the rate of freedom from atrial fibrillation at 1 year among patients with persistent or long-standing persistent atrial fibrillation, but the

  8. Anti-thromboembolic strategies in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Cocco, Giuseppe; Amiet, Philpp; Jerie, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Oral anticoagulation (OAC) is highly effective for stroke prevention in high-risk-patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). AF is also a risk for dementia, and effective OAC reduces the risk of dementia. Up to 30% of patients with AF have a coronary artery disease and antiplatelets are used to avoid thrombotic complications. Patients with AF often have an acute coronary syndrome (ACS) and undergo a percutaneous intervention with stent-implantation. These patients require a triple therapy, i.e. the combination of OAC with dual-antiplatelet therapy. It is obvious that OAC may induce bleeding with potentially deleterious effects on mortality. Even the occurrence of minor bleeding is problematic. The review describes available data on used anti-thromboembolic regimens in patients treated with OAC (vitamin K antagonists and non-vitamin K antagonists) who need a triple therapy (i.e. anticoagulation and antiplatelets). Most data are from patients who were treated for an ACS and cannot be directly extrapolated for patients with AF. The impact of used stents and novel P2Y12 antagonist-antiplatelets and duration of triple therapy is discussed. Often some high-risk patients with AF would need anticoagulation but cannot be given this therapy be-cause of excessive bleeding risks or contraindicating comorbidities: in these patients left atrial appendage closure with an occluding device can be used as an alternative to anti-thromboem-bolic therapy. The unavoidable anti-thromboembolic triple therapy carries a strong potential for bleeding events, which increase mortality. We have many data and several recommendations are offered. Nonetheless, we lack solid data on the best anti-thromboembolic regimen in patients with AF who need anticoagulation and antiplatelets. PMID:26779967

  9. Electrocardiographic Predictors of Incident Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Kaylin T; Vittinghoff, Eric; Dewland, Thomas A; Mandyam, Mala C; Stein, Phyllis K; Soliman, Elsayed Z; Heckbert, Susan R; Marcus, Gregory M

    2016-09-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is likely secondary to multiple different pathophysiological mechanisms that are increasingly but incompletely understood. Motivated by the hypothesis that 3 previously described electrocardiographic predictors of AF identify distinct AF mechanisms, we sought to determine if these electrocardiographic findings independently predict incident disease. Among Cardiovascular Health Study participants without prevalent AF, we determined whether left anterior fascicular block (LAFB), a prolonged QTC, and atrial premature complexes (APCs) each predicted AF after adjusting for each other. We then calculated the attributable risk in the exposed for each electrocardiographic marker. LAFB and QTC intervals were assessed on baseline 12-lead electrocardiogram (n = 4,696). APC count was determined using 24-hour Holter recordings obtained in a random subsample (n = 1,234). After adjusting for potential confounders and each electrocardiographic marker, LAFB (hazard ratio [HR] 2.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.1 to 3.9, p = 0.023), a prolonged QTC (HR 2.5, 95% CI 1.4 to 4.3, p = 0.002), and every doubling of APC count (HR 1.2, 95% CI 1.1 to 1.3, p <0.001) each remained independently predictive of incident AF. The attributable risk of AF in the exposed was 35% (95% CI 13% to 52%) for LAFB, 25% (95% CI 0.6% to 44%) for a prolonged QTC, and 34% (95% CI 26% to 42%) for APCs. In conclusion, in a community-based cohort, 3 previously established electrocardiogram-derived AF predictors were each independently associated with incident AF, suggesting that they may represent distinct mechanisms underlying the disease. PMID:27448684

  10. Comorbidity of atrial fibrillation and heart failure.

    PubMed

    Ling, Liang-Han; Kistler, Peter M; Kalman, Jonathan M; Schilling, Richard J; Hunter, Ross J

    2016-03-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) and heart failure (HF) are evolving epidemics, together responsible for substantial human suffering and health-care expenditure. Ageing, improved cardiovascular survival, and epidemiological transition form the basis for their increasing global prevalence. Although we now have a clear picture of how HF promotes AF, gaps remain in our knowledge of how AF exacerbates or even causes HF, and how the development of HF affects the outcome of patients with AF. New data regarding HF with preserved ejection fraction and its unique relationship with AF suggest a possible role for AF in its aetiology, possibly as a trigger for ventricular fibrosis. Deciding on optimal treatment strategies for patients with both AF and HF is increasingly difficult, given that results from trials of pharmacological rhythm control are arguably obsolete in the age of catheter ablation. Restoring sinus rhythm by catheter ablation seems successful in the medium term and improves HF symptoms, functional capacity, and left ventricular function. Long-term studies to examine the effect on rates of stroke and death are ongoing. Guidelines continue to evolve to keep pace with this rapidly changing field. PMID:26658575

  11. [Treatment of arrhythmia in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Daubert, Jean-Claude; Pavin, Dominique

    2013-02-01

    The initial therapy after onset of atrial fibrillation (AF) should always include adequate antithrombotic treatment and control of the ventricular rate. Depending on the patient's course, this strategy may prove insufficient and may then be supplemented by rhythm control using drugs or interventions. Clinical frustration came by clinical trials that have demonstrated that the strategy of maintaining sinus rhythm has no demonstrable value when compared with the "laissez-faire" approach of leaving AF to a permanent form and controlling ventricular rate. These disappointing findings can be considered as paradoxical when considering the severe complications associated with AF in epidemiological studies. New anti-arrhythmic approaches might offer added value but this is still a matter of debate. Non-pharmacological interventions to prevent AF recurrences or to limit its expression have been substantially developed in the past decade. Ablation techniques, usually done percutaneously using a catheter, have proved successful n the treatment of AF, particularly by reducing the symptomatic burden associated with the arrhythmia, to such an extent that a 'cure' may be achieved in some patients with paroxysmal AF. PMID:23513784

  12. New oral anticoagulants in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Turpie, Alexander G G

    2008-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a major risk factor for stroke. Currently, acetylsalicylic acid (a platelet inhibitor) and vitamin K antagonists (VKAs; oral anticoagulants), including warfarin, are the only approved antithrombotic therapies for stroke prevention in patients with AF. Although effective, VKAs have unpredictable pharmacological effects, requiring regular coagulation monitoring and dose adjustment to maintain effects within the therapeutic range. The clinical development pathway for novel anticoagulants often involves evaluation of efficacy and safety in a short-term indication, such as the prevention of venous thrombo-embolism (VTE), followed by longer-term VTE treatment studies, and finally chronic indications, including stroke prevention studies in patients with AF. The coagulation pathway provides many targets for novel anticoagulants, including Factor Xa (FXa) and Factor IIa (thrombin). Numerous oral, direct FXa inhibitors are in various stages of clinical development, including rivaroxaban, LY517717, YM150, DU-176b, apixaban, and betrixaban, and are anticipated to overcome the limitations of VKAs. Dabigatran is the only oral direct thrombin inhibitor in late-stage development. Studies of these agents for stroke prevention in patients with AF are planned or ongoing. If approved, they may represent the next generation of anticoagulants, by providing new therapeutic options for stroke prevention in patients with AF. PMID:18096568

  13. New developments in anticoagulation for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Usman, M Haris U; Notaro, Lawrence A; Patel, Harsh; Ezekowitz, Michael D

    2008-09-01

    The incidence of stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) is five times greater than that in age-matched controls. Warfarin reduces this incidence by two thirds and is the most effective agent for this indication. However, despite its efficacy, warfarin management is tedious and is useful only in a subsegment of the population who needs anticoagulation and has no contraindications. Many agents are poised to replace warfarin as an effective anticoagulant for stroke prevention in AF. The direct thrombin inhibitor dabigatran is furthest along in clinical development, followed by the factor Xa inhibitors rivaroxaban and apixaban. All these agents seem effective, and none appears mechanistically superior over another. Dabigatran's advantage is that it was tested in two dosages in a phase 3 evaluation based on earlier phase 2 studies in patients with AF, whereas dosage data for the other agents were extrapolated from phase 2 programs for venous thromboembolism prevention. The vitamin K antagonist ATI-5923 offers clinical benefits similar to warfarin's, but with no or fewer drug-drug interactions, potentially greater time in therapeutic range, and probably less need for dose adjustment and laboratory monitoring. It challenges the newer mechanistic agents in efficacy and raises the bar for comparison in future head-to-head trials. Further analysis and clinical trial testing are still needed to determine whether one or all of these agents are effective anticoagulants for stroke prevention in patients with AF. PMID:18814828

  14. Atrial Fibrillation Ablation without Interruption of Anticoagulation.

    PubMed

    Santangeli, Pasquale; Di Biase, Luigi; Sanchez, Javier E; Horton, Rodney; Natale, Andrea

    2011-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) can be cured by pulmonary vein antrum isolation (PVAI) in a substantial proportion of patients. The high efficacy of PVAI is partially undermined by a small but concrete periprocedural risk of complications, such as thromboembolic events and bleeding. A correct management of anticoagulation is essential to prevent such complications. Performing PVAI without interruption of oral anticoagulation has been demonstrated feasible by our group in previous studies. Recently, we reported that continuation of therapeutic warfarin during radiofrequency catheter ablation consistently reduces the risk of periprocedural stroke/transient ischemic attack without increasing the risk of hemorrhagic events. Of note, interrupting warfarin anticoagulation may actually increase the risk of stroke even when bridged with heparin. The latter strategy is also associated with an increased risk of minor bleeding. With regard to major bleeding, we found no significant difference between patients with a therapeutic INR and those who were bridged with heparin. Therefore, continuation of therapeutic warfarin during ablation of AF appears to be the best anticoagulation strategy. In this paper we summarize our experience with AF ablation without interruption of anticoagulation. PMID:21577267

  15. Lone atrial fibrillation: does it exist?

    PubMed

    Wyse, D George; Van Gelder, Isabelle C; Ellinor, Patrick T; Go, Alan S; Kalman, Jonathan M; Narayan, Sanjiv M; Nattel, Stanley; Schotten, Ulrich; Rienstra, Michiel

    2014-05-01

    The historical origin of the term "lone atrial fibrillation" (AF) predates by 60 years our current understanding of the pathophysiology of AF, the multitude of known etiologies for AF, and our ability to image and diagnose heart disease. The term was meant to indicate AF in patients for whom subsequent investigations could not demonstrate heart disease, but for many practitioners has become synonymous with "idiopathic AF." As the list of heart diseases has expanded and diagnostic techniques have improved, the prevalence of lone AF has fallen. The legacy of the intervening years is that definitions of lone AF in the literature are inconsistent so that studies of lone AF are not comparable. Guidelines provide a vague definition of lone AF but do not provide direction about how much or what kind of imaging and other testing are necessary to exclude heart disease. There has been an explosion in the understanding of the pathophysiology of AF in the last 20 years in particular. Nevertheless, there are no apparently unique mechanisms for AF in patients categorized as having lone AF. In addition, the term "lone AF" is not invariably useful in making treatment decisions, and other tools for doing so have been more thoroughly and carefully validated. It is, therefore, recommended that use of the term "lone AF" be avoided. PMID:24530673

  16. Predicting atrial fibrillation and its complications

    PubMed Central

    Alonso, Alvaro; Norby, Faye L.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia associated with an increased risk of stroke and other complications. Identifying individuals at higher risk of developing AF in the community is now possible using validated predictive models that take into account clinical variables and circulating biomarkers. These models have shown adequate performance in racially and ethnically diverse populations. Similarly, risk stratification schemes predict incidence of ischemic stroke in persons with AF, assisting clinicians and patients in decisions regarding oral anticoagulation use. Complementary schemes have been developed to predict the risk of bleeding in AF patients taking vitamin K antagonists. However, major gaps in our ability to predict AF and its complications exist. Additional research should refine models for AF prediction and determine their value to improve population health and clinical outcomes, advance our ability to predict stroke and other complications in AF patients, and develop predictive models for bleeding events and other adverse effects in patients using non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants. PMID:27008924

  17. Novel anticoagulants in atrial fibrillation stroke prevention

    PubMed Central

    DiNicolantonio, James J; Topping, Taylor J; Wee, Benjamin

    2012-01-01

    This review article evaluates novel oral anticoagulants in comparison with warfarin for thromboembolism prophylaxis in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). AF is the most frequently diagnosed arrhythmia in the United States. The most serious side effect of AF is stroke. Warfarin has several decades of proven efficacy in AF-related stroke prevention but the drug’s numerous drawbacks make its implementation difficult for practitioners and patients. The difficulties of warfarin have prompted the development of alternative anticoagulants for AF-related stroke prevention with better efficacy, safety, and convenience. The oral direct thrombin inhibitor, dabigatran, and the oral factor Xa inhibitors, rivaroxaban and apixaban, have been evaluated in a large phase III trial. Dabigatran, rivaroxaban and apixaban were shown to be noninferior compared with warfarin in the prevention of stroke. Dabigatran and apixaban were found to be statistically superior to warfarin. All three may also have a better safety profile than warfarin. In conclusion, novel anticoagulants have a different pharmacologic profile compared with warfarin that may eliminate many of the treatment inconveniences. Practitioners must also be aware of the disadvantages these new drugs possess when choosing a management strategy for their patients. Drug selection may become clearer as these new drugs are used more extensively. PMID:23251773

  18. Balloon Devices for Atrial Fibrillation Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Metzner, Andreas; Lin, Tina; Ouyang, Feifan; Kuck, Karl-Heinz

    2015-01-01

    Ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF) is an established treatment option for symptomatic patients refractory to antiarrhythmic medication. In patients with paroxysmal AF, ablation can be offered as first-line therapy when performed in an experienced centre. The accepted cornerstone for all ablation strategies is isolation of the pulmonary veins. However, it is still challenging to achieve contiguous, transmural, permanent lesions using radio-frequency current (RFC) based catheters in conjunction with a three-dimensional mapping system and the learning curve remains long. These limitations have kindled interest in developing and evaluating novel catheter designs that incorporate alternative energy sources. Novel catheters include balloon-based ablation systems, incorporating different energy modalities such as laser (Heartlight™, CardioFocus, Marlborough, MA, US), RFC (Hot Balloon Catheter, Hayama Arrhythmia Institute, Kanagawa, Japan) and cryo-energy (ArcticFront, Medtronic, Inc., Minneapolis, MN, US). While the cryoballoon (CB) and the radiofrequency hot balloon (RHB) are single-shot devices, the endoscopic ablation system (EAS) allows for point-by-point ablation. The CB and EAS are well established as safe, time-efficient and effective ablation tools. Initial studies using the RHB could also demonstrate promising results. However, more data are required. PMID:26835102

  19. Balloon Devices for Atrial Fibrillation Therapy.

    PubMed

    Metzner, Andreas; Wissner, Erik; Lin, Tina; Ouyang, Feifan; Kuck, Karl-Heinz

    2015-05-01

    Ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF) is an established treatment option for symptomatic patients refractory to antiarrhythmic medication. In patients with paroxysmal AF, ablation can be offered as first-line therapy when performed in an experienced centre. The accepted cornerstone for all ablation strategies is isolation of the pulmonary veins. However, it is still challenging to achieve contiguous, transmural, permanent lesions using radio-frequency current (RFC) based catheters in conjunction with a three-dimensional mapping system and the learning curve remains long. These limitations have kindled interest in developing and evaluating novel catheter designs that incorporate alternative energy sources. Novel catheters include balloon-based ablation systems, incorporating different energy modalities such as laser (Heartlight(™), CardioFocus, Marlborough, MA, US), RFC (Hot Balloon Catheter, Hayama Arrhythmia Institute, Kanagawa, Japan) and cryo-energy (ArcticFront, Medtronic, Inc., Minneapolis, MN, US). While the cryoballoon (CB) and the radiofrequency hot balloon (RHB) are single-shot devices, the endoscopic ablation system (EAS) allows for point-by-point ablation. The CB and EAS are well established as safe, time-efficient and effective ablation tools. Initial studies using the RHB could also demonstrate promising results. However, more data are required. PMID:26835102

  20. The role of obesity in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Nalliah, Chrishan Joseph; Sanders, Prashanthan; Kottkamp, Hans; Kalman, Jonathan M

    2016-05-21

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is commonly associated with overweight and obesity. Both conditions have been identified as major global epidemics associated with increased mortality and morbidity. Overweight populations have higher incidence, prevalence, severity, and progression of AF compared with their normal weight counterparts. Additionally, weight change appears to accompany alteration of arrhythmia profile, raising overweight, and obesity as potential targets for intervention. Recent clinical data confirm hypothesis drawn from epidemiological studies that durable weight reduction strategies facilitate effective management of AF. Stable weight loss decreases AF burden and AF recurrence following treatment. Structural remodelling in response to weight loss suggests that reverse remodelling of the AF substrate mediates improvement of arrhythmia profile. Obesity often co-exists with multiple AF risk factors that improve in response to weight loss, making a consolidated approach of weight loss and AF risk factor management preferable. However, weight loss for AF remains in its infancy, and its broad adoption as a management strategy for AF remains to be defined. PMID:26371114

  1. Hybrid Therapy in the Management of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Stárek, Zdeněk; Lehar, František; Jež, Jiří; Wolf, Jiří; Novák, Miroslav

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained arrhythmia. Because of the sub-optimal outcomes and associated risks of medical therapy as well as the recent advances in non-pharmacologic strategies, a multitude of combined (hybrid) algorithms have been introduced that improve efficacy of standalone therapies while maintaining a high safety profile. Antiarrhythmic administration enhances success rate of electrical cardioversion. Catheter ablation of antiarrhythmic drug-induced typical atrial flutter may prevent recurrent atrial fibrillation. Through simple ablation in the right atrium, suppression of atrial fibrillation may be achieved in patients with previously ineffective antiarrhythmic therapy. Efficacy of complex catheter ablation in the left atrium is improved with antiarrhythmic drugs. Catheter ablation followed by permanent pacemaker implantation is an effective and safe treatment option for selected patients. Additional strategies include pacing therapies such as atrial pacing with permanent pacemakers, preventive pacing algorithms, and/or implantable dual-chamber defibrillators are available. Modern hybrid strategies combining both epicardial and endocardial approaches in order to create a complex set of radiofrequency lesions in the left atrium have demonstrated a high rate of success and warrant further research. Hybrid therapy for atrial fibrillation reviews history of development of non-pharmacological treatment strategies and outlines avenues of ongoing research in this field. PMID:25028165

  2. Genetic Mutations in African Patients with Atrial Fibrillation: Rationale and Design of the Study of Genetics of Atrial Fibrillation in an African Population (SIGNAL)

    PubMed Central

    Bloomfield, Gerald S.; Temu, Tecla; Akwanalo, Constantine O.; Chen, Peng-Sheng; Emonyi, Wilfred; Heckbert, Susan R.; Koech, Myra M.; Manji, Imran; Shen, Changyu; Vatta, Matteo; Velazquez, Eric J.; Wessel, Jennifer; Kimaiyo, Sylvester; Inui, Thomas S.

    2015-01-01

    Background There is an urgent need to understand genetic associations with atrial fibrillation in ethnically diverse populations. There are no such data from sub-Saharan Africa, despite the fact that atrial fibrillation is one of the fastest-growing diseases. Moreover, patients with valvular heart disease are under-represented in studies of the genetics of atrial fibrillation. Methods We designed a case-control study of patients with and without a history of atrial fibrillation in Kenya. Cases with atrial fibrillation included those with and without valvular heart disease. Patients underwent clinical phenotyping and will have laboratory analysis and genetic testing of >240 candidate genes associated with cardiovascular diseases. A 12-month follow-up assessment will determine the groups’ morbidity and mortality. The primary analyses will describe genetic and phenotypic associations with atrial fibrillation. Results We recruited 298 participants: 72 (24%) with non-valvular atrial fibrillation, 78 (26%) with valvular atrial fibrillation and 148 (50%) controls without atrial fibrillation. The mean age of cases and controls were 53 and 48 years, respectively. Most (69%) participants were female. Controls more often had hypertension (45%) than those with valvular atrial fibrillation (27%). Diabetes and current tobacco smoking were uncommon. A history of stroke was present in 25% of cases and in 5% of controls. Conclusion This is the first study determining genetic associations in valvular and non-valvular atrial fibrillation in sub-Saharan Africa with a control population. The results advance knowledge about atrial fibrillation and will enhance international efforts to decrease atrial fibrillation-related morbidity. PMID:26385028

  3. Cardioembolic Stroke in Atrial Fibrillation-Rationale for Preventive Closure of the Left Atrial Appendage

    PubMed Central

    Leithäuser, Boris

    2009-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most common cardiac arrhythmias, and a major cause of morbidity and mortality due to cardioembolic stroke. The left atrial appendage is the major site of thrombus formation in non-valvular atrial fibrillation. Loss of atrial systole in atrial fibrillation and increased relative risk of associated stroke point strongly toward a role for stasis of blood in left atrial thrombosis, although thrombus formation is multifactorial, and much more than blood flow irregularities are implicated. Oral anticoagulation with vitamin-K-antagonists is currently the most effective prophylaxis for stroke in atrial fibrillation. Unfortunately, this treatment is often contraindicated, particularly in the elderly, in whom risk of stroke is high. Moreover, given the risk of major bleeding, there is reason to be skeptical of the net benefit when warfarin is used in those patients. This work reviews the pathophysiology of cardioembolic stroke and critically spotlights the current status of preventive anticoagulation therapy. Various techniques to exclude the left atrial appendage from circulation were discussed as a considerable alternative for stroke prophylaxis. PMID:19997539

  4. Prevention of Atrial Fibrillation: Report from an NHLBI Workshop

    PubMed Central

    Benjamin, Emelia J.; Chen, Peng-Sheng; Bild, Diane E.; Mascette, Alice M.; Albert, Christine M.; Alonso, Alvaro; Calkins, Hugh; Connolly, Stuart J.; Curtis, Anne B.; Darbar, Dawood; Ellinor, Patrick T.; Go, Alan S.; Goldschlager, Nora F.; Heckbert, Susan R.; Jalife, José; Kerr, Charles R.; Levy, Daniel; Lloyd-Jones, Donald M.; Massie, Barry M.; Nattel, Stanley; Olgin, Jeffrey E.; Packer, Douglas L.; Po, Sunny S.; Tsang, Teresa S.M.; Van Wagoner, David R.; Waldo, Albert L.; George Wyse, D

    2008-01-01

    The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute convened an expert panel April 28-29, 2008 to identify gaps and recommend research strategies to prevent atrial fibrillation (AF). The panel reviewed the existing basic scientific, epidemiologic and clinical literature about AF, and identified opportunities to advance AF prevention research. After discussion, the panel proposed the following recommendations: 1) Enhance understanding of the epidemiology of AF in the population by systematically and longitudinally investigating symptomatic and asymptomatic AF in cohort studies; 2) Improve detection of AF by evaluating the ability of existing and emerging methods and technologies to detect AF; 3) Improve noninvasive modalities for identifying key components of cardiovascular remodeling that promote AF, including genetic, fibrotic, autonomic, structural and electrical remodeling markers; 4) Develop additional animal models reflective of the pathophysiology of human AF; 5) Conduct secondary analyses of already-completed clinical trials to enhance knowledge of potentially effective methods to prevent AF and routinely include AF as an outcome in ongoing and future cardiovascular studies; and 6) Conduct clinical studies focused on secondary prevention of AF recurrence, which would inform future primary prevention investigations. PMID:19188521

  5. Wavelength index at three atrial sites in patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Padeletti, L; Michelucci, A; Giovannini, T; Porciani, M C; Bamoshmoosh, M; Mezzani, A; Chelucci, A; Pieragnoli, P; Gensini, G F

    1995-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the wavelength index (WLI) at three atrial sites in a group of 23 patients with recurrent episodes of lone paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (LPAF) and a control group (n = 20). All patients underwent programmed atrial stimulation (paced cycle length = 600 ms) at high, medium, and low lateral right atrial wall. P wave duration, sinus cycle length, and corrected sinus node recovery time were not significantly different between the two study groups. WLI was calculated according to the following formulas: atrial effective refractory period (AERP)/duration of atrial extrastimulus electrogram (A2) or AERP/A2 + atrial latency; and atrial functional refractory period (AFRP)/A2. WLI was significantly shorter in LPAF than in the control group at each of the paced atrial sites independently of the formula used. Duration of premature atrial electrogram appeared to play the major role in determining the difference in WLI between patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and the control group. PMID:7659580

  6. Novel Anticoagulants in Atrial Fibrillation: Monitoring, Reversal and Perioperative Management

    PubMed Central

    Shamoun, Fadi; Obeid, Hiba; Ramakrishna, Harish

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation continues to be a significant source of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Effective anticoagulation remains the cornerstone of outpatient and inpatient treatment. The use of the new generation of anticoagulants (NOACs) continues to grow. Recently published data indicate their cost-effectiveness and overall safety in stroke prevention; compared to vitamin K antagonists, they can be prescribed in fixed doses for long-term therapy without the need for coagulation monitoring. Both United States and European Guidelines recommend NOACs for stroke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation. This review discusses each of the NOACs, along with their efficacy and safety data. It explores the most recent guidelines regarding their perioperative use in atrial fibrillation patients. It also discusses bleeding complications, perioperative management, and reversal agents. PMID:26221593

  7. [Atrial fibrillation-pharmacological therapy for rate and rhythm control].

    PubMed

    Müller-Burri, Stephan Andreas

    2014-02-01

    The therapeutic management of patients with atrial fibrillation is based on the three pillars (1) prevention of thromboembolism, (2) rate control, and (3) rhythm control. Patients with one or more risk factors should be treated with an oral anticoagulants in order to prevent stroke and to reduce mortality. The goals of rate control, prevention of heart failure and alleviation of atrial fibrillation related symptoms, normally can be achieved by pharmacological agents slowing the conduction in the AV node (e. g. β-blockers, calcium channel blockers, digoxin). For patients remaining symptomatic despite sufficient rate control adding a rhythm control strategy may be considered. The currently available antiarrhythmic drugs (e. g. flecainide, propafenone, sotalol, dronedarone, amiodarone) are characterized by a rather low efficacy in maintaining sinus rhythm and various possibly life threatening side effects. Therefore, invasive therapies as catheter ablation are frequently needed to achieve rhythm control in symptomatic patients with atrial fibrillation. PMID:24463376

  8. Automatic Detection of Atrial Fibrillation for Mobile Devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaiser, Stefanie; Kirst, Malte; Kunze, Christophe

    Two versions of a new detector for automatic real-time detection of atrial fibrillation in non-invasive ECG signals are introduced. The methods are based on beat to beat variability, tachogram analysis and simple signal filtering. The implementation on mobile devices is made possible due to the low demand on computing power of the employed analysis procedures. The proposed algorithms correctly identified 436 of 440 five minute episodes of atrial fibrillation or flutter and also correctly identified up to 302 of 342 episodes of no atrial fibrillation, including normal sinus rhythm as well as other cardiac arrhythmias. These numbers correspond to a sensitivity of 99.1 % and a specificity of 88.3%.

  9. Atrial Fibrillation as a Marker of Occult Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Ostenfeld, Eva B.; Erichsen, Rune; Pedersen, Lars; Farkas, Dóra K.; Weiss, Noel S.; Sørensen, Henrik T.

    2014-01-01

    Background Recent studies suggest that cancer increases risk of atrial fibrillation. Whether atrial fibrillation is a marker for underlying occult cancer is unknown. Methods We conducted a cohort study (1980–2011) of all Danish patients with new-onset atrial fibrillation. To examine cancer risk, we computed absolute risk at 3 months and standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) by comparing observed cancer incidence among patients newly diagnosed with atrial fibrillation with that expected based on national cancer incidence during the period. Results Median follow-up time was 3.4 years among 269 742 atrial fibrillation patients. Within 3 months of follow-up, 6656 cancers occurred (absolute risk, 2.5%; 95% confidence intervals [CI], 2.4%–2.5%) versus 1302 expected, yielding a SIR of 5.11; 95% CI, 4.99–5.24. Associations were particularly strong for cancers of the lung, kidney, colon, ovary, and for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The SIR within 3 months of follow-up was 7.02; 95% CI, 6.76–7.28 for metastatic and 3.53; 95% CI, 3.38–3.68 for localized cancer. Beyond 3 months of follow-up, overall cancer risk was modestly increased (SIR, 1.13; 95% CI, 1.12–1.15). Conclusion Patients with new-onset atrial fibrillation had a markedly increased relative risk of a cancer diagnosis within the next three months, however, corresponding absolute risk was small. PMID:25119880

  10. New-onset atrial fibrillation in critically ill patients

    PubMed Central

    Sibley, Stephanie; Muscedere, John

    2015-01-01

    New-onset atrial fibrillation is a common problem in critically ill patients, with reported incidence ranging from 5% to 46%. It is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The present review summarizes studies investigating new-onset atrial fibrillation conducted in the critical care setting, focusing on the etiology, management of the hemodynamically unstable patient, rate versus rhythm control, ischemic stroke risk and anticoagulation. Recommendations for an approach to management in the intensive care unit are drawn from the results of these studies. PMID:26057373

  11. A rare complication of scorpion venom: atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Duman, Ali; Turkdogan, Kenan Ahmet; Akoz, Ayhan; Avcil, Mucahit; Dagli, Bekir; Canakci, Selcuk Eren

    2016-05-01

    Although the clinical findings of scorpion stings are often mild, they may lead to multiorgan failure and even cardiogenic shock. The toxin has both local and systemic effects. Local effects include edema, bruising(ecchymosis), and burning pain,whereas systemic effects include nausea,vomiting, hypotension or hypertension, cardiovascular toxicity, renal failure,and hemorrhage at different areas. The toxins have been implicated in a number of cardiac arrhythmias, including torsade de pointes, long QT syndrome, and atrial fibrillation. Here, we present a 90-year-old woman with no history of drug use or complaints due to dysrhythmias who developed atrial fibrillation after being stung by a scorpion. PMID:26508584

  12. [More with atrial fibrillation, anticoagulants since the coming of NOAK ].

    PubMed

    Forslund, Tomas; von Euler, Mia; Johnsson, Hans; Holmström, Margareta; Wettermark, Björn; Hjemdahl, Paul

    2015-01-01

    Since the introduction of NOAC (non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants) in 2011 as thromboprophylactic treatment for patients with atrial fibrillation, AF, the number of patients with a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation has increased markedly in our health care registers. The proportion of patients treated with warfarin or NOAC has increased from 47 % to 58 % in 2013. The use of acetylsalicylic acid in patients is decreasing rapidly in patients with AF. NOAC are mostly prescribed by specialists and are mainly used in younger patients with lower CHA2DS2-VASc scores and lower risk for renal insufficiency and bleeding. PMID:25584610

  13. Individualized approaches to thromboprophylaxis in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Ziff, Oliver J; Camm, A John

    2016-03-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia worldwide. The prevalence of AF in persons older than 55 years is at least 33.5 million globally and is predicted to more than double in the next half-century. Anticoagulation, heart rate control, and heart rhythm control comprise the 3 main treatment strategies in AF. Anticoagulation is aimed at preventing debilitating stroke, systemic embolism, and associated mortality. Historically, anticoagulation in AF was achieved with a vitamin K antagonist such as warfarin, which is supported by evidence demonstrating reduced incident stroke and all-cause mortality. However, warfarin has unpredictable pharmacokinetics with many drug-drug interactions that require regular monitoring to ensure patients remain in the therapeutic anticoagulant range. Non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants including dabigatran, rivaroxaban, apixaban, and edoxaban provide a possible solution to these issues with their more predictable pharmacokinetics, rapid onset of action, and greater specificity. Results from large randomized, controlled trials indicate that these agents are at least noninferior to warfarin in prevention of stroke. These trials also demonstrate a consistently lower incidence of intracranial hemorrhage, almost always all life-threatening bleeds, and many forms of major bleeds with the possible exception of gastrointestinal and some other forms of mucosal bleeding, compared with warfarin. Patients with AF are a heterogeneous population with diverse risk of stroke and bleeding, and different subgroups respond differently to anticoagulation. Important clinical questions have arisen regarding optimal anticoagulation drug selection in distinct populations such as those with renal impairment, older age, coronary artery disease, and heart failure as well as those at particularly high risk for bleeding or thromboembolism. In this review, treatment strategies in AF management are discussed in the context of different

  14. Whole Exome Sequencing in Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Lubitz, Steven A; Brody, Jennifer A; Bihlmeyer, Nathan A; Roselli, Carolina; Weng, Lu-Chen; Christophersen, Ingrid E; Alonso, Alvaro; Boerwinkle, Eric; Gibbs, Richard A; Bis, Joshua C; Cupples, L Adrienne; Mohler, Peter J; Nickerson, Deborah A; Muzny, Donna; Perez, Marco V; Psaty, Bruce M; Soliman, Elsayed Z; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Lunetta, Kathryn L; Benjamin, Emelia J; Heckbert, Susan R; Arking, Dan E; Ellinor, Patrick T; Lin, Honghuang

    2016-09-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a morbid and heritable arrhythmia. Over 35 genes have been reported to underlie AF, most of which were described in small candidate gene association studies. Replication remains lacking for most, and therefore the contribution of coding variation to AF susceptibility remains poorly understood. We examined whole exome sequencing data in a large community-based sample of 1,734 individuals with and 9,423 without AF from the Framingham Heart Study, Cardiovascular Health Study, Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study, and NHLBI-GO Exome Sequencing Project and meta-analyzed the results. We also examined whether genetic variation was enriched in suspected AF genes (N = 37) in AF cases versus controls. The mean age ranged from 59 to 73 years; 8,656 (78%) were of European ancestry. None of the 99,404 common variants evaluated was significantly associated after adjusting for multiple testing. Among the most significantly associated variants was a common (allele frequency = 86%) missense variant in SYNPO2L (rs3812629, p.Pro707Leu, [odds ratio 1.27, 95% confidence interval 1.13-1.43, P = 6.6x10-5]) which lies at a known AF susceptibility locus and is in linkage disequilibrium with a top marker from prior analyses at the locus. We did not observe significant associations between rare variants and AF in gene-based tests. Individuals with AF did not display any statistically significant enrichment for common or rare coding variation in previously implicated AF genes. In conclusion, we did not observe associations between coding genetic variants and AF, suggesting that large-effect coding variation is not the predominant mechanism underlying AF. A coding variant in SYNPO2L requires further evaluation to determine whether it is causally related to AF. Efforts to identify biologically meaningful coding variation underlying AF may require large sample sizes or populations enriched for large genetic effects. PMID:27589061

  15. Atrial fibrillation and sleep-disordered breathing

    PubMed Central

    Lavergne, Florent; Morin, Laurent; Armitstead, Jeff; Benjafield, Adam; Richards, Glenn

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common supraventricular arrhythmia that increases in prevalence with increasing age and in the presence of comorbidities such as heart failure (HF). AF increases the risk of a number of serious complications, including stroke and HF. As a result, the rate of hospitalization is high, making AF a costly disease. Treatment strategies for AF are broadly based around rate and rhythm control, either pharmacological or mechanical. There appear to be a number of links between sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) and AF, although further studies are needed to fully understand the physiological mechanisms that link these conditions. Patients with AF and SDB share a number of risk factors and comorbidities, including age, male sex, hypertension, congestive HF and coronary artery disease (CAD), and the prevalence of SDB in AF is higher than in the general population. Prevalence rates of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) in patients with AF have been reported to range from 21% to just over 80%. The prevalence of central sleep apnea (CSA) in patients with AF is less well defined, but appears to be particularly high in patients who also have HF and a reduced left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF). The frequency of apneas can be reduced by effective treatment of AF, while co-existing OSA reduces the effectiveness of treatments for AF and there is an increased risk of arrhythmia recurrence in the presence of SDB. Treating OSA with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy has shown the potential to decrease the incidence of AF, improve the effectiveness of AF interventions, and decrease the risk of arrhythmia recurrence, although data from large randomized, controlled clinical trials are lacking. Based on available data, inclusion of SDB recognition and management strategies as part of AF management appears to have the potential to reduce the impact of this arrhythmia at both the individual and societal levels, and has been recognized as important

  16. Functional Role and Mechanism of microRNA-28b in Atrial Myocyte in a Persistent Atrial Fibrillation Rat Model

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yongbin; Kang, Weiqiang; Wang, Xu; Chen, Meina; Qin, Qiaoji; Guo, Minglei; Ge, Zhiming

    2016-01-01

    Background Persistent atrial fibrillation has been indicated to be related with microRNA-28b. However, the exact role of microRNA-28b in persistent atrial fibrillation needs to be further elucidated. Therefore, this study aimed to establish a rat model of persistent atrial fibrillation to investigate the level of microRNA-28b in atrial myocytes and to explore the molecular mechanism involved. Material/Methods A persistent atrial fibrillation model was established in rats by using chronic rapid atrial pacing induction. The size of the heart was measured by ultrasonic method. The expression of microRNA-28b in left atrial myocytes was quantified by RT-PCR. Cardiomyocytes were isolated and cultured to detect cell proliferation and apoptosis by MTT and flow cytometry, respectively. The specific inhibitor of ERK signaling pathway, PD98059, was used to further illustrate the role of ERK signaling pathway in the modulation of cardiomyocytes in persistent atrial fibrillation. Results MicroRNA-28b was up-regulated in the experimental rat model with persistent atrial fibrillation. The proliferation of cardiomyocytes was significantly inhibited with potentiated apoptosis. Blockage of the ERK pathway suppressed the microRNA-28b expression and inhibited cell apoptosis. Conclusions microRNA-28b-induced growth inhibition and cell apoptosis of atrial myocytes was observed in the rat model with persistent atrial fibrillation, via activation of the ERK signaling pathway. PMID:27574952

  17. Effect of the atrial blanking time on the detection of atrial fibrillation in dual chamber pacing.

    PubMed

    Nowak, B; Kracker, S; Rippin, G; Horstick, G; Vincent, A; Geil, S; Himmrich, E; Meyer, J

    2001-04-01

    Patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) and dual chamber pacemakers frequently have short postventricular atrial blanking times and sensitive atrial sensing thresholds used to provide reliable detection and mode switching during AF. However, short atrial blanking times increase the risk of atrial sensing of ventricular far-field signals. We evaluated if the length of the atrial blanking time influences the detection of AF. The study included ten patients with a VDDR (n = 7) or DDDR system (n = 3), who presented with AF at 18 follow-up visits. Bipolar atrial sensing was programmed to the most sensitive value. Atrial blanking times were programmed from 100 to 200 ms in 25-ms steps in each patient. Using marker annotation, the following parameters were measured at ten consecutive ventricular beats: VAF = the interval between ventricular stimulus and first sensing of AF; AFS = the number of atrial-sensed events between two ventricular events; and XAF = the interpolated number of atrial-sensed events during atrial blanking time. The intervals between ventricular events and between atrial-sensed event markers showed no significant differences for the five blanking times tested. There was no significant influence of the atrial blanking time onto the measured parameters (least square means +/- standard error) with VAF between 281 +/- 12 and 300 +/- 12 ms (P = NS), AFs between 3.4 +/- 0.2 and 3.6 +/- 0.2 beats (P = NS) and XAF between 1.84 +/- 0.12 and 2.03 +/- 0.12 beats (P = NS). At ventricular rates < 100/min, the atrial sensing of AF in dual chamber pacemakers demonstrated no evidence for deterioration by an increase of the atrial blanking time from 100 to 200 ms. Thus, the risk of ventricular far-field sensing may be reduced without compromising atrial sensing. PMID:11341088

  18. Surgical Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation Using Energy Sources

    PubMed Central

    Brick, Alexandre Visconti; Braile, Domingo Marcolino

    2015-01-01

    Surgical ablation, concomitant with other operations, is an option for treatment in patients with chronic atrial fibrillation. The aim of this study is to present a literature review on surgical ablation of atrial fibrillation in patients undergoing cardiac surgery, considering energy sources and return to sinus rhythm. A comprehensive survey was performed in the literature on surgical ablation of atrial fibrillation considering energy sources, sample size, study type, outcome (early and late), and return to sinus rhythm. Analyzing studies with immediate results (n=5), the percentage of return to sinus rhythm ranged from 73% to 96%, while those with long-term results (n=20) (from 12 months on) ranged from 62% to 97.7%. In both of them, there was subsequent clinical improvement of patients who underwent ablation, regardless of the energy source used. Surgical ablation of atrial fibrillation is essential for the treatment of this arrhythmia. With current technology, it may be minimally invasive, making it mandatory to perform a procedure in an attempt to revert to sinus rhythm in patients requiring heart surgery. PMID:26934404

  19. Mechanisms of ranolazine's dual protection against atrial and ventricular fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Verrier, Richard L.; Kumar, Kapil; Nieminen, Tuomo; Belardinelli, Luiz

    2013-01-01

    Coronary artery disease and heart failure carry concurrent risk for atrial fibrillation and life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias. We review evidence indicating that at therapeutic concentrations, ranolazine has potential for dual suppression of these arrhythmias. Mechanisms and clinical implications are discussed. PMID:23220484

  20. How to define valvular atrial fibrillation?

    PubMed

    Fauchier, Laurent; Philippart, Raphael; Clementy, Nicolas; Bourguignon, Thierry; Angoulvant, Denis; Ivanes, Fabrice; Babuty, Dominique; Bernard, Anne

    2015-10-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) confers a substantial risk of stroke. Recent trials comparing vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) with non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs) in AF were performed among patients with so-called "non-valvular" AF. The distinction between "valvular" and "non-valvular" AF remains a matter of debate. Currently, "valvular AF" refers to patients with mitral stenosis or artificial heart valves (and valve repair in North American guidelines only), and should be treated with VKAs. Valvular heart diseases, such as mitral regurgitation, aortic stenosis (AS) and aortic insufficiency, do not result in conditions of low flow in the left atrium, and do not apparently increase the risk of thromboembolism brought by AF. Post-hoc analyses suggest that these conditions probably do not make the thromboembolic risk less responsive to NOACs compared with most forms of "non-valvular" AF. The pathogenesis of thrombosis is probably different for blood coming into contact with a mechanical prosthetic valve compared with what occurs in most other forms of AF. This may explain the results of the only trial performed with a NOAC in patients with a mechanical prosthetic valve (only a few of whom had AF), where warfarin was more effective and safer than dabigatran. By contrast, AF in the presence of a bioprosthetic heart valve or after valve repair appears to have a risk of thromboembolism that is not markedly different from other forms of "non-valvular" AF. Obviously, we should no longer consider the classification of AF as "valvular" (or not) for the purpose of defining the aetiology of the arrhythmia, but for the determination of a different risk of thromboembolic events and the need for a specific antithrombotic strategy. As long as there is no better new term or widely accepted definition, "valvular AF" refers to patients with mitral stenosis or artificial heart valves. Patients with "non-valvular AF" may have other types of valvular heart disease. One should

  1. The Connexin40A96S mutation from a patient with atrial fibrillation causes decreased atrial conduction velocities and sustained episodes of induced atrial fibrillation in mice.

    PubMed

    Lübkemeier, Indra; Andrié, René; Lickfett, Lars; Bosen, Felicitas; Stöckigt, Florian; Dobrowolski, Radoslaw; Draffehn, Astrid M; Fregeac, Julien; Schultze, Joachim L; Bukauskas, Feliksas F; Schrickel, Jan Wilko; Willecke, Klaus

    2013-12-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common type of cardiac arrhythmia and a major cause of stroke. In the mammalian heart the gap junction proteins connexin40 (Cx40) and connexin43 (Cx43) are strongly expressed in the atrial myocardium mediating effective propagation of electrical impulses. Different heterozygous mutations in the coding region for Cx40 were identified in patients with AF. We have generated transgenic Cx40A96S mice harboring one of these mutations, the loss-of-function Cx40A96S mutation, as a model for atrial fibrillation. Cx40A96S mice were characterized by immunochemical and electrophysiological analyses. Significantly reduced atrial conduction velocities and strongly prolonged episodes of atrial fibrillation were found after induction in Cx40A96S mice. Analyses of the gating properties of Cx40A96S channels in cultured HeLa cells also revealed significantly lower junctional conductance and enhanced sensitivity voltage gating of Cx40A96S in comparison to Cx40 wild-type gap junctions. This is caused by reduced open probabilities of Cx40A96S gap junction channels, while single channel conductance remained the same. Similar to the corresponding patient, heterozygous Cx40A96S mice revealed normal expression levels and localization of the Cx40 protein. We conclude that heterozygous Cx40A96S mice exhibit prolonged episodes of induced atrial fibrillation and severely reduced atrial conduction velocities similar to the corresponding human patient. PMID:24060583

  2. Lessons from computer simulations of ablation of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Jacquemet, Vincent

    2016-05-01

    This paper reviews the simulations of catheter ablation in computer models of the atria, from the first attempts to the most recent anatomical models. It describes how postulated substrates of atrial fibrillation can be incorporated into mathematical models, how modelling studies can be designed to test ablation strategies, what their current trade-offs and limitations are, and what clinically relevant lessons can be learnt from these simulations. Drawing a parallel between clinical and modelling studies, six ablation targets are considered: pulmonary vein isolation, linear ablation, ectopic foci, complex fractionated atrial electrogram, rotors and ganglionated plexi. The examples presented for each ablation target illustrate a major advantage of computer models, the ability to identify why a therapy is successful or not in a given atrial fibrillation substrate. The integration of pathophysiological data to create detailed models of arrhythmogenic substrates is expected to solidify the understanding of ablation mechanisms and to provide theoretical arguments supporting substrate-specific ablation strategies. PMID:26846178

  3. Recent Trends in Imaging for Atrial Fibrillation Ablation

    PubMed Central

    Kabra, Rajesh; Singh, Jagmeet

    2010-01-01

    Catheter ablation provides an important treatment option for patients with both paroxysmal and persistent atrial fibrillation. It mainly involves pulmonary vein isolation and additional ablations in the left atrium in persistent cases. There have been significant advancements in this procedure to enhance the safety and effectiveness. One of them is the evolution of various imaging modalities to facilitate better visualization of the complex left atrial anatomy and the pulmonary veins in order to deliver the lesions accurately. In this article, we review the electroanatomic mapping systems including the magnetic-based and impedence-based systems. Each of these mapping systems has its own advantages and disadvantages. In addition, we also discuss the role of intracardiac echocardiography and three dimensional rotational angiography in atrial fibrillation ablation. PMID:20473373

  4. Stroke risk assessment in atrial fibrillation: risk factors and markers of atrial myopathy.

    PubMed

    Calenda, Brandon W; Fuster, Valentin; Halperin, Jonathan L; Granger, Christopher B

    2016-09-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a complex phenomenon associated with electrical, mechanical, and structural abnormalities of the atria. Ischaemic stroke in AF is only partially understood, but the mechanisms are known to be related to the atrial substrate as well as the atrial rhythm. The temporal dissociation between timing of AF and occurrence of stroke has led to the hypothesis that fibrotic, prothrombotic atrial tissue is an important cause of thrombus formation in patients with AF, independent of the atrial rhythm. Current stroke risk scores are practical, but limited in their capacity to predict stroke risk accurately in individual patients. Stroke prediction might be improved by the addition of emerging risk factors, many of which are expressions of atrial fibrosis. The use of novel parameters, including clinical criteria, biomarkers, and imaging data, might improve stroke risk prediction and inform on optimal treatment for patients with AF and perhaps individuals only at risk of AF. PMID:27383079

  5. Adjusted Left Atrial Emptying Fraction as a Predictor of Procedural Outcome after Catheter Ablation for Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Im, Sung Il; Kim, Sun Won; Choi, Cheol Ung; Kim, Jin Won; Yong, Hwan Seok; Kim, Eung Ju; Rha, Seung-Woon; Park, Chang Gyu; Seo, Hong Seog; Oh, Dong Joo; Lim, Hong Euy

    2015-01-01

    Structural remodeling of the left atrium is a risk factor for recurrent arrhythmia after catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation; however, data are sparse regarding the role of functional left atrial remodeling in predicting procedural outcomes. We evaluated whether left atrial transport function could be used to predict recurrent atrial fibrillation. From July 2008 through August 2010, we enrolled 202 consecutive patients who underwent catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation (paroxysmal=120, persistent=82). Left atrial volumes (LAVs) were measured by means of multislice computed tomography at every 10% of the R-R interval, and measurements were adjusted for body surface area to yield the LAV index (LAVI) at baseline. The left atrial emptying fraction (LAEF) was calculated according to LAV differences. During the mean follow-up period of 10 ± 4 months after a single ablation procedure, atrial fibrillation recurred in 59 patients (paroxysmal=19, persistent=40). Multivariate analysis revealed that persistent atrial fibrillation, early mitral inflow velocity, LAVImax, LAVImin, LAEF, LAVImax/LAEF, and LAVImin/LAEF were all independent predictors of atrial fibrillation, but the best predictor was LAVImin/LAEF (β=1.329, P=0.001). The cutoff value was 1.61 (mL/m2)/%, and the sensitivity and specificity were 74.6% and 62.2%, respectively (area under the curve=0.761). Our study shows that adjusted left atrial emptying fraction with use of multislice computed tomography might be a useful, noninvasive method to select patients for ablation. PMID:26175632

  6. Percutaneous Left Atrial Appendage Ligation for Stroke Prevention in Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Valderrábano, Miguel; Price, Matthew J

    2015-01-01

    Prevention of thromboembolic complications in atrial fibrillation remains a tremendous clinical challenge. Knowledge that the left atrial appendage (LAA) is the most common anatomical origin of cardioembolic strokes1 has been the main motivation to develop clinical and procedural strategies to exclude the LAA from the circulation, either surgically or percutaneously. This review discusses the rationale behind these strategies, their relative merits, and future prospects for LAA exclusion strategies. PMID:26306126

  7. Managing atrial fibrillation in the elderly: critical appraisal of dronedarone

    PubMed Central

    Trigo, Paula; Fischer, Gregory W

    2012-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most commonly seen arrhythmia in the geriatric population and is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Treatment of the elderly with atrial fibrillation remains challenging for physicians, because this unique subpopulation is characterized by multiple comorbidities requiring chronic use of numerous medications, which can potentially lead to severe drug interactions. Furthermore, age-related changes in the cardiovascular system as well as other physiological changes result in altered drug pharmacokinetics. Dronedarone is a new drug recently approved for the treatment of arrhythmias, such as atrial fibrillation and/or atrial flutter. Dronedarone is a benzofuran amiodarone analog which lacks the iodine moiety and contains a methane sulfonyl group that decreases its lipophilicity. These differences in chemical structure are responsible for making dronedarone less toxic than amiodarone which, in turn, results in fewer side effects. Adverse events for dronedarone include gastrointestinal side effects and rash. No dosage adjustments are required for patients with renal impairment. However, the use of dronedarone is contraindicated in the presence of severe hepatic dysfunction. PMID:22291468

  8. Novel Upstream Approaches to Prevent Atrial Fibrillation Perpetuation.

    PubMed

    Jalife, José

    2016-04-01

    The mechanisms underlying atrial fibrillation (AF) in humans are poorly understood. In particular, we simply do not understand how atrial AF becomes persistent or permanent. The objective of this brief review is to address the most important factors involved in the mechanism of AF perpetuation, including structural remodeling in the form of fibrosis and electrical remodeling secondary to ion channel expression changes. In addition, I discuss the possibility that both fibrosis and electrical remodeling might be preventable when intervening pharmacologically early enough before the remodeling process reaches a point of no return. PMID:26968673

  9. Clinical Differences between Subtypes of Atrial Fibrillation and Flutter: Cross-Sectional Registry of 407 Patients

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Eduardo Dytz; Guimarães, Raphael Boesche; Stephan, Laura Siga; Medeiros, Alexandre Kreling; Foltz, Katia; Santanna, Roberto Tofani; Pires, Leonardo Martins; Kruse, Marcelo Lapa; de Lima, Gustavo Glotz; Leiria, Tiago Luiz Luz

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter account for one third of hospitalizations due to arrhythmias, determining great social and economic impacts. In Brazil, data on hospital care of these patients is scarce. Objective To investigate the arrhythmia subtype of atrial fibrillation and flutter patients in the emergency setting and compare the clinical profile, thromboembolic risk and anticoagulants use. Methods Cross-sectional retrospective study, with data collection from medical records of every patient treated for atrial fibrillation and flutter in the emergency department of Instituto de Cardiologia do Rio Grande do Sul during the first trimester of 2012. Results We included 407 patients (356 had atrial fibrillation and 51 had flutter). Patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation were in average 5 years younger than those with persistent atrial fibrillation. Compared to paroxysmal atrial fibrillation patients, those with persistent atrial fibrillation and flutter had larger atrial diameter (48.6 ± 7.2 vs. 47.2 ± 6.2 vs. 42.3 ± 6.4; p < 0.01) and lower left ventricular ejection fraction (66.8 ± 11 vs. 53.9 ± 17 vs. 57.4 ± 16; p < 0.01). The prevalence of stroke and heart failure was higher in persistent atrial fibrillation and flutter patients. Those with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and flutter had higher prevalence of CHADS2 score of zero when compared to those with persistent atrial fibrillation (27.8% vs. 18% vs. 4.9%; p < 0.01). The prevalence of anticoagulation in patients with CHA2DS2-Vasc ≤ 2 was 40%. Conclusions The population in our registry was similar in its comorbidities and demographic profile to those of North American and European registries. Despite the high thromboembolic risk, the use of anticoagulants was low, revealing difficulties for incorporating guideline recommendations. Public health strategies should be adopted in order to improve these rates. PMID:26016782

  10. Catheter Ablation for Long-Standing Persistent Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Romero, Jorge; Gianni, Carola; Di Biase, Luigi; Natale, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia worldwide and represents a major burden to health care systems. Atrial fibrillation is associated with a 4- to 5-fold increased risk of thromboembolic stroke. The pulmonary veins have been identified as major sources of atrial triggers for AF. This is particularly true in patients with paroxysmal AF but not always the case for those with long-standing persistent AF (LSPAF), in which other locations for ectopic beats have been well recognized. Structures with foci triggering AF include the coronary sinus, the left atrial appendage (LAA), the superior vena cava, the crista terminalis, and the ligament of Marshall. More than 30 studies reporting results on radiofrequency ablation of LSPAF have been published to date. Most of these are observational studies with very different methodologies using different strategies. As a result, there has been remarkable variation in short- and long-term success, which suggests that the optimal ablation technique for LSPAF is still to be elucidated. In this review we discuss the different approaches to LSPAF catheter ablation, starting with pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) through ablation lines in different left atrial locations, the role of complex fractionated atrial electrograms, focal impulses and rotor modulation, autonomic modulation (ganglionated plexi), alcohol ablation, and the future of epicardial mapping and ablation for this arrhythmia. A stepwise ablation approach requires several key ablation techniques, such as meticulous PVI, linear ablation at the roof and mitral isthmus, electrogram-targeted ablation with particular attention to triggers in the coronary sinus and LAA, and discretionary right atrial ablation (superior vena cava, intercaval, or cavotricuspid isthmus lines). PMID:26306125

  11. ECG characterization of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation: parameter extraction and automatic diagnosis algorithm.

    PubMed

    Ros, E; Mota, S; Fernández, F J; Toro, F J; Bernier, J L

    2004-12-01

    Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) is one of the most common heart arrhythmias. It is very difficult to detect unless an explicit Atrial Fibrillation episode occurs during the exploration. The present paper describes a number of low level parameters extracted from ECG traces where no Atrial Fibrillation process is present. The ability of this parameter set to characterize PAF patients is studied and discussed. Based on these parameters a modular automatic classification algorithm for PAF diagnosis is developed and evaluated. PMID:15518652

  12. How and When to Screen for Atrial Fibrillation after Stroke: Insights from Insertable Cardiac Monitoring Devices

    PubMed Central

    Bridge, Francesca; Thijs, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    The introduction of insertable cardiac monitoring devices has dramatically altered our understanding of the role of intermittent atrial fibrillation in cryptogenic stroke. In this narrative review we discuss the incidence, timing and relationship between atrial fibrillation and cryptogenic stroke, how to select patients for monitoring and the value and limitations of different monitoring strategies. We also discuss the role of empirical anticoagulation, and atrial fibrillation burden as a means of tailoring anticoagulation in patients at high risk of bleeding. PMID:27283276

  13. An atypical case of vagally mediated atrial fibrillation in an elderly woman: electrocardiographic caveats to diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Sriram, Chenni S; Naccarelli, Gerald V; Luck, Jerry C

    2014-01-01

    Vagally mediated paroxysmal atrial fibrillation is typically described to occur in otherwise healthy young-to-middle aged males during periods of high vagal tone. We report a case of cardioinhibitory type neurocardiogenic syncope associated with atrial fibrillation in an elderly female during episodes of nausea. This was replicated during tilt-table testing. The atrial fibrillation was part of a unique snap shot of the entire electrophysiological spectrum of the vagal response captured in detail in this index patient. PMID:25060130

  14. Ablation for atrial fibrillation during mitral valve surgery: 1-year results through continuous subcutaneous monitoring.

    PubMed

    Bogachev-Prokophiev, Alexandr; Zheleznev, Sergey; Romanov, Alexander; Pokushalov, Evgeny; Pivkin, Alexey; Corbucci, Giorgio; Karaskov, Alexander

    2012-07-01

    Continuous monitoring of cardiac rhythm may play an important role in measuring the true symptomatic/asymptomatic atrial fibrillation (AF) burden and improve the management of anti-arrhythmic and anti-thrombotic therapies. Forty-seven patients with mitral valve disease and longstanding persistent AF (LSPAF) underwent a left atrial maze procedure with bipolar radiofrequency and valve surgery. The follow-up data recorded by an implanted loop recorder were analysed after 3, 6 and 12 months. On discharge, 40 (85.1%) patients were in stable sinus rhythm, as documented by in-office electrocardiography (ECG), 4 (8.5%) were in pacemaker rhythm and 3 (6.4%) were in AF. One (2.1%) patient died after 7 months. On 12-month follow-up examination, 30 (65.2%) patients had an AF burden <0.5% and were classified as responders. Three (6.5%) of the 16 non-responders had atrial flutter and 13 (27.7%) had documented AF recurrences with an AF burden >0.5%. Two (4.3%) patients with AF recurrences were completely asymptomatic. Among the symptomatic events stored by the patients, only 27.6% was confirmed as genuine AF recurrences according to the concomitant ECG recorded by the implanted loop recorder. A concomitant bipolar maze procedure during mitral valve surgery is effective in treating AF, as proved by detailed 1-year continuous monitoring. PMID:22514258

  15. Increased susceptibility to atrial fibrillation secondary to atrial fibrosis in transgenic goats expressing transforming growth factor - B1

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia in people with significant morbidity and mortality. There is a strong association between atrial fibrosis and AF. Transforming growth factor B1 (TGF-B1) is an essential mediator of atrial fibrosis in animal models and human pat...

  16. [Cardioversion for atrial fibrillations: not better than ventricular rate control].

    PubMed

    Verheugt, F W A

    2003-04-01

    Atrial fibrillation is a frequent cardiac arrhythmia in the elderly, which can be treated either by rate control, or by rhythm control through chemical or electrical cardioversion. Rate control is easily achieved, but leaves the arrhythmia with its inherent risk of heart failure and stroke intact. Although rhythm control is logistically more complex to obtain, it does restore normal sinus rhythm. However, dangerous antiarrhythmics are then needed to maintain this. Recently, two randomised trials showed that rate control is not inferior to rhythm control. Restoration and maintenance of sinus rhythm was accompanied by a higher incidence of death, ventricular arrhythmias, heart failure, stroke and the need for permanent pacemaker implantation. Recurrent atrial fibrillation can be treated optimally by rate control through digitalis, beta-blockers or calcium antagonists, accompanied by oral anticoagulation. Once the sinus rhythm has been restored, oral anticoagulation should be continued. PMID:12712644

  17. Atrial fibrillation management: evaluating rate vs rhythm control.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Tuan; Jolly, Umjeet; Sidhu, Kiran; Yee, Raymond; Leong-Sit, Peter

    2016-06-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an increasing global issue leading to increased hospitalizations, adverse health related events and mortality. This review focuses on the management of atrial fibrillation, in particular in the past decade, comparing two major strategies, rate or rhythm control. We evaluate the evidence for each strategy, pharmacological options and the increasing utilization of invasive techniques, in particular catheter ablation and use of implantable cardiac pacing devices. Pharmacological comparative trials evaluating both strategies have shown rate control being non-inferior to rhythm control for clinical outcomes of mortality and other cardiovascular events (including stroke). Catheter ablation techniques, involving radiofrequency ablation and recently cryoablation, have shown promising results in particular with paroxysmal AF. However, persistent AF provides ongoing challenges and will be a particular focus of continued research. PMID:26960034

  18. Dronedarone: evidence supporting its therapeutic use in the treatment of atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Sullivan, Renee M; Olshansky, Brian

    2010-01-01

    Introduction: Dronedarone, a benzofuran derivative with a structure similar to amiodarone, has been developed as a potential therapy for patients with atrial fibrillation. Aim: To review the published evidence regarding the efficacy and safety of dronedarone use in patients with atrial fibrillation. Evidence review: Available evidence suggests that dronedarone 400 mg orally twice daily can lengthen the time to and decrease the overall recurrence of atrial fibrillation compared with placebo. Dronedarone may reduce risk of mortality and cardiovascular hospitalization. Patients with atrial fibrillation receiving dronedarone had improved ventricular rate control compared with patients receiving placebo. Dronedarone is associated with few serious adverse events except, notably, in patients with decompensated heart failure. Place in therapy: Dronedarone may have a role in rate and rhythm control for patients with atrial fibrillation. Dronedarone can reduce unique, but potentially serious, end points in patients with atrial fibrillation. Despite this, the exact role of dronedarone in the management of patients with atrial fibrillation continues to emerge. It remains uncertain if dronedarone should be considered a primary treatment strategy for atrial fibrillation. Dronedarone should not be administered to patients with decompensated heart failure. Conclusion: Dronedarone is a unique drug that may serve a key role to treat patients with atrial fibrillation. PMID:21042542

  19. The Mechanism of and Preventive Therapy for Stroke in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Young-Hoon; Roh, Seung-Young

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is a major cardiac cause of stroke, and a pathogenesis involving thrombus formation in patients with atrial fibrillation is well established. A strategy for rhythm control that involves catheter ablation and anticoagulation therapy is evolving. A strategy for rhythm control that restores and maintains sinus rhythm should reduce the risk of ischemic stroke that is associated with atrial fibrillation; however, this is yet to be proven in large-scale randomized controlled trials. This paper reviews the emerging role of rhythm control therapy for atrial fibrillation to prevent stroke. PMID:27283277

  20. Left atrial thrombus under dabigatran in a patient with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Janssen, A M; van de Kerkhof, D; Szabó, B; Durian, M F; van der Voort, P H

    2016-08-01

    Dabigatran is a new direct competitive inhibitor of thrombin and is equally effective and safe as warfarin in the prevention of thromboembolism in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. We present a case of a 60-year-old man with persistent nonvalvular atrial fibrillation who switched from acenocoumarol to dabigatran 110 mg twice daily. After five months the patient developed a large atrial thrombus, occlusion of the tibial arteries of the right foot, cerebellar infarction and multiple infarctions in kidneys and spleen. Blood test showed a dabigatran concentration of 35 ng/ml six hours after intake, correlating with a low trough concentration of 24-27 ng/mL and significantly increased thromboembolic risk. Other risk factors for thromboembolism were excluded. The present case indicates that in selected patients, there might be an indication for dose adjustments based on serum levels of dabigatran to ensure patient efficacy (thromboembolic events) and safety (bleeding). PMID:27571947

  1. Defining nonvalvular atrial fibrillation: A quest for clarification.

    PubMed

    Martins, Raphaël P; Galand, Vincent; Colette, Edouard; Behar, Nathalie; Pavin, Dominique; Leclercq, Christophe; Daubert, Jean-Claude; Mabo, Philippe

    2016-08-01

    Non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (NOACs) are currently recommended for patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation since the publication of the 4 major pivotal trials evaluating the efficacy and safety of factor IIa and factor Xa inhibitors. The definition of nonvalvular atrial fibrillation is unclear, varying from one trial to another and even between North American and European guidelines, which is a source of uncertainties in clinical practice. However, many patients with atrial fibrillation present signs of valvular involvement, and clarification of this term is needed to not deny NOACs to patients based on the wrong perception that they may have valvular atrial fibrillation. The currently unique contraindications to NOACs are patients with mechanical heart valves and those with moderate-to-severe mitral stenosis, as stated by the recent 2015 position paper of the European Heart Rhythm Association. Patients with native heart valve involvement, regardless of their severity, are suitable for NOAC therapy. Patients with bioprosthetic heart valves and mitral valve repair may be suitable for NOACs except for the first 3 and the first 3-6 months postoperatively, respectively. Patients with transaortic valve implantation or percutaneous transluminal aortic valvuloplasty are also considered as being eligible for NOACs, although the bleeding risk has to be carefully considered in this population often requiring a combination with antiplatelet therapy. Future studies are warranted to increase the level of evidence of use of NOACs, particularly in patients with transaortic valve implantation and valvular surgery, and to determine whether they could be used in the future in the only 2 remaining contraindications. PMID:27502864

  2. A Simple Porcine Model of Inducible Sustained Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Anson M; Miller, Jacob R; Voeller, Rochus K; Zierer, Andreas; Lall, Shelly C; Schuessler, Richard B; Damiano, Ralph J; Melby, Spencer J

    2016-01-01

    The surgical management of atrial fibrillation (AF) is an evolving field with a history of testing various lesion sets and ablation technologies. Previous animal models of AF require a chronic intervention to make AF reliably inducible. Our objective was to create an acute, reliable, and reproducible porcine model of sustained AF. To accomplish this, 21 adult domestic pigs underwent median sternotomy. Methods to induce AF were then performed sequentially: manual stimulation, rapid pacing (200 beats per minute), and then rapid pacing of 8 beats with a cycle length of 300 milliseconds, followed by an extra stimulus at decreasing cycle lengths. If AF was not induced, burst pacing was performed at a cycle length of 90 milliseconds for 30 seconds. If AF was still not induced, intravenous neostigmine was administered, and the process was repeated. Atrial fibrillation was considered sustained after 1 minute. Attempts at AF induction were successful in 18 (86%) of 21. Atrial fibrillation was induced during manual stimulation in four (19%), during rapid pacing in five (24%), during burst pacing in five (24%), and after the administration of neostigmine in four (19%). Mean (SD) duration of AF was 3.6 (2.6) minutes. Of the 18, 14 (78%) reverted to sinus rhythm spontaneously and 4 (22%) required an antiarrhythmic. This technique of inducing AF can easily be used to evaluate new technologies and lesion sets without the need for creating a chronic animal model. PMID:26889882

  3. Atrial fibrillation in dialysis patients: time to abandon warfarin?

    PubMed

    Brancaccio, Diego; Neri, Luca; Bellocchio, Francesco; Barbieri, Carlo; Amato, Claudia; Mari, Flavio; Canaud, Bernard; Stuard, Stefano

    2016-05-16

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a frequent clinical complication in dialysis patients, and warfarin therapy represents the most common approach for reducing the risk of stroke in this population. However, current evidence based on observational studies, offer conflicting results, whereas no randomized controlled trials have been carried out so far. Additionally, many clinicians are wary of the possible role of warfarin as vascular calcification inducer and its potential to increase the high risk of bleeding among patients on dialysis. Ideally the most promising therapy would be based on direct inhibitors of factor IIa or Xa; however, at the moment, none of these drugs can be safely prescribed in dialysis patients, because of their potentially dangerous accumulation, and the lack of sufficient experience with apixaban or rivaroxaban, two drugs showing a favorable pharmacokinetic profile in end-stage renal disease. Hence, the use of vitamin K inhibitors is currently the only pharmacological option for stroke prevention in dialysis patients with atrial fibrillation, leaving the clinicians in a management conundrum.This review discusses the trade-offs implicated in warfarin use for this population, the promises of newly developed drugs, the role of dialysis as atrial fibrillation trigger, as well as potential non-pharmacological management options suitable in selected clinical situations. PMID:27079417

  4. Artificial Intelligence Methods Applied to Parameter Detection of Atrial Fibrillation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arotaritei, D.; Rotariu, C.

    2015-09-01

    In this paper we present a novel method to develop an atrial fibrillation (AF) based on statistical descriptors and hybrid neuro-fuzzy and crisp system. The inference of system produce rules of type if-then-else that care extracted to construct a binary decision system: normal of atrial fibrillation. We use TPR (Turning Point Ratio), SE (Shannon Entropy) and RMSSD (Root Mean Square of Successive Differences) along with a new descriptor, Teager- Kaiser energy, in order to improve the accuracy of detection. The descriptors are calculated over a sliding window that produce very large number of vectors (massive dataset) used by classifier. The length of window is a crisp descriptor meanwhile the rest of descriptors are interval-valued type. The parameters of hybrid system are adapted using Genetic Algorithm (GA) algorithm with fitness single objective target: highest values for sensibility and sensitivity. The rules are extracted and they are part of the decision system. The proposed method was tested using the Physionet MIT-BIH Atrial Fibrillation Database and the experimental results revealed a good accuracy of AF detection in terms of sensitivity and specificity (above 90%).

  5. Patient's Guide to Living with Atrial Fibrillation

    MedlinePlus

    ... fibrillation. Circulation . 2002 ; 106 : 14 –16. OpenUrl FREE Full Text ↵ The AFFIRM Investigators. Relationships between sinus rhythm, treatment, ... Circulation . 2004 ; 109 : 1509 –1513. OpenUrl Abstract / FREE Full Text ↵ Shea JB, Maisel WH. Cardioversion. Circulation . 2002 ; 106 : ...

  6. Ablate and pace revisited: long term survival and predictors of permanent atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Queiroga, A; Marshall, H J; Clune, M; Gammage, M D

    2003-01-01

    Objective: To assess long term mortality and identify factors associated with the development of permanent atrial fibrillation after atrioventricular (AV) node ablation for drug refractory paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. Design: Retrospective cohort study. Setting: UK tertiary centre teaching hospital. Patients: Patients admitted to the University Hospital Birmingham between January 1995 and December 2000. Interventions: AV node ablation and dual chamber mode switching pacing. Main outcome measures: Long term mortality and predictors of permanent atrial fibrillation, assessed through Kaplan-Meier curves and logistic regression. Results: 114 patients (1995–2000) were included: age (mean (SD)), 65 (9) years; 55 (48%) male; left atrial diameter 4 (1) cm; left ventricular end diastolic diameter 5 (1) cm; ejection fraction 54 (17)%. Indications for AV node ablation were paroxysmal atrial fibrillation in 95 (83%) and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation/flutter in 19 (17%). The survival curve showed a low overall mortality after 72 months (10.5%). Fifty two per cent of patients progressed to permanent atrial fibrillation within 72 months. There was no difference in progression to permanency between paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation/flutter (log rank 0.06, p = 0.8). Logistic regression did not show any association between the variables collected and the development of permanent atrial fibrillation, although age over 80 years showed a trend (p = 0.07). Conclusions: Ablate and pace is associated with a low overall mortality. No predictors of permanent atrial fibrillation were identified, but 48% of patients were still in sinus rhythm at 72 months. These results support the use of dual chamber pacing for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation patients after ablate and pace. PMID:12923021

  7. [Atrial fibrillation. New views on an old disease].

    PubMed

    Asensio-Lafuente, E; Alvarez-Mosquera, J B; Lozano-Díaz, J E; Farías-Vega, A; Narváez-David, R; Dorantes-García, J; Orea-Tejeda, A; Rebollar-González, V; Portos-Silva, J M; Oseguera-Moguel, J

    2001-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (Afib) is clinically the most common arrhythmia. Its main complications are recurrent embolic events and a variable deterioration of functional class. Atrial fibrillation induces changes in cellular ionic channels that self-perpetuate the arrhythmia. The pharmacologic treatment of Afib is directed toward correction of those changes and return to sinus rhythm. It is also intended to maintain adequate heart rates and prevent embolic events through anticoagulation or platelet antiagregation. There are presently several class IC or class III antiarrhythmics available for attempting a return to sinus rhythm. The success rates are irregular, the best achieved with flecainide or propafenone among patients without structural heart disease. Amiodarone is the best choice when there is such a problem. The combination possibilities are huge, so that each case must be individualized. The new class III antiarrhythmics are very effective, but have a relatively high rate of side effects including torsade de pointes. Anticoagulation should be the preferred treatment among the majority of patients, but each case should be individually evaluated. New therapies such as focal or linear catheter ablation techniques, atrial or biatrial programmed stimulation, and atrial cardioverter-defibrillator need longer follow-up and experience to be objectively evaluated, although there are reasons to be optimistic in the future, even if patients need antiarrhythmic support at present. Surgery has high morbi-mortality rates, so it is not the preferred approach. PMID:11692812

  8. [Study and investigation of mechanism of atrial fibrillation--(II). Atrial fibrillation animal model and data analysis method].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Cuiying; Zhang, Shangjun

    2007-10-01

    The first thorny problem in the study of atrial fibrillation (AF) is the establishment of reliable animal models. This paper presents how to create a canine sterile pericarditis model. A new data analysis method, Fast Fourier Transform is introduced. The data from canine sterile pericarditis model was analyzed using FFT. The results demonstrate that canine sterile pericarditis model is a reliable animal model for studying AF and that FFT is a rapid and effective method for analyzing AF data. PMID:18027692

  9. Mean platelet volume is associated with the presence of left atrial stasis in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Mean platelet volume has been associated with stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation. However, its role as a predictor of left atrial stasis, assessed by transesophageal echocardiography, in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation has not yet been clarified. Methods Single center cross-sectional study comprising 427 patients admitted to the emergency department due to symptomatic atrial fibrillation and undergoing transesophageal echocardiogram evaluation for exclusion of left atrial appendage thrombus before cardioversion. All patients had a complete blood count performed in the 12 hours prior to transesophageal echocardiogram. Markers of left atrial stasis were sought: left atrial appendage thrombus, dense spontaneous echocardiographic contrast and low flow velocities in the left atrial appendage. The presence of at least one of the former markers of left atrial stasis was designated left atrial abnormality. Binary logistic multivariate analysis was used for obtaining models for the prediction of transesophageal echocardiogram endpoints. Results Left atrial appendage thrombus was found in 12.2%, dense spontaneous echocardiographic contrast in 29.7%, low flow velocities in 15.3% and left atrial abnormality in 34.2%. Mean platelet volume (exp β = 3.41 p = 0.048) alongside with previous stroke or transient ischemic attack (exp β = 5.35 p = 0.005) and troponin I (exp β = 5.07 p = 0.041) were independent predictors of left atrial appendage thrombus. Mean platelet volume was also incorporated in the predictive models of dense spontaneous echocardiographic contrast, low flow velocities and left atrial abnormality, adding predictive value to clinical, echocardiographic and laboratory variables. Conclusions These findings suggest that mean platelet volume may be associated with the presence of markers of left atrial stasis, reinforcing a likely cardioembolic mechanism for its association with stroke in patients with non

  10. [Total Endoscopic Left Atrial Appendectomy for Valvular Atrial Fibrillation;Report of a Case].

    PubMed

    Kurahashi, Kanan; Inoue, Takafumi; Yoshimoto, Akihiro; Fujisaki, Masayuki; Morisumi, Sei; Ohtsuka, Toshiya; Suematsu, Yoshihiko

    2016-06-01

    Total endoscopic left atrial appendectomy for non-valvular atrial fibrillation(Af) has been reported to be a safe and effective procedure to prevent cardiogenic thromboembolism and also discontinue oral anticoagulant therapy. On the other hand, open-heart surgery is generally indicated for valvular Af. We report the case of a 67-year-old male patient with valvular Af and recurrent episodes of cardiogenic thromboembolism who underwent total endoscopic left atrial appendectomy. He was diagnosed as having mitral valve stenosis and scheduled for surgery, but presented with cerebellar hemorrhage after warfarin was replaced with heparin in the preoperative phase. Consequently, the operation was cancelled. The case was considered as a good relative indication for total endoscopic left atrial appendectomy, which does not need a cardiopulmonary bypass, to prevent future cardiogenic thromboembolism. The operation was performed and the postoperative course was uneventful. PMID:27246134

  11. Cryoballoon or Radiofrequency Ablation for Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Kuck, Karl-Heinz; Brugada, Josep; Fürnkranz, Alexander; Metzner, Andreas; Ouyang, Feifan; Chun, K R Julian; Elvan, Arif; Arentz, Thomas; Bestehorn, Kurt; Pocock, Stuart J; Albenque, Jean-Paul; Tondo, Claudio

    2016-06-01

    Background Current guidelines recommend pulmonary-vein isolation by means of catheter ablation as treatment for drug-refractory paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. Radiofrequency ablation is the most common method, and cryoballoon ablation is the second most frequently used technology. Methods We conducted a multicenter, randomized trial to determine whether cryoballoon ablation was noninferior to radiofrequency ablation in symptomatic patients with drug-refractory paroxysmal atrial fibrillation. The primary efficacy end point in a time-to-event analysis was the first documented clinical failure (recurrence of atrial fibrillation, occurrence of atrial flutter or atrial tachycardia, use of antiarrhythmic drugs, or repeat ablation) following a 90-day period after the index ablation. The noninferiority margin was prespecified as a hazard ratio of 1.43. The primary safety end point was a composite of death, cerebrovascular events, or serious treatment-related adverse events. Results A total of 762 patients underwent randomization (378 assigned to cryoballoon ablation and 384 assigned to radiofrequency ablation). The mean duration of follow-up was 1.5 years. The primary efficacy end point occurred in 138 patients in the cryoballoon group and in 143 in the radiofrequency group (1-year Kaplan-Meier event rate estimates, 34.6% and 35.9%, respectively; hazard ratio, 0.96; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.76 to 1.22; P<0.001 for noninferiority). The primary safety end point occurred in 40 patients in the cryoballoon group and in 51 patients in the radiofrequency group (1-year Kaplan-Meier event rate estimates, 10.2% and 12.8%, respectively; hazard ratio, 0.78; 95% CI, 0.52 to 1.18; P=0.24). Conclusions In this randomized trial, cryoballoon ablation was noninferior to radiofrequency ablation with respect to efficacy for the treatment of patients with drug-refractory paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, and there was no significant difference between the two methods with regard to

  12. Left atrial strain: A useful index in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Cameli, Matteo; Mandoli, Giulia Elena; Loiacono, Ferdinando; Sparla, Stefania; Iardino, Elisabetta; Mondillo, Sergio

    2016-10-01

    Left atrial (LA) strain is a speckle tracking echocardiography (STE)-derived parameter applied to the analysis of chamber function that provides highly reproducible measures of LA deformation by a non-Doppler, angle-independent quantification. In recent years, data regarding accuracy and clinical application of LA strain are rapidly increasing. This review describes the main features of LA strain and examines the role of STE in the evaluation of various aspects of AF, as the risk of developing the arrhythmia in general population, the evaluation of LA fibrosis and LA impairment, the quantification of cardioembolic risk and of recurrence after cardioversion or ablation therapies. PMID:27389443

  13. [Catheter-based closure of the left atrial appendage : Stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation].

    PubMed

    Skurk, C; Leistner, D M; Park, J-W; Landmesser, U

    2016-09-01

    In patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation, >90 % of thrombi are detected in the left atrial appendage (LAA). In particular these observations have resulted in the development of catheter-based LAA closure as an approach for stroke prevention in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation in recent years. A preliminary randomized trial provided promising data with respect to efficacy and safety of this approach as compared to anticoagulation with warfarin. The safety of the procedure has been significantly improved in recent years due to procedural experience and refinement of implanted devices. In current clinical practice, this approach is particularly used for patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation, a significant ischemic risk (CHA2DS2-VASc score ≥2), and a high bleeding risk, i. e., in patients in whom there are relevant concerns with respect to long-term anticoagulation. The present article discusses the data from randomized clinical studies and registries, the present guideline recommendations, and the practical clinical use of LAA closure for stroke prevention. PMID:27534868

  14. Do left atrial appendage morphology and function help predict thromboembolic risk in atrial fibrillation?

    PubMed

    Anselmino, Matteo; Gili, Sebastiano; Castagno, Davide; Ferraris, Federico; Matta, Mario; Rovera, Chiara; Giustetto, Carla; Gaita, Fiorenzo

    2016-03-01

    Clinical scores (i.e. CHA2DS2-VASc) are the mainstay of thromboembolic risk management in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Nonetheless, they bear some limitations to precisely define risk-benefit ratio of oral anticoagulation (OAC), both with vitamin K antagonists and with novel direct oral anticoagulants, especially in patients with low-intermediate scores. Cardiovascular imaging, allowing directly visualization of those pathophysiological alterations, which may lead to the formation of intracardiac thrombi, offers itself as a unique tool helping to refine thromboembolic risk stratification. Many parameters have been tested, focusing primarily on functional and morphological variables of the left atrium and left atrial appendage (LAA). Left atrium volume and LAA peak flow velocity have, for a longtime, been associated with increased thromboembolic risk, whereas some new parameters, such as left atrium fibrosis assessed by late-gadolinium enhanced (LGE) MRI, left atrium and LAA strain and LAA morphology have more recently shown some ability in predicting embolic events in atrial fibrillation patients. Overall, however, these parameters have seen, to date, scarce clinical implementation, especially because of the inconsistency of validated cutoffs and/or strong clinical evidence driven by technical limitations, such as expensiveness of the technologies (i.e. MRI or computed tomography), invasiveness (i.e. transesophageal echocardiography) or limited reproducibility (i.e. LGE MRI). In conclusion, to date, cardiovascular imaging plays a limited role; however, validation and diffusion of the new techniques hereby systematically presented hold the potential to refine thromboembolic risk stratification in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. PMID:26556443

  15. Outcomes after ablation for typical atrial flutter (from the Loire Valley Atrial Fibrillation Project).

    PubMed

    Clementy, Nicolas; Desprets, Laurent; Pierre, Bertrand; Lallemand, Bénédicte; Simeon, Edouard; Brunet-Bernard, Anne; Babuty, Dominique; Fauchier, Laurent

    2014-11-01

    Similar predisposing factors are found in most types of atrial arrhythmias. The incidence of atrial fibrillation (AF) among patients with atrial flutter is high, suggesting similar outcomes in patients with those arrhythmias. We sought to investigate the long-term outcomes and prognostic factors of patients with AF and/or atrial flutter with contemporary management using radiofrequency ablation. In an academic institution, we retrospectively examined the clinical course of 8,962 consecutive patients admitted to our department with a diagnosis of AF and/or atrial flutter. After a median follow-up of 934 ± 1,134 days, 1,155 deaths and 715 stroke and/thromboembolic (TE) events were recorded. Patients with atrial flutter undergoing cavotricuspid isthmus ablation (n = 875, 37% with a history of AF) had a better survival rate than other patients (hazard ratio [HR] 0.35, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.25 to 0.49, p <0.0001). Using Cox proportional hazards model and propensity score model, after adjustment for main other confounders, ablation for atrial flutter was significantly associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality (HR 0.55, 95% CI 0.36 to 0.84, p = 0.006) and stroke and/or TE events (HR 0.53, 95% CI 0.30 to 0.92, p = 0.02). After ablation, there was no significant difference in the risk of TE between patients with a history of AF and those with atrial flutter alone (HR 0.83, 95% CI 0.41 to 1.67, p = 0.59). In conclusion, in patients with atrial tachyarrhythmias, those with atrial flutter with contemporary management who undergo cavotricuspid isthmus radiofrequency ablation independently have a lower risk of stroke and/or TE events and death of any cause, whether a history of AF is present or not. PMID:25200340

  16. Association of Atrial Fibrillation with Morphological and Electrophysiological Changes of the Atrial Myocardium.

    PubMed

    Matějková, Adéla; Šteiner, Ivo

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained cardiac arrhythmia. For long time it was considered as pure functional disorder, but in recent years, there were identified atrial locations, which are involved in the initiation and maintenance of this arrhythmia. These structural changes, so called remodelation, start at electric level and later they affect contractility and morphology. In this study we attempted to find a possible relation between morphological (scarring, amyloidosis, left atrial (LA) enlargement) and electrophysiological (ECG features) changes in patients with AF. We examined grossly and histologically 100 hearts of necropsy patients - 54 with a history of AF and 46 without AF. Premortem ECGs were evaluated. The patients with AF had significantly heavier heart, larger LA, more severely scarred myocardium of the LA and atrial septum, and more severe amyloidosis in both atria. Severity of amyloidosis was higher in LAs vs. right atria (RAs). Distribution of both fibrosis and amyloidosis was irregular. The most affected area was in the LA anterior wall. Patients with a history of AF and with most severe amyloidosis have more often abnormally long P waves. Finding of long P wave may contribute to diagnosis of a hitherto undisclosed atrial fibrillation. PMID:27526304

  17. Diagnostic Evaluation and Follow-Up of Patients with Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Dillon, Patrick; Ghanbari, Hamid

    2016-04-01

    In this article, a review of the diagnostic evaluation and outpatient follow-up of patients with atrial fibrillation is presented. After exploring details of symptoms, past medical history, quality of life, and physical exam findings, diagnostic tools are then discussed. Furthermore, important considerations after the initial diagnosis and treatment of patients with atrial fibrillation are discussed. PMID:26968664

  18. Novel P Wave Indices to Predict Atrial Fibrillation Recurrence After Radiofrequency Ablation for Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiaoliang; Jiang, Jingzhou; Ma, Yuedong; Tang, Anli

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Circumferential pulmonary vein isolation (CPVI) is a widely used treatment for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF). Several P wave duration (PWD) parameters have been suggested to predict post-ablation recurrence, but their use remains controversial. This study aimed to identify novel P wave indices that predict post-ablation AF recurrence. MATERIAL AND METHODS We selected 171 consecutive patients undergoing CPVI for paroxysmal AF. Electrocardiography (ECG) recordings were obtained at the beginning and the end of ablation. PWD was measured in all 12 leads. The PWD variation was calculated by subtracting the pre-ablation PWD from the post-ablation PWD. RESULTS PWD was significantly shortened in leads II, III, aVF, and V1 after ablation. During a mean follow-up of 19.96±4.32 months, AF recurrence occurred in 32 (18.7%) patients. No significant differences in baseline characteristics or pre- or post-ablation PWD were observed between the AF recurrence and non-recurrence groups. Patients with AF recurrence exhibited a smaller PWD variation in leads II (1.21(-0.56, 2.40) vs. -5.77(-9.10, -4.06) ms, P<0.001), III (-5.92(-9.87, 3.27) vs. -9.44(-11.89, -5.57) ms, P=0.001) and V1 (-4.43(-6.64, -3.13) vs. -6.33(-8.19,-4.59) ms, P=0.003). Multivariable logistic regression analysis demonstrated that smaller PWD variations in lead II and III were independent risk factors for AF recurrence. PWD variation ≥-2.21 ms in lead II displayed the highest combined sensitivity and specificity (85.29% and 83.94%, respectively) for predicting post-ablation AF recurrence. A PWD variation ≥0 ms displayed the best practical value in predicting AF recurrence. CONCLUSIONS PWD variation in lead II is an effective predictor of post-ablation AF recurrence. PMID:27450644

  19. Novel P Wave Indices to Predict Atrial Fibrillation Recurrence After Radiofrequency Ablation for Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Xiaoliang; Jiang, Jingzhou; Ma, Yuedong; Tang, Anli

    2016-01-01

    Background Circumferential pulmonary vein isolation (CPVI) is a widely used treatment for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF). Several P wave duration (PWD) parameters have been suggested to predict post-ablation recurrence, but their use remains controversial. This study aimed to identify novel P wave indices that predict post-ablation AF recurrence. Material/Methods We selected 171 consecutive patients undergoing CPVI for paroxysmal AF. Electrocardiography (ECG) recordings were obtained at the beginning and the end of ablation. PWD was measured in all 12 leads. The PWD variation was calculated by subtracting the pre-ablation PWD from the post-ablation PWD. Results PWD was significantly shortened in leads II, III, aVF, and V1 after ablation. During a mean follow-up of 19.96±4.32 months, AF recurrence occurred in 32 (18.7%) patients. No significant differences in baseline characteristics or pre- or post-ablation PWD were observed between the AF recurrence and non-recurrence groups. Patients with AF recurrence exhibited a smaller PWD variation in leads II (1.21(−0.56, 2.40) vs. −5.77(−9.10, −4.06) ms, P<0.001), III (−5.92(−9.87, 3.27) vs. −9.44(−11.89, −5.57) ms, P=0.001) and V1 (−4.43(−6.64, −3.13) vs. −6.33(−8.19,−4.59) ms, P=0.003). Multivariable logistic regression analysis demonstrated that smaller PWD variations in lead II and III were independent risk factors for AF recurrence. PWD variation ≥−2.21 ms in lead II displayed the highest combined sensitivity and specificity (85.29% and 83.94%, respectively) for predicting post-ablation AF recurrence. A PWD variation ≥0 ms displayed the best practical value in predicting AF recurrence. Conclusions PWD variation in lead II is an effective predictor of post-ablation AF recurrence. PMID:27450644

  20. Optimal Duration of Monitoring for Atrial Fibrillation in Cryptogenic Stroke: A Nonsystematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Hariri, Essa; Hachem, Ahmad; Sarkis, Georges; Nasr, Samer

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common form of cardiac arrhythmias and an independent risk factor for stroke. Despite major advances in monitoring strategies, clinicians tend to miss the diagnoses of AF and especially paroxysmal AF due mainly to its asymptomatic presentation and the rather limited duration dedicated for monitoring for AF after a stroke, which is 24 hours as per the current recommended guidelines. Hence, determining the optimal duration of monitoring for paroxysmal atrial fibrillation after acute ischemic stroke remains a matter of debate. Multiple trials were published in regard to this matter using both invasive and noninvasive monitoring strategies for different monitoring periods. The data provided by these trials showcase strong evidence suggesting a longer monitoring strategy beyond 24 hours is associated with higher detection rates of AF, with the higher percentage of patients detected consequently receiving proper secondary stroke prevention with anticoagulation and thus justifying the cost-effectiveness of such measures. Overall, we thus conclude that increasing the monitoring duration for AF after a cryptogenic stroke to at least 72 hours will indeed enhance the detection rates, but the cost-effectiveness of this monitoring strategy compared to longer monitoring durations is yet to be established. PMID:27314027

  1. Subclinical atrial fibrillation and stroke: insights from continuous monitoring by implanted cardiac electronic devices.

    PubMed

    Lau, Chu-Pak; Siu, Chung-Wah; Yiu, Kai-Hang; Lee, Kathy Lai-Fun; Chan, Yap-Hang; Tse, Hung-Fat

    2015-10-01

    Nearly one out of five strokes is associated with atrial fibrillation (AF). Atrial fibrillation is often intermittent and asymptomatic. Detection of AF after cryptogenic stroke will likely change therapy from antiplatelet to oral anticoagulation agents for secondary stroke prevention. A critical step is to convert 'covert' AF into electrocardiogram documented AF. External rhythm recording devices have registered a high incidence of AF to occur after a cryptogenic stroke, but are limited by short duration of continuous recordings. Invasive cardiac monitoring using insertable leadless cardiac monitors are sensitive means to identify subclinical AF (SCAF) after cryptogenic stroke, and AF has been reported to occur in 8.9% of these patients by 6 months in one study. It will be more attractive to identify SCAF before a stroke occurs. Recent series in pacemaker and implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) recipients showed that short episodes of SCAF increased stroke risk, with odds ratio ∼2.2-3.1 compared with those without SCAF recorded. However, temporal sequence of recorded SCAF and stroke occurrence was uncertain, and the overall stroke risk was lower compared with patients with clinical AF at similar risk scores. This article reviews the incidence and clinical role of using implanted devices to detect SCAF and discusses the implication of SCAF so detected in primary and secondary stroke prevention. PMID:26842114

  2. Meta-analysis identifies six new susceptibility loci for atrial fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Ellinor, Patrick T; Lunetta, Kathryn L; Albert, Christine M; Glazer, Nicole L; Ritchie, Marylyn D; Smith, Albert V; Arking, Dan E; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Krijthe, Bouwe P; Lubitz, Steven A; Bis, Joshua C; Chung, Mina K; Dörr, Marcus; Ozaki, Kouichi; Roberts, Jason D; Smith, J Gustav; Pfeufer, Arne; Sinner, Moritz F; Lohman, Kurt; Ding, Jingzhong; Smith, Nicholas L; Smith, Jonathan D; Rienstra, Michiel; Rice, Kenneth M; Van Wagoner, David R; Magnani, Jared W; Wakili, Reza; Clauss, Sebastian; Rotter, Jerome I; Steinbeck, Gerhard; Launer, Lenore J; Davies, Robert W; Borkovich, Matthew; Harris, Tamara B; Lin, Honghuang; Völker, Uwe; Völzke, Henry; Milan, David J; Hofman, Albert; Boerwinkle, Eric; Chen, Lin Y; Soliman, Elsayed Z; Voight, Benjamin F; Li, Guo; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Kubo, Michiaki; Tedrow, Usha B; Rose, Lynda M; Ridker, Paul M; Conen, David; Tsunoda, Tatsuhiko; Furukawa, Tetsushi; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Xu, Siyan; Kamatani, Naoyuki; Levy, Daniel; Nakamura, Yusuke; Parvez, Babar; Mahida, Saagar; Furie, Karen L; Rosand, Jonathan; Muhammad, Raafia; Psaty, Bruce M; Meitinger, Thomas; Perz, Siegfried; Wichmann, H-Erich; Witteman, Jacqueline C M; Kao, W H Linda; Kathiresan, Sekar; Roden, Dan M; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Rivadeneira, Fernando; McKnight, Barbara; Sjögren, Marketa; Newman, Anne B; Liu, Yongmei; Gollob, Michael H; Melander, Olle; Tanaka, Toshihiro; Ch Stricker, Bruno H; Felix, Stephan B; Alonso, Alvaro; Darbar, Dawood; Barnard, John; Chasman, Daniel I; Heckbert, Susan R; Benjamin, Emelia J; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Kääb, Stefan

    2012-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is a highly prevalent arrhythmia and a major risk factor for stroke, heart failure and death1. We conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) in individuals of European ancestry, including 6,707 with and 52,426 without atrial fibrillation. Six new atrial fibrillation susceptibility loci were identified and replicated in an additional sample of individuals of European ancestry, including 5,381 subjects with and 1 0,030 subjects without atrial fibrillation (P < 5 × 10−8). Four of the loci identified in Europeans were further replicated in silico in a GWAS of Japanese individuals, including 843 individuals with and 3,350 individuals without atrial fibrillation. The identified loci implicate candidate genes that encode transcription factors related to cardiopulmonary development, cardiac-expressed ion channels and cell signaling molecules. PMID:22544366

  3. Atrial sensor, remote monitoring and new anticoagulant drugs: Identification and treatment of a patient with unknown and asymptomatic atrial flutter

    PubMed Central

    Quartieri, Fabio; Giacopelli, Daniele; Iori, Matteo; Bottoni, Nicola

    2015-01-01

    This case report describes how new tools and technologies can drive a different approach in the management of arrhythmic patients. An unknown and asymptomatic atrial flutter was detected by the atrial sensor mounted in a single lead implantable cardioverter defibrillator. Moreover daily remote monitoring of the device allowed early notification and prompt clinical reaction. Anticoagulant therapy onset, radiofrequency ablation and the following anticoagulant therapy removal were driven by the device data transmissions. PMID:26937114

  4. Assessment of atrial fibrosis for the rhythm control of atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Begg, Gordon A; Holden, Arun V; Lip, Gregory Y H; Plein, Sven; Tayebjee, Muzahir H

    2016-10-01

    Rhythm control of atrial fibrillation (AF) remains challenging, with modest long-term success rates. Atrial fibrosis has been associated with AF, but the clinical utility of assessment of this fibrosis has yet to be fully elucidated. In this paper we review the current state of understanding of the pathophysiology of atrial fibrosis in AF, and its impact upon the instigation and propagation of the arrhythmia. Fibrosis causes an increase in volume of dysfunctional extracellular matrix, and is associated with cellular alterations such as hypertrophy, apoptosis and membrane dysfunction within the atrial myocardium. In turn, these cause pathological alterations to atrial conduction, such as increased anisotropy, conduction block and re-entry, which can lead to AF. We review current methods of assessing atrial fibrosis and their impact upon the prediction of success of interventional rhythm control strategies such as ablation and cardioversion. We focus particularly on circulating biomarkers of fibrosis and scar formation; their role in the fibrotic process, and their value in the prediction of rhythm control success. We also review imaging and invasive electrocardiographic mapping techniques that may identify fibrosis, and again assess their potential predictive value. In this area there exist many unanswered questions, but further work will help to refine techniques to reliably identify and treat those patients who are most likely to benefit from rhythm control treatment strategies. PMID:27389440

  5. Atrial Tachycardias Arising from Ablation of Atrial Fibrillation: A Proarrhythmic Bump or an Antiarrhythmic Turn?

    PubMed Central

    Shah, Ashok J.; Jadidi, Amir; Liu, Xingpeng; Miyazaki, Shinsuke; Forclaz, Andrei; Nault, Isabelle; Rivard, Lena; Linton, Nick; Xhaet, Olivier; Derval, Nicolas; Sacher, Frederic; Bordachar, Pierre; Ritter, Philippe; Hocini, Meleze; Jais, Pierre; Haissaguerre, Michel

    2010-01-01

    The occurrence of atrial tachycardias (AT) is a direct function of the volume of atrial tissue ablated in the patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). Thus, the incidence of AT is highest in persistent AF patients undergoing stepwise ablation using the strategic combination of pulmonary vein isolation, electrogram based ablation and left atrial linear ablation. Using deductive mapping strategy, AT can be divided into three clinical categories viz. the macroreentry, the focal and the newly described localized reentry all of which are amenable to catheter ablation with success rate of 95%. Perimitral, roof dependent and cavotricuspid isthmus dependent AT involve large reentrant circuits which can be successfully ablated at the left mitral isthmus, left atrial roof and tricuspid isthmus respectively. Complete bidirectional block across the sites of linear ablation is a necessary endpoint. Focal and localized reentrant AT commonly originate from but are not limited to the septum, posteroinferior left atrium, venous ostia, base of the left atrial appendage and left mitral isthmus and they respond quickly to focal ablation. AT not only represents ablation-induced proarrhythmia but also forms a bridge between AF and sinus rhythm in longstanding AF patients treated successfully with catheter ablation. PMID:20379387

  6. Atrial Fibrillation and Hypertension: Mechanistic, Epidemiologic, and Treatment Parallels

    PubMed Central

    Ogunsua, Adedotun A.; Shaikh, Amir Y.; Ahmed, Mohamed; McManus, David D.

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an increasingly prevalent condition and the most common sustained arrhythmia encountered in ambulatory and hospital practice. Several clinical risk factors for AF include age, sex, valvular heart disease, obesity, sleep apnea, heart failure, and hypertension (HTN). Of all the risk factors, HTN is the most commonly encountered condition in patients with incident AF. Hypertension is associated with a 1.8-fold increase in the risk of developing new-onset AF and a 1.5-fold increase in the risk of progression to permanent AF. Hypertension predisposes to cardiac structural changes that influence the development of AF such as atrial remodeling. The renin angiotensin aldosterone system has been demonstrated to be a common mechanistic link in the pathogenesis of HTN and AF. Importantly, HTN is one of the few modifiable AF risk factors, and guideline-directed management of HTN may reduce the incidence of AF. PMID:27057292

  7. Atrial Fibrillation and Hypertension: Mechanistic, Epidemiologic, and Treatment Parallels.

    PubMed

    Ogunsua, Adedotun A; Shaikh, Amir Y; Ahmed, Mohamed; McManus, David D

    2015-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an increasingly prevalent condition and the most common sustained arrhythmia encountered in ambulatory and hospital practice. Several clinical risk factors for AF include age, sex, valvular heart disease, obesity, sleep apnea, heart failure, and hypertension (HTN). Of all the risk factors, HTN is the most commonly encountered condition in patients with incident AF. Hypertension is associated with a 1.8-fold increase in the risk of developing new-onset AF and a 1.5-fold increase in the risk of progression to permanent AF. Hypertension predisposes to cardiac structural changes that influence the development of AF such as atrial remodeling. The renin angiotensin aldosterone system has been demonstrated to be a common mechanistic link in the pathogenesis of HTN and AF. Importantly, HTN is one of the few modifiable AF risk factors, and guideline-directed management of HTN may reduce the incidence of AF. PMID:27057292

  8. Personalized management of atrial fibrillation: Proceedings from the fourth Atrial Fibrillation competence NETwork/European Heart Rhythm Association consensus conference.

    PubMed

    Kirchhof, Paulus; Breithardt, Günter; Aliot, Etienne; Al Khatib, Sana; Apostolakis, Stavros; Auricchio, Angelo; Bailleul, Christophe; Bax, Jeroen; Benninger, Gerlinde; Blomstrom-Lundqvist, Carina; Boersma, Lucas; Boriani, Giuseppe; Brandes, Axel; Brown, Helen; Brueckmann, Martina; Calkins, Hugh; Casadei, Barbara; Clemens, Andreas; Crijns, Harry; Derwand, Roland; Dobrev, Dobromir; Ezekowitz, Michael; Fetsch, Thomas; Gerth, Andrea; Gillis, Anne; Gulizia, Michele; Hack, Guido; Haegeli, Laurent; Hatem, Stephane; Häusler, Karl Georg; Heidbüchel, Hein; Hernandez-Brichis, Jessica; Jais, Pierre; Kappenberger, Lukas; Kautzner, Joseph; Kim, Steven; Kuck, Karl-Heinz; Lane, Deirdre; Leute, Angelika; Lewalter, Thorsten; Meyer, Ralf; Mont, Lluis; Moses, Gregory; Mueller, Markus; Münzel, Felix; Näbauer, Michael; Nielsen, Jens Cosedis; Oeff, Michael; Oto, Ali; Pieske, Burkert; Pisters, Ron; Potpara, Tatjana; Rasmussen, Lars; Ravens, Ursula; Reiffel, James; Richard-Lordereau, Isabelle; Schäfer, Herbert; Schotten, Ulrich; Stegink, Wim; Stein, Kenneth; Steinbeck, Gerhard; Szumowski, Lukasz; Tavazzi, Luigi; Themistoclakis, Sakis; Thomitzek, Karen; Van Gelder, Isabelle C; von Stritzky, Berndt; Vincent, Alphons; Werring, David; Willems, Stephan; Lip, Gregory Y H; Camm, A John

    2013-11-01

    The management of atrial fibrillation (AF) has seen marked changes in past years, with the introduction of new oral anticoagulants, new antiarrhythmic drugs, and the emergence of catheter ablation as a common intervention for rhythm control. Furthermore, new technologies enhance our ability to detect AF. Most clinical management decisions in AF patients can be based on validated parameters that encompass type of presentation, clinical factors, electrocardiogram analysis, and cardiac imaging. Despite these advances, patients with AF are still at increased risk for death, stroke, heart failure, and hospitalizations. During the fourth Atrial Fibrillation competence NETwork/European Heart Rhythm Association (AFNET/EHRA) consensus conference, we identified the following opportunities to personalize management of AF in a better manner with a view to improve outcomes by integrating atrial morphology and damage, brain imaging, information on genetic predisposition, systemic or local inflammation, and markers for cardiac strain. Each of these promising avenues requires validation in the context of existing risk factors in patients. More importantly, a new taxonomy of AF may be needed based on the pathophysiological type of AF to allow personalized management of AF to come to full fruition. Continued translational research efforts are needed to personalize management of this prevalent disease in a better manner. All the efforts are expected to improve the management of patients with AF based on personalized therapy. PMID:23981824

  9. Recurrence of atrial fibrillation within three months after pulmonary vein isolation for patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation: Analysis using external loop recorder with auto-trigger function

    PubMed Central

    Kawasaki, Shiro; Tanno, Kaoru; Ochi, Akinori; Inokuchi, Koichiro; Chiba, Yuta; Onishi, Yoshimi; Onuma, Yoshimasa; Munetsugu, Yumi; Kikuchi, Miwa; Ito, Hiroyuki; Onuki, Tatsuya; Miyoshi, Fumito; Minoura, Yoshino; Watanabe, Norikazu; Adachi, Taro; Asano, Taku; Kobayashi, Youichi

    2014-01-01

    Background Pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) via catheter ablation has been shown to be a highly effective treatment option for patients with symptomatic paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (AF). The recurrence of AF within 3 months after PVI is not considered to be the result of ablation procedure failure, because early recurrence of AF is not always associated with late recurrence. We examined the usefulness of an external loop recorder with an auto-trigger function (ELR-AUTO) for the detection of atrial fibrillation following PVI to characterize early recurrence and to determine the implications of AF occurrence within 3 months after PVI. Methods Fifty-three consecutive symptomatic patients with paroxysmal AF (age 61.6±12.6 years, 77% male) who underwent PVI and were fitted with ELR-AUTO for 7±2.0 days within 3 months after PVI were enrolled in this study. Results Of the 33 (62.2%) patients who did not have AF recurrence within 3 months after PVI, only 1 patient experienced AF recurrence at 12 months. Seven (35%) of the 20 patients who experienced AF within 3 months of PVI experienced symptomatic AF recurrence at 12 months. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of early AF recurrence for late recurrence were 87.5%, 71.1%, 35.0%, and 96.9%, respectively. Conclusions AF recurrence measured by ELR-AUTO within 3 months after PVI can predict the late recurrence of AF. Freedom from AF in the first 3 months following ablation significantly predicts long-term AF freedom. ELR-AUTO is useful for the detection of symptomatic and asymptomatic AF. PMID:26336538

  10. Novel mechanisms in the pathogenesis of atrial fibrillation: practical applications.

    PubMed

    Lau, Dennis H; Schotten, Ulrich; Mahajan, Rajiv; Antic, Nicholas A; Hatem, Stéphane N; Pathak, Rajeev K; Hendriks, Jeroen M L; Kalman, Jonathan M; Sanders, Prashanthan

    2016-05-21

    Intensive research over the last few decades has seen significant advances in our understanding of the complex mechanisms underlying atrial fibrillation (AF). The epidemic of AF and related hospitalizations has been described as a 'rising tide' with estimates of the global AF burden showing no sign of retreat. There is urgency for effective translational programs in this field to facilitate more individualized and targeted therapy to modify the abnormal atrial substrate responsible for the perpetuation of this arrhythmia. In this review, we chose to focus on several novel aspects of AF pathogenesis whereby practical applications in clinical practice are currently available or potentially not too far away. Specifically, we explored the contribution of atrial fibrosis, epicardial adipose tissue, autonomic nervous system, hyper-coagulability, and focal drivers to adverse atrial remodelling and AF persistence. We also highlighted the potential practical means of monitoring and targeting these factors to achieve better outcomes in patients suffering from this debilitating illness. Emerging data also support a new paradigm for targeting AF substrate with aggressive risk factor management. Finally, multi-disciplinary integrated care approach has shown great promise in improving cardiovascular outcomes of patients with AF along with potential cost savings. PMID:26578197

  11. Ablating atrial fibrillation: A translational science perspective for clinicians.

    PubMed

    Weiss, James N; Qu, Zhilin; Shivkumar, Kalyanam

    2016-09-01

    Although considerable progress has been made in developing ablation approaches to cure atrial fibrillation (AF), outcomes are still suboptimal, especially for persistent and long-lasting persistent AF. In this topical review, we review the arrhythmia mechanisms, both reentrant and nonreentrant, that are potentially relevant to human AF at various stages/settings. We describe arrhythmia mapping techniques used to distinguish between the different mechanisms, with a particular focus on the detection of rotors. We discuss which arrhythmia mechanisms are likely to respond to ablation, and the challenges and prospects for improving upon current ablation strategies to achieve better outcomes. PMID:27241354

  12. The importance of interactions between atrial fibrillation and heart failure.

    PubMed

    Khan, Muhammad A; Satchithananda, Duwarakan K; Mamas, Mamas A

    2016-06-01

    Heart failure (HF) and atrial fibrillation (AF) are among the commonest cardiovascular conditions encountered in clinical practice and frequently coexist. Over the last decade, they have evolved into global cardiovascular epidemics. This, in turn, has huge clinical and economic implications. There is ample evidence that AF and HF have a mutually deleterious effect on each other. AF is not only a marker of HF severity but also affects HF prognosis independently. This article presents the close pathophysiological relationship between AF and HF and the adverse prognostic consequences of this bidirectional interaction. The scope of various therapeutic modalities and their potential impacts are discussed briefly. PMID:27251919

  13. Emerging Tools for Stroke Prevention in Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Voukalis, Christos; Lip, Gregory Y.H.; Shantsila, Eduard

    2016-01-01

    Ischaemic strokes resulting from atrial fibrillation (AF) constitute a devastating condition for patients and their carers with huge burden on health care systems. Prophylactic treatment against systemic embolization and ischaemic strokes is the cornerstone for the management of AF. Effective stroke prevention requires the use of the vitamin K antagonists or non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (NOACs). This article summarises the latest developments in the field of stroke prevention in AF and aims to assist physicians with the choice of oral anticoagulant for patients with non-valvular AF with different risk factor profile. PMID:26981569

  14. Pathophysiology of cancer therapy-provoked atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Wan-Li; Kao, Yu-Hsun; Chen, Shih-Ann; Chen, Yi-Jen

    2016-09-15

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) occurs with increased frequency in cancer patients, especially in patients who undergo surgery or chemotherapy. AF disturbs the prognosis of cancer patients and challenges therapeutic outcomes of cancer treatment. Elucidating the mechanisms of cancer-induced AF would help identify specific strategies for preventing AF occurrence. In addition to concurrent risk factors of cancer and AF, cancer surgery, side effects of anticancer agents, and cancer-associated immune responses play critical roles in the genesis of AF. In this review, we provide succinct potential mechanisms of AF genesis in cancer patients. PMID:27327505

  15. Ablation Technology for the Surgical Treatment of Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Melby, Spencer J.; Schuessler, Richard B.; Damiano, Ralph J.

    2014-01-01

    The Cox maze procedure for the surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation has been simplified from its original cut-and-sew technique. Various energy sources now exist which create linear lines of ablation that can be used to replace the original incisions, greatly facilitating the surgical approach. This review article describes the anatomy of the atria that must be considered in choosing a successful energy source. Furthermore the device characteristics, safety profile, mechanism of tissue injury, and ability to create transmural lesions of the various energy sources that have been used in the Cox maze procedure, along with the strengths and weaknesses of each device is discussed. PMID:23995989

  16. Omega 3 and atrial fibrillation: Where are we?

    PubMed Central

    Martino, Annamaria; Pezzi, Laura; Magnano, Roberta; Salustri, Elisa; Penco, Maria; Calo’, Leonardo

    2016-01-01

    Anti-arrhythmic properties of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, at least in part mediated by anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic power, have been widely proved. Effect of fish oil on atrial fibrillation, both in primary and in secondary prevention and after cardiac surgery, are controversial, mostly due to lack of homogeneity between studies but also due to individual variability in response to fatty acids administration. Inclusion of measurement of incorporation of fish oil into cell membranes, appears to be essential in future studies, to assess their antiarrhythmic effect. PMID:26981208

  17. Regorafenib-Related Myocardial Injury during Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Hsiao, Fu-Chih; Yeh, Chun-Nan; Chu, Pao-Hsien

    2016-01-01

    Multikinase inhibitors with an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor effect have been reported to increase the risk of myocardial infarction or ischemia. We have presented the case of a 72-year-old male who had a metastatic gastrointestinal stromal tumor for which he received targeted therapy and who was admitted to our hospital for recurrent episodes of myocardial injury during atrial fibrillation. Coronary angiography showed insignificant coronary artery stenosis. We also reviewed the incidence of cardiovascular events in patients receiving regorafenib, and the current understanding of the mechanism of targeted therapy-induced myocardial ischemia/infarction. PMID:27122956

  18. Mechanisms of Atrial Fibrillation: Rotors, Ionic Determinants, and Excitation Frequency.

    PubMed

    Berenfeld, Omer; Jalife, José

    2016-04-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia; however, therapy is suboptimal. We review recent data on dynamics of wave propagation during AF and its mechanistic link to the substrate. Data show that the dominant frequency (DF) increase during transition to persistent AF may be explained by rotor acceleration. We discuss how translation of experimentally derived understanding of the rotors may find its way into the clinic, focusing on studies analyzing spatial distribution of DF in the atria of patients with paroxysmal versus persistent AF, and how that knowledge might contribute to improve the outcome of AF ablation procedures. PMID:26968663

  19. Targeting histone deacetylases: A novel therapeutic strategy for atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Lkhagva, Baigalmaa; Kao, Yu-Hsun; Chen, Yao-Chang; Chao, Tze-Fan; Chen, Shih-Ann; Chen, Yi-Jen

    2016-06-15

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia associated with high mortality and morbidity. Current treatments of AF have limited efficacy and considerable side effects. Histone deacetylases (HDACs) play critical roles in the pathophysiology of cardiovascular diseases and contribute to the genesis of AF. Therefore, HDAC inhibition may prove a novel therapeutic strategy for AF through upstream therapy and modifications of AF electrical and structural remodeling. In this review, we provide an update of the knowledge of the effects of HDACs and HDAC inhibitors on AF, and dissect potential underlying mechanisms. PMID:27089819

  20. Mechanisms of atrial fibrillation: rotors, ionic determinants, and excitation frequency.

    PubMed

    Berenfeld, Omer; Jalife, José

    2014-11-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia; however, therapy is suboptimal. We review recent data on dynamics of wave propagation during AF and its mechanistic link to the substrate. Data show that the dominant frequency (DF) increase during transition to persistent AF may be explained by rotor acceleration. We discuss how translation of experimentally derived understanding of the rotors may find its way into the clinic, focusing on studies analyzing spatial distribution of DF in the atria of patients with paroxysmal versus persistent AF, and how that knowledge might contribute to improve the outcome of AF ablation procedures. PMID:25443232

  1. Computational models of atrial cellular electrophysiology and calcium handling, and their role in atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Heijman, Jordi; Erfanian Abdoust, Pegah; Voigt, Niels; Nattel, Stanley; Dobrev, Dobromir

    2016-02-01

    The complexity of the heart makes an intuitive understanding of the relative contribution of ion channels, transporters and signalling pathways to cardiac electrophysiology challenging. Computational modelling of cardiac cellular electrophysiology has proven useful to integrate experimental findings, extrapolate results obtained in expression systems or animal models to other systems, test quantitatively ideas based on experimental data and provide novel hypotheses that are experimentally testable. While the bulk of computational modelling has traditionally been directed towards ventricular bioelectricity, increasing recognition of the clinical importance of atrial arrhythmias, particularly atrial fibrillation, has led to widespread efforts to apply computational approaches to understanding atrial electrical function. The increasing availability of detailed, atrial-specific experimental data has stimulated the development of novel computational models of atrial-cellular electrophysiology and Ca(2+) handling. To date, more than 300 studies have employed mathematical simulations to enhance our understanding of atrial electrophysiology, arrhythmogenesis and therapeutic responses. Future modelling studies are likely to move beyond current whole-cell models by incorporating new data on subcellular architecture, macromolecular protein complexes, and localized ion-channel regulation by signalling pathways. At the same time, more integrative multicellular models that take into account regional electrophysiological and Ca(2+) handling properties, mechano-electrical feedback and/or autonomic regulation will be needed to investigate the mechanisms governing atrial arrhythmias. A combined experimental and computational approach is expected to provide the more comprehensive understanding of atrial arrhythmogenesis that is required to develop improved diagnostic and therapeutic options. Here, we review this rapidly expanding area, with a particular focus on Ca(2+) handling, and

  2. Incidence and prognostic significance of atrial fibrillation in acute myocardial infarction: the GISSI-3 data

    PubMed Central

    Pizzetti, F; Turazza, F; Franzosi, M; Barlera, S; Ledda, A; Maggioni, A; Santoro, L; Tognoni, G

    2001-01-01

    BACKGROUND—Atrial fibrillation is the most common supraventricular arrhythmia in patients with acute myocardial infarction. Recent advances in pharmacological treatment of myocardial infarction may have changed the impact of this arrhythmia.
OBJECTIVE—To assess the incidence and prognosis of atrial fibrillation complicating myocardial infarction in a large population of patients receiving optimal treatment, including angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors.
METHODS—Data were derived from the GISSI-3 trial, which included 17 944 patients within the first 24 hours after acute myocardial infarction. Atrial fibrillation was recorded during the hospital stay, and follow up visits were planned at six weeks and six months. Survival of the patients at four years was assessed through census offices.
RESULTS—The incidence of in-hospital atrial fibrillation or flutter was 7.8%. Atrial fibrillation was associated with indicators of a worse prognosis (age > 70 years, female sex, higher Killip class, previous myocardial infarction, treated hypertension, high systolic blood pressure at entry, insulin dependent diabetes, signs or symptoms of heart failure) and with some adverse clinical events (reinfarction, sustained ventricular tachycardia, ventricular fibrillation). After adjustment for other prognostic factors, atrial fibrillation remained an independent predictor of increased in-hospital mortality: 12.6% v 5%, adjusted relative risk (RR) 1.98, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.67 to 2.34. Data on long term mortality (four years after acute myocardial infarction) confirmed the persistent negative influence of atrial fibrillation (RR 1.78, 95% CI 1.60 to 1.99).
CONCLUSIONS—Atrial fibrillation is an indicator of worse prognosis after acute myocardial infarction, both in the short term and in the long term, even in an unselected population.


Keywords: atrial fibrillation; acute myocardial infarction; prognosis PMID:11602545

  3. Novel oral Anticoagulants in Non-Valvular Atrial Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Rose M.F.L.

    2014-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation is the most frequent arrhythmia in clinical practice, reaching 2% of the people in the world and is associated with systemic embolism. Thus, the use of anticoagulants is indicated if CHA2DS2-VASc score ≥2 or in patients with previous transient ischemic attack or stroke. For decades, warfarin, a vitamin K antagonist, was the only choice for chronic oral anticoagulation. Recently, novel oral anticoagulants (NOACs) have been introduced, offering similar (or better) effectiveness, safety, and convenience to the vitamin K antagonists. Dabigatran was the first NOAC approved and is a direct thrombin inhibitor. Rivaroxaban and apixaban are factor Xa inhibitors. They display rapid onset of action, more predictable of pharmacological profile, less interactions with other drugs, lack of significant effects in the diet, and less risk of intracranial hemorrhage than warfarin. Despite that dose adjustment is necessary for patients with chronic kidney disease or according to body weight, these new drugs do not require regular monitoring. There are recommendations for the start and follow-up therapy with NOACs, planning for cardioversion, ablation and surgical interventions and the management of bleeding. This article is a review of the major studies of the NOACs. The clinical use of these drugs in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation is presented. PMID:25470147

  4. Dabigatran in atrial fibrillation: pharmacology and clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Ezekowitz, Michael D; Nagarakanti, Rangadham

    2011-12-01

    The central pharmacologic approach to stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation has recently changed with the approval of dabigatran by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Dabigatran is an oral anticoagulant that belongs to the class of direct thrombin inhibitors. Dabigatran has predictable pharmacokinetics, without significant drug and food interactions, rapid onset, and requires twice-daily administration without the need for monitoring. The only drug contraindicated with dabigatran is rifampin. In the Randomized Evaluation of Long-Term Anticoagulation Therapy (RE-LY) trial, dabigatran at a dose of 150 mg bid is statistically superior to warfarin in preventing strokes and systemic embolism in patients with atrial fibrillation and has a lower non-statistically significant rate of major bleeding. There is significantly lower rate of intracranial bleeding. The FDA recently approved the 150-mg bid dose for patients with a creatinine clearance above 30 mL/min and 75 mg bid for use in patients with a creatinine clearance of 15 to 30 mL/min. A prespecified subanalysis in both warfarin-experienced and warfarin-naive subgroups mirrored the main results. For cardioversions, a post hoc analysis showed that the rate of thromboembolism and major bleeding within 30 days of cardioversion for dabigatran 150 mg bid was low and comparable to that of warfarin, with or without transesophageal echocardiography guidance. Dabigatran, therefore, is the first novel anticoagulant to offer an alternative to warfarin. PMID:21717198

  5. Fiber photo-catheters for laser treatment of atrial fibrillation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peshko, Igor; Rubtsov, Vladimir; Vesselov, Leonid; Sigal, Gennady; Laks, Hillel

    2007-04-01

    A fiber photo-catheter has been developed for surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation with laser radiation. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a heart rhythm abnormality, which involves irregular and rapid heartbeats. Recent studies demonstrate the superiority of treating AF disease with optical radiation of the near-infrared region. To produce long continuous transmural lesions, solid-state lasers and laser diodes, along with end-emitting fiber catheters, have been used experimentally. The absence of side-emitting flexible catheters with the ability to produce long continuous lesions limits the further development of this technology. In this research, a prototype of an optical catheter, consisting of a flexible 10-cm fiber diffuser has been used to make continuous photocoagulation lesions for effective maze procedure treatments. The system also includes a flexible optical reflector, a series of openings for rapid self-attachment to the tissue, and an optional closed-loop irrigating chamber with circulating saline to cool the optical diffuser and irrigate the tissue.

  6. Automatic detection of atrial fibrillation in cardiac vibration signals.

    PubMed

    Brueser, C; Diesel, J; Zink, M D H; Winter, S; Schauerte, P; Leonhardt, S

    2013-01-01

    We present a study on the feasibility of the automatic detection of atrial fibrillation (AF) from cardiac vibration signals (ballistocardiograms/BCGs) recorded by unobtrusive bedmounted sensors. The proposed system is intended as a screening and monitoring tool in home-healthcare applications and not as a replacement for ECG-based methods used in clinical environments. Based on BCG data recorded in a study with 10 AF patients, we evaluate and rank seven popular machine learning algorithms (naive Bayes, linear and quadratic discriminant analysis, support vector machines, random forests as well as bagged and boosted trees) for their performance in separating 30 s long BCG epochs into one of three classes: sinus rhythm, atrial fibrillation, and artifact. For each algorithm, feature subsets of a set of statistical time-frequency-domain and time-domain features were selected based on the mutual information between features and class labels as well as first- and second-order interactions among features. The classifiers were evaluated on a set of 856 epochs by means of 10-fold cross-validation. The best algorithm (random forests) achieved a Matthews correlation coefficient, mean sensitivity, and mean specificity of 0.921, 0.938, and 0.982, respectively. PMID:23086532

  7. Antithrombotic therapy in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation: a narrative review.

    PubMed

    Sá, Susana P D; Rodrigues, Rui P; Santos-Antunes, João; Rocha Gonçalves, Francisco; Nunes, José Pedro L

    2011-12-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an important and potentially modifiable cause of stroke. It has been known since 1989 that oral anticoagulant drugs, such as warfarin, lead to a dramatic decrease in stroke associated with AF. The best risk-benefit ratio is obtained with intensity of oral anticoagulant treatment for an INR of 2-3, even in the elderly. Given the risks of anticoagulant therapy, including bleeding, individual thromboembolic risk must be assessed in patients with AF. In 2009, dabigatran was shown to be a reasonable alternative to vitamin K antagonists, establishing itself as a major alternative to warfarin in AF patients. Rivaroxaban and apixaban have subsequently also been shown to be alternatives to warfarin. When there are contraindications to vitamin K antagonists, antiplatelet agents can produce a therapeutic effect, although much less than oral anticoagulants. Apixaban may be a better alternative to aspirin in this setting. Patients with low-risk atrial fibrillation (no risk factors) have not been the subjects of specific clinical trials. It is unclear what would be the best therapeutic choice for these patients. PMID:22094310

  8. Recovery of atrial systolic function after pharmacological conversion of chronic atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm: a Doppler echocardiographic study.

    PubMed Central

    Jović, A.; Troskot, R.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the time course of the recovery of atrial mechanical function after pharmacological cardioversion of chronic atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm. PATIENTS AND METHODS: 21 patients (12 male, 9 female, aged 37-77 years) with chronic atrial fibrillation (< 6 months) were followed up by serial transmitral pulsed Doppler echocardiography. Echocardiographic studies were performed within the first 24 hours and on day 8, 15, and 30 after cardioversion. RESULTS: There was a significant increase (mean (SD)) in the peak A-wave velocity (from 0.35 (0.10) on day 1 to 0.50 (1.73) on day 8, and thereafter a gradual increase to 0.61 (0.14) m/s on day 30). Similarly, integrated late atrial velocities increased from 4.50 (1.46) on day 1 to 5.61 (1.73) on day 8 and 5.97 (1.47) cm/s2 on day 30. The atrial contribution to total transmitral flow increased significantly from 26 (7)% immediately after conversion of atrial fibrillation to sinus rhythm to 34 (7)% on day 30, indicating the haemodynamic benefit of the restoration of sinus rhythm. Left atrial diameter decreased but not significantly, from 4.11 (0.37) to 3.98 (0.34) cm (P < 0.005). CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that restoration of atrial mechanical function after pharmacological cardioversion in patients with chronic atrial fibrillation is slow and gradual, as it is after electrical DC restoration of sinus rhythm. This time course may have important implications for determining how long treatment with anticoagulants and antiarrhythmic agents needs to continue in individual patients. It will also influence the clinical assessment of the haemodynamic benefit of restoring sinus rhythm in patients with chronic atrial fibrillation. Images PMID:9038694

  9. Totally implantable robot to treat chronic atrial fibrillation.

    PubMed

    Tozzi, Piergiorgio; Hayoz, Daniel; Thévenaz, Pierrick; Roulet, Jean-Yves; Salchli, Francois; von Segesser, Ludwig K

    2008-09-01

    Chronic atrial fibrillation affects millions of people worldwide. Its surgical treatment often fails to restore the transport function of the atrium. This study first introduces the concept of an atrial assist device (AAD) to restore the pump function of the atrium. The AAD is developed to be totally implantable in the human body with a transcutaneous energy transfer system to recharge the implanted battery. The ADD consists of a motorless pump based on artificial muscle technology, positioned on the external surface of the atrium to compress it and restore its muscular activity. A bench model reproduces the function of a fibrillating atrium to assess the circulatory support that this pump can provide. Atripump (Nanopowers SA, Switzerland) is a dome-shaped silicone-coated nitinol actuator 5 mm high, sutured on the external surface of the atrium. A pacemaker-like control unit drives the actuator that compresses the atrium, providing the mechanical support to the blood circulation. Electrical characteristics: the system is composed of one actuator that needs a minimal tension of 15 V and has a maximum current of 1.5 A with a 50% duty cycle. The implantable rechargeable battery is made of a cell having the following specifications: nominal tension of a cell: 4.1 V, tension after 90% of discharge: 3.5 V, nominal capacity of a cell: 163 mA h. The bench model consists of an open circuit made of latex bladder 60 mm in diameter filled with water. The bladder is connected to a vertically positioned tube that is filled to different levels, reproducing changes in cardiac preload. The Atripump is placed on the outer surface of the bladder. Pressure, volume and temperature changes were recorded. The contraction rate was 1 Hz with a power supply of 12 V, 400 mA for 200 ms. Preload ranged from 15 to 21 cm H(2)O. Maximal silicone membrane temperature was 55 degrees C and maximal temperature of the liquid environment was 35 degrees C. The pump produced a maximal work of 16 x 10

  10. [Atrial fibrillation in Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. Development and therapy].

    PubMed

    Duckeck, W; Kuck, K H

    1993-02-01

    In patients with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome the accessory pathway may participate in various tachyarrhythmias thereby influencing symptoms and prognosis. Atrial fibrillation occurs in 10 to 32% of patients and may have life-threatening consequences by precipitating ventricular fibrillation in patients with rapid conduction due to an accessory pathway with short anterograde refractory period (< 250 ms). Pathogenesis of atrial fibrillation in the WPW syndrome and therapeutic options are reviewed in this presentation. Spontaneous degeneration of atrioventricular reentrant tachycardia has been reported to represent the most frequent mode of initiation of atrial fibrillation during electrophysiologic study (up to 64% of episodes). Hemodynamic changes during tachycardia may lead to increased sympathetic tone, hypoxemia or increased tension of the atrial wall, thus, triggering atrial fibrillation. Induction of reentrant tachycardia during electrophysiologic study also has shown to be strongly correlated to its clinical prevalence and is inducible in up to 77% of patients with atrial fibrillation. The pathogenesis and high incidence of atrial fibrillation in patients with WPW syndrome is related to presence and functional properties of the accessory pathway. After surgical excision or catheter ablation more than 90% of patients are free of this arrhythmia. Anterograde conduction properties of the pathway appear to be more important than retrograde properties. High incidence of atrial fibrillation is related to short anterograde refractory periods, and of note, this arrhythmia is rare (3%) in patients with concealed pathways. With intracardiac recordings, Jackman et al. could demonstrate atrial fibrillation due to micro-reentry originating in accessory pathway networks.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:8454253