Atrial Fibrillation and Heart Disease
Information on atrial fibrillation and abnormal heartbeat, including the causes, symptoms, and treatments.
Atrial flutter is an abnormality in the beating of the heart. Find out more.
Turning Off Your ICD - Topic Overview
How does your ICD help you?Your ICD can save your life.Your ICD (implantable cardioverter-defibrillator) is always checking your heart rate and rhythm. If the ICD detects a life-threatening rapid heart rhythm, it tries to slow the rhythm to get it back to normal. If the dangerous rhythm doesn't stop, the ICD sends an electrical shock to the heart to restore a normal rhythm. Your ICD may also work as a pacemaker. It can fix a heart rate that is too fast or too slow. It may do so without using a shock.Should you consider turning off your ICD?Even though an ICD can help fix heart rate or rhythm problems, you may not want this at the end of life. Many people consider turning off their ICD when their health goal changes from living longer to getting the most comfort possible at the end of life. The shocks the ICD delivers are painful. Not being shocked will make you more comfortable at the end of life. As you plan for your future and your end of life, include plans for your ICD. The
Atrial Fibrillation - Prevention
A healthy lifestyle, proper nutrition, treatment for high blood pressure, and other measures can prevent atrial fibrillation by protecting you from heart disease. Do not smoke, try to lower your stress, exercise more, and control your blood pressure. Experts also recommend that adults eat at least two servings of fish per week, particularly fish such as salmon, trout, and tuna, for a healthy ...
Atrial Fibrillation - Symptoms
Symptoms of atrial fibrillation include:Heart palpitations.Irregular pulse.Shortness of breath, especially during physical activity or emotional stress.Weakness, fatigue.Dizziness, confusion.Lightheadedness or fainting (syncope).Chest pain (angina).Atrial fibrillation is often discovered during routine medical checkups, because many people do not have symptoms. Others may notice an irregular ...
Atrial Fibrillation - Overview
What is atrial fibrillation?Atrial fibrillation (say “A - tree - uhl fih - bruh - LAY - shun”) is an irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia) that starts in the upper parts (atria) of the heart. Normally, the heart beats in a strong, steady rhythm. In atrial fibrillation, a problem with the heart’s electrical system causes the atria to quiver, or fibrillate. The quivering upsets the normal rhythm
Atrial Fibrillation - Living With Atrial Fibrillation
Since atrial fibrillation is often the result of an underlying heart condition, making changes to improve your heart condition will usually improve your overall health. Some of these changes include:Quitting smoking. Quitting smoking may be the most important step you can take to prevent coronary artery disease. For more information, see the topic Quitting Tobacco Use.Controlling your ...
Atrial Fibrillation - What Increases Your Risk
Risk factors for atrial fibrillation include:Age older than 60.Being white and male.Heart failure.Heart valve disease.High blood pressure.Coronary artery disease and heart attack.Obesity.4A family history of atrial fibrillation.5Surgery on the heart.A history of rheumatic fever.Infection, such as pneumonia or endocarditis.Lung disease, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ...
Atrial Fibrillation - Treatment Overview
Treating atrial fibrillation is important for several reasons. An irregular, rapidly beating heart can weaken the heart muscle and cause it to dilate or stretch out. This can increase your risk of developing heart failure or having chest pain or even a heart attack. Also, atrial fibrillation can greatly increase your risk of having a stroke. Many people are able to live full and active lives ...
Atrial Fibrillation - Frequently Asked Questions
Learning about atrial fibrillation:What is atrial fibrillation?What causes atrial fibrillation?What goes wrong in atrial fibrillation?What are the symptoms of atrial fibrillation?What increases my risk for atrial fibrillation?What else could be causing my symptoms?When do I need to see my doctor?Being diagnosed:How will my doctor diagnose atrial fibrillation?What is an electrocardiogram?Getting ..