Atrial fibrillation, also known as AFib, happens when your normal heart beat or rhythm is changed and may not be able to pump enough blood. About 1% of Americans have AFib.
Millions of people with long-lasting AFib live quite well, said Gordon F. Tomaselli, MD, director of the Division of Cardiology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a past president of the American Heart Association. "It's very possible to live a normal life for many years."
If you or someone you know has been...
The quivering upsets the normal rhythm between the atria and the
lower parts of the heart, the ventricles. And the ventricles may beat fast and without a regular rhythm.
This is dangerous
because if the heartbeat isn't strong and steady, blood can
collect, or pool, in the atria. And pooled blood is more likely to form clots. Clots can travel to the brain, block blood flow, and cause a stroke.
Interactive Tool: What Is Your Risk for a Stroke if You Have Atrial Fibrillation?