By Trudie Lobban MBE, FRCP (Founder & CEO, Arrhythmia Alliance & AF Association) and Michael Wong, JD (Founder & Executive Director, Physician-Patient Alliance for Health & Safety)
Arrhythmia is when the heart rhythm is too slow, too fast, or beating in an irregular manner. The most common arrhythmia is Atrial Fibrillation (AF/AFib) symptoms may include – heart palpitations, fluttering in the chest, pounding heart, irregular heart rhythm or no symptoms at all. Some describe it like a bag of worms in their chest or banging of drums. If left undiagnosed and without anticoagulation therapy, it can lead to an AF-related stroke and even death.
Anticoagulation therapy helps to reduce blood clots forming in the chambers of the heart due to the irregular rhythm and traveling to the brain causing an AF-related stroke.
Treatments for AF exist to treat the symptoms from drugs to devices or ablation.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- 1 million people in the United States will have AFib in 2030.
- In 2019, AFib was mentioned on 183,321 death certificates and was the underlying cause of death in 26,535 of those deaths
Tragically, misconceptions or myths about AF may prevent people with AF from seeking medical care. Knowing these eight myths about AF can save your life or the life of a loved one and can certainly reduce the risk of an AF-related stroke.