Conditions & Treatments > Arrhythmias > Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial fibrillation is an erratic abnormal heart rhythm, originating in the top part of your heart.

Although there are ways to slow the heart rate down, it can be highly irregular and lead to both fast and slow heart beats.  Due to this, patient’s may experience an “irregular” heart beat and may have symptoms such as palpitations, dizziness, fatigue, etc.  Sometimes, patients may not experience any symptoms at all.

Unfortunately, atrial fibrillation and its related rhythms such as atrial flutter, can lead to an increased risk of stroke.  Management and treatment options are available such as blood thinners.  In addition there are procedures which can reduce this risk.  We advise that you speak with your doctor for what treatment is right for you.

For those patients that are symptomatic, who cannot tolerate or have failed medical therapy other treatments may be available to you.

  • Cardioversion: This is a procedure where after the patient is sedated an electrical shock is delivered in order to restore a normal heart rhythm.

  • Ablation:  An invasive procedure where catheters are inserted into the heart using minimally invasive techniques.  Then there are small targeted burns applied to specific areas of the heart in order to prevent atrial fibrillation from recurring.

Your doctor can provide you with more information on your options.

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