Atrial Fibrillation

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Atrial Fibrillation


a cardiac arrhythmia whose basis is a disturbance in atrial activity. Atrial fibrillation often occurs with heart defects, cardiosclerosis, rheumatic endocarditis, and thyrotoxicosis, but there is no generally accepted theory to explain how it develops.

A distinction is made between paroxysmal and continuous atrial fibrillation. Continuous fibrillation may be tachyrhythmic (rapid), with a pulse of 90 to 150–180 beats per minute, or bradyrhythmic (slow), in which the pulse is never more than 60–80 beats per minute. The tachyrhythmic form is associated with sensations of palpitations, pounding, general excitement, and weakness. Patients with the bradyrhythmic form usually do not sense the arrhythmia, which is often detected only by electrocardiographic examination.

Although atrial flutter arises from the same conditions as atrial fibrillation, it is distinguished from atrial fibrillation in that the number of atrial impulses reaches 300 and the pulse may be as rapid as 240–300 beats per minute. A distinction is made between regular flutter, in which every second or third impulse travels successfully from the atria to the ventricles, and irregular flutter, in which the alternation of atrial and ventricular contractions is irregular. Atrial flutter is more difficult for patients to tolerate than is fibrillation.

Cardiac arrhythmias are treated with cardiac glycosides, quinidine, Novocainamid, Inderal, Aimalin, potassium salts, cocarboxylase, and electropulse therapy.


References in periodicals archive ?
Neural mechanisms of paroxysmal atrial fibrillation and paroxysmal atrial tachycardia in ambulatory canines.
s HeartLight Endoscopic Ablation System for the treatment of patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, the company said.
The safety and effectiveness of the catheter were evaluated as part of a prospective, multicenter study--the SMART-AF trial--in patients with drug-resistant symptomatic paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
Autonomic nervous system and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation: a study based on the analysis of RR interval changes before, during and after paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
Data Source: Data were taken from the RAAFT-2 randomized multicenter trial in 127 patients with symptomatic, recurrent paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
We think these data support radiofrequency ablation as a first-line treatment in patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation," said presenter Jens Nielsen, MD, professor of medicine, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Denmark.
The CLARITY-AF study will rigorously evaluate the efficacy, safety and efficiency of the Biosense Webster NAVISTAR(R) THERMOCOOL(R) catheter with CARTO(R) 3 System guidance compared to the Medtronic Pulmonary Vein Ablation catheter(R) (PVAC(R)) with fluoroscopy for treating paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
This trial did not include younger patients without stroke risk factors, or those with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
Key words: cobalt, diamond polishing, metals, occupational asthma, paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, prevention.
Embolic complications in paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.