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Atrial Fibrillation – A Concise Review

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia characterized by rapid, irregular electrical activity in the atria of the heart. AF is a prevalent condition, affecting millions of individuals worldwide, and its incidence increases with age. Risk factors for AF include hypertension, aging, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and alcohol consumption. AF can present with a wide range of symptoms, from palpitations and shortness of breath to fatigue, dizziness, and chest discomfort. AF is associated with an increased risk of stroke, heart failure, and other cardiovascular complications due to the irregular heartbeat's impact on blood flow and clot formation. Treatment strategies aim to control the heart rate and rhythm, reduce the risk of stroke with anticoagulation therapy, and address underlying causes and risk factors. In some cases, catheter ablation may be considered to treat AF by isolating or modifying the areas responsible for abnormal electrical signals. Lifestyle changes, including alcohol moderation, weight management, and stress reduction, play a crucial role in managing AF and improving overall cardiovascular health.

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Dr.K V Sahasranam
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Dr.K V Sahasranam

Senior Consultant Cardiologist, Calicut Medical College, Kerala

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