Atrial fibrillation can be prevented and treated.
Know the symptoms
Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is the most common type of irregular heartbeat. The most common symptom: a quivering or fluttering heartbeat. Sometimes people with AFib have no symptoms and their condition is only detectable upon physical examination. Others may experience:
• General fatigue or when exercising
• Rapid and irregular heartbeat
• Fluttering or “thumping” in the chest
• Shortness of breath and anxiety
• Faintness or confusion
• Chest pain or pressure — Chest pain or pressure is a medical emergency. You may be having a heart attack. Call 911 immediately.
Get the right treatment
The treatment goals of AFib start with a proper diagnosis. The exam usually includes questions about your history and often an EKG or ECG. Some patients may need a thorough electrophysiology study.
Treatment options may include one or more of the following: medications; nonsurgical procedures; surgical procedures.
To reduce risk for the onset of AFib, a heart-healthy lifestyle is always the best option.
• Get regular physical activity
• Eat a heart-healthy diet, low in salt, saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol
• Manage high blood pressure
• Avoid excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine
• Don’t smoke
• Control cholesterol