If you've been told you have the heart rhythm disorder known as atrial fibrillation (a-fib), you need to take it seriously, an expert emphasizes. "While
If you’ve been told you have the heart rhythm disorder known as atrial fibrillation (a-fib), you need to take it seriously, an expert emphasizes.
“While a-fib itself isn’t life-threatening, it can lead to a blood clot forming in the heart,” said Dr. Christopher Rogers. He is a cardiac electrophysiologist with Penn State Health Medical Group–Berks Cardiology.
“If a blood clot leaves the heart and goes to the brain, it can cause a stroke,” he explained in a Penn State news release.
Rogers also noted that a-fib “is a progressive disease, and as it advances, it’s harder to treat. That’s why we recommend people get diagnosed and treated sooner than later.”
Medications are often the first line of treatment and typically involve blood thinners to help prevent blood clots from forming, as well as medications to control heart rhythm.
But medications alone may not be enough to manage a-fib in some people, so minimally invasive electrophysiology procedures may be needed. Rogers outlined three of the most common ones