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Palpitations are predictive of future atrial fibrillation
Date:5/15/2012

e are not harmful. They are in fact mostly harmless; the challenge is to detect those which might signify an underlying condition and future AF.

"Thus, while palpitations might be reduced by modifying lifestyle factors, such as alcohol consumption and smoking, both of which increase heart rate, it is still unclear if this will reduce the risk of AF. It was interesting that our study found no significant association between lifestyle factors and future AF - and only with palpitations."

However, the study did confirm that hypertension is a significant risk factor for AF. Raised blood pressure at baseline (defined as above 140/90 mmHg) almost doubled the risk of AF in women (HR 1.98) and increased by 40% (HR 1.40)) in men. The clinical implications of this, say the investigators, would be "to emphasise the importance of adequate treatment of high blood pressure". They also add that subjects with palpitations could have paroxysms of AF, and should also be investigated further, with prolonged ECG monitoring.


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Contact: Jacqueline Partarrieu
press@escardio.org
33-492-947-756
European Society of Cardiology
Source:Eurekalert

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