Atrial Fibrillation (or A-Fib), sometimes known as “racing heart,” is a common type of arrhythmia that causes the heart to beat irregularly. It is frequently associated with other heart conditions. In essence, the heart is like a pump, one that is controlled by a delicate electrical system. When this complex system isn't working properly, a person may develop a slow, rapid or irregular heartbeat with the potential for creating a life-threatening problem, including stroke.
Symptoms include palpitations, lightheadedness, syncope (fainting), shortness of breath and chest pain. The risk of developing A-Fib increases with age. According to the American Heart Association, 3 to 5 percent of people over the age of 65 have this abnormality, although it can affect patients of any age. If untreated, the risk of stroke increases considerably.
Fortunately, there are treatments options for A-Fib, including medication, implantable cardiac devices and catheter ablation procedures.
The array of medical and surgical treatments to improve a patient’s health is extensive. These procedures are minimally invasive and carry a high success rate. However, the best approach varies among individuals and is best assessed by a cardiologist specializing in electrophysiology. Using state-of-the-art electrophysiology labs at the new Louis and Peaches Owen Heart Hospital that are equipped with the latest technology to diagnose and treat this condition, the Trinity Clinic Electrophysiol-ogy program has the most experience of any in the region for comprehensive management of atrial fibrillation.
If you or a loved on is experiencing “racing heart” symptoms, it is important to schedule an evaluation with a Trinity Clinic electrophysiologist.
For more information, please call us today to schedule an appointment at 903-606-7525 or visit our website at tmfheart.org.
Dr. Weiner is an MD, FACC with Trinity Clinic Electrophysiology