Can AFib cause heart failure?

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is a condition that causes the heart to beat quickly and irregularly. This can lead to heart failure, which develops when the heart is not pumping blood efficiently around the body.

AFib is the more common form of cardiac arrhythmia, which means that it causes an irregular heartbeat. It also causes tachyarrhythmia, which is when the heart beats too fast.

AFib is currently the leading cardiac cause of stroke as it causes blood clots to form in the heart and can break off and travel to the brain. This process, known as paradoxical embolism, can cause a stroke.

Heart failure occurs when the heart stops pumping effectively. He can result any condition that restricts the heart from pumping the necessary amount of blood around the body to meet its needs.

There are two types. the systolic type develops when the muscle layer and inner layer of the heart, called the myocardium and endocardium, develop defects that prevent the heart chambers from filling and ejecting blood the way they should. The diastolic type occurs when the heart is abnormally rigid and pumps blood at high pressures.

This article explores the link between AFib and heart failure, whether one condition can cause the other, and the risk factors and symptoms of AFib and heart failure.

AFib and heart failure have close links. This is because they have common disease mechanisms and risk factors. Both can result in morbidity and mortality.

Furthermore, both AFib and heart failure are increasing in prevalence. This is because many of the risk factors they share are on the rise, including:

AFib and heart failure can occur at the same time. The prognosis is usually worse when this is the case.

Treatments and monitoring strategies are also similar for the two conditions. However, the co-occurrence of both conditions can complicate treatment. When looking for the characteristics of one condition, it is often likely that the signs and symptoms of the other will also be evident.

AFib can cause cardiac insufficiency. AFib can affect blood pressure numbers, affecting heart function and health.

A person with AFib is 3 times more likely to develop heart failure.

In addition to AFib causing heart failure, heart failure can also cause AFib. AFib may result of any condition affecting the anatomy of the heart causing:

Heart failure can cause all of these mechanisms to occur.

In addition, heart failure causes structural and neurohormonal changes that increase the risk of developing AFib.

AFib and heart disease share most of their risk factors. Those include🇧🇷

AFib and heart disease can also be risk factors, as having one of the conditions increase the risk of developing the other.

There are several treatment options for AFib and heart failure. If a person has both conditions, a healthcare professional may recommend certain treatments over others.

AFib treatment

Treatment for AFib is aimed at improving symptoms and will vary depending on whether it co-occurs with heart failure.

Medicines can be used to prevent blood clots, control a person’s heart rate, and regulate heart rhythm.

If a person has both AFib and heart failure, the doctor may advise medications that control heart rhythm instead of heart rate control.

If a person with AFib does not respond to medication, surgery may be required. If they also have heart failure, a surgeon is more likely to recommend a catheter or surgical ablation, which destroys or removes the tissue causing the irregular heartbeat.

Treatment of heart failure

The damage that occurs to a person’s heart due to this condition can be permanent. However, several treatments can improve symptoms and quality of life, keeping heart failure at bay.

Several medications can treat the symptoms of heart failure. These include ACE inhibitors, MRAs, SLGT2 inhibitors, blood thinners and beta blockers.

If a person does not respond to medication, surgery is an option. Surgical options vary depending on the cause of heart failure and include pacemaker installation, cardiac ablation, heart valve surgery, or, in some cases, heart transplantation.

Learn more about cardiac procedures such as transplants and pacemakers here.

A person should speak to a doctor as soon as possible if they experience symptoms of AFib or heart disease, even if they seem minor.

AFib symptoms

This includes the following AFib symptoms:

heart failure symptoms

Symptoms of heart failure may be less obvious, Including🇧🇷

As many of these symptoms are not directly related to the heart, it can be more difficult to make the association. The British National Health Service (NHS) suggests seeing a doctor if symptoms are present.

heart attack symptoms

It is important to be careful when experiencing any cardiac symptoms. The following features of chest pain may indicate AFib. However, they can be a sign that a heart attack is taking place.

Seek immediate medical attention if you develop sudden chest pain that:

  • lasts more than 15 minutes
  • makes the chest feel heavy or tight
  • spreads to the jaws, arms, legs, or back
  • occurs alongside feelings of shortness of breath, sweating, malaise

Learn more about how to recognize when chest pain is severe here.

Atrial fibrillation, or AFib, and heart failure are increasingly prevalent heart conditions that restrict adequate blood flow, disabling necessary functions in the body.

AFib can lead to heart failure as it causes the heart to beat irregularly and too quickly. The reverse can also occur, as the mechanisms that cause heart failure can lead to AFib.

It is important to consult a doctor whenever a person suspects a heart problem, as with the diagnosis it is much easier to establish a treatment plan. Always seek immediate medical attention if severe chest pain occurs that could indicate a heart attack.

Can AFib cause heart failure?

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