Warning Signs of AFib

Atrial fibrillation, or AFib for short, is an irregular heartbeat that could lead to life-threatening health conditions.

A normal heart beats between 60 and 100 times a minute, but in people with AFib, the heartbeats up to 175 times a minute. This occurs when the two upper chambers of the heart, (atria), beat irregularly and out of sync with the two lower chambers of the heart (ventricles). Nearly 3 million people have AFib but some people don’t know they have it until they get a check-up.

What are the symptoms?

  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Heart palpitations or fluttering in the chest
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Anxiety and confusion
  • Low blood pressure
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weakness

According to the AFib Alliance, AFib can be dangerous because it can lead to a stroke or heart failure. While it can come and go, you may need medication to control it or you may need emergency medical treatment. It can be caused by high blood pressure, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), or imbalances in the heart’s electrical system.

Nearly three million people in the U.S. have AFib. Your risk of AFib increases with age. You are five times more likely to have a stroke if you have AFib.

Risk factors

  • Family history of AFib
  • Certain chronic conditions (diabetes, thyroid problems, sleep apnea)
  • Use of stimulants (caffeine/alcohol/tobacco)
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • More common in women
  • Obesity

Furthermore, if you have heart palpitations, a rapid heartbeat, or any of the other symptoms, get to the emergency room right away. When it comes to your heart health, know the warning signs of AFib.

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Our top priority is bringing high-quality emergency care, quickly and easily to your family. We are committed to making patients feel better faster in a comforting and compassionate environment.

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