Avera Medical Minute: Recognizing atrial fibrillation

Published: Jan. 31, 2023 at 3:18 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Our hearts can pump about 2 thousand gallons worth of blood a day to carry out crucial functions. A disruption in that flow, or atrial fibrillation, can be frightening and a major detriment to our overall health. It is also one of the most commonly seen rhythm abnormalities in any doctor’s office. About 10 million Americans are diagnosed with it and nearly half a million will see a doctor this year because of the ailment. Dr. Mohama, an Electrophysiologist with The North Central Heart Institute, describes atrial fibrillation as an irregular, chaotic rhythm, that drives the heart into an irregularity and does pose serious consequences.

“If left untreated, it can cause a stroke, or it can even lead to a significant heart failure,” Dr. Mohama said. Some of the risk factors that come with atrial fibrillation include:

-High blood pressure

-Hyperthyroid state

-Sleep apnea

-Snoring

-Excessive alcohol consumption