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RMU

Uruguayan Medical Journal

ISSN: 1688-0390


Vol.21 - Nº 4 - Dic. 2005

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Arial fibrillation: more prevention than cure

FERNÁNDEZ BANIZI P; VANERIO BALBELA G; BANINA AGUERRE D; VIDAL AMARAL JL; VANERIO DE LEÓN A; LÓPEZ ACHIGAR G
Rev Med Urug 2005; 21: 269-281
Full text (spanish) |  Full text (spanish) (New windows, pdf) | Abstract

Abstract

Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained arrhythmia.

It affects 0.6% of the overall population and 6 to 8% in elderly people aged 60 to 80 years respectively. Patients with atrial fibrillation show a morbility five times higher and twice mortality rates.

This review analyzes electric and anatomy atrial remodelation. Risk factors are also discussed: age, followed by diastolic heart failure, are the most relevant risk factors. Aggresive treatment might invert structural changes provoked by hypertension, and could prevent atrial fibrillation.

Effects of non-antiarrhythmic and antiarrhythmic drugs are described. Finally we focused on primary and secondary prevention.

Atrial fibrillation is not an homogenous entity: many parameters affect initiation, perpetuation and ending ot this condition. For many patients, our goal is modest: to reduce frequency, lenght and severity of episodes; but for other patients, prevention may be definitive.