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Atrial fibrillation (AF)

Heart rhythm disorder

A common rhythm abnormality, increasing with age, that raises the risk of stroke

What is atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a heart condition that causes an abnormal and irregular, often very fast heart rhythm compared to a normal heart rate of between 60 and 100 beats a minute. It is the most common sustained arrhythmia, and it occurs when the atria (the heart’s upper chambers) produces out-of-control electrical signals.

AF can be particularly prevalent in older people, often developing as result of other pre-existing heart-related problems. We provide comprehensive care for all types of arrhythmia, from testing and monitoring to interventional procedures like ablation therapy.

Need to know

  • What are the symptoms of atrial fibrillation?  icon plus

    There are a range of symptoms associated with atrial fibrillation, many of which are consistent with those of other heart conditions. The nature of AF means that more often than not your heart will be beating are far more than 100 beats per minute.

    As a result of this, symptoms may include:

    • palpitations
    • tiredness
    • chest pain
    • breathlessness
    • fatigue
    • dizziness
    • blackouts or fainting (syncope)

    In some cases, AF can also occur as a direct consequence of other conditions you may have, such as blocked arteries, lung disease, stress and high blood pressure.

  • How is AF diagnosed? icon plus

    Before conducting any diagnostic test, your consultant will firstly discuss your symptoms with you to gain an understanding of your overall health. If they suspect you have atrial fibrillation, they may carry out an electrocardiogram (ECG). to record electrical activity in your heart.

    You will also wear a Holter monitor for up to several days, which is the main way of detecting arrhythmias as it ensures a more accurate reading of your heart activity over an extended period of time.

    Your consultant may also carry out other tests to rule out underlying causes, such as thyroid problems and structural heart disease

  • Treating atrial fibrillation icon plus

    Dependent on the extent and severity of your atrial fibrillation, there are a range of treatment options we can offer you.

    These might include:

Our AF cardiologists

We're proud to work with leading cardiologists and heart rhythm specialists, who specialise in diagnosing and managing heart rhythm disorders, and whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion. 
 
Consultant in theatres

Our locations

From complex catheter lab procedures to tests and diagnostic procedures, we provide exceptional cardiac care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

Request a cardiac appointment

We're happy to help you make an appointment with one of our experienced cardiologist or cardiac surgeons.

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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