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Atrial Fibrillation

Published: June 29, 2009

Q: What are some possible causes of atrial fibrillation, and how can I get rid of it? My doctor said I have it, but I was unaware of it. He put me on Coumadin to guard against stroke, etc. Now I do not sleep well.

A: There are many causes of atrial fibrillation, including a hereditary form, coronary disease, hypertension, overactive thyroid, and the list goes on. Warfarin (Coumadin) is important to reduce the risk of stroke and should not bother your sleeping. Some forms of atrial fibrillation can be cured by catheter ablation or surgery. Success rates depend on the kind of atrial fibrillation you have. If you are interested, contact a heart rhythm expert at the Heart Rhythm Society
(hrsonline.org or 202-464-3400) for an evaluation.

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