Atrial fibrillation is currently the most common cardiac arrhythmia and is a major risk factor for heart failure (risk tripled), stroke (risk increased up to five times) and overall mortality (risk doubled).
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Boston, MA (PRWEB) May 29, 2012
The Doctors Health Press, a publisher of various natural health newsletters, books and reports, including the popular online Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin, is supporting a study that shows people with a history of high blood pressure and heart palpitations face the most risk for getting atrial fibrillation later in life. This common type of irregular heartbeat puts you at much greater risk for the most serious health problems.
As reported in Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin on Monday, May 28, 2012 (http://www.doctorshealthpress.com/heart-health-articles/what-heart-palpitations-could-mean-down-the-road), a large study in Norway involved nearly 23,000 adults between 25 and 96 years of age. Results showed that atrial fibrillation was recorded in 361 women (three percent) and 461 men (four percent) in 11 years of follow-up. Age, self-reported palpitations, and hypertension were the strongest risk factors for atrial fibrillation.
The Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin article reports that, while hypertension is a well-known risk factor for atrial fibrillation, palpitations weren’t known to be a risk factor as well. Atrial fibrillation is currently the most common cardiac arrhythmia and is a major risk factor for heart failure (risk tripled), stroke (risk increased up to five times) and overall mortality (risk doubled). The mortality and morbidity linked with atrial fibrillation remain, according to experts, “unacceptably high.”
The word “palpitations” is used subjectively to describe irregular heartbeat or accelerated heart rate. It’s likely, researchers say, that many palpitations also represent cases of irregular heart rhythm—which, in itself, is a main characteristic of atrial fibrillation.
The Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin article also reports that a well-known study of 190 patients with palpitations concluded that cardiac arrhythmias were diagnosed in 40% of the patients. This and other studies suggest that palpitations can represent mechanisms of an irregular heartbeat. That said, palpitations are not necessarily harmful themselves. They are, in fact, mostly harmless; the challenge is to detect those that might signify an underlying condition and future atrial fibrillation.
According to Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin, researchers state that, in order to reduce palpitations, you should take steps to modify lifestyle factors, such as abstaining from alcohol, and not smoking. However, it isn’t clear if this will reduce your risk of atrial fibrillation. The study also confirmed that high blood pressure remains a major risk factor for atrial fibrillation.
(SOURCE: Nyrnes, A., et al., "Palpitations are predictive of future atrial fibrillation. An 11-year follow-up of 22,815 men and women: the Tromso Study," European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, 2012; DOI: 10.1177/2047487312446562.)
Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin is a daily e-letter providing natural health news with a focus on natural healing through foods, herbs and other breakthrough health alternative treatments. For more information on Doctors Health Press, visit http://www.doctorshealthpress.com.
The Doctors Health Press believes in the healing properties of various superfoods, like pistachios, as well as the benefits of taking vitamins and supplements, Chinese herbal remedies and homeopathy. To see a video outlining the Doctors Health Press' views on homeopathic healing, visit http://www.doctorshealthpress.com/homeopathy.