AFib is the most common type of irregular heartbeat that often causes the heart to beat too quickly. One of the biggest concerns with AFib is the risk of stroke. In fact, people with AFib have about 5 times greater risk of stroke than those who do not have AFib. It is projected that by 2030, approximately
12 million people in the U.S. will have AFib.
AFib symptoms can come and go, and they can vary. Talk to a healthcare professional if you experience one or more of these symptoms:
A feeling of your heart racing or skipping beats. This can happen when at rest or when performing physical activities.
A fast beating, fluttering, or racing heart. Similar to an irregular heartbeat, this symptom can happen at any time.
This symptom can appear in many forms, ranging from a sharp stabbing pain to a dull ache.
Shortness of breath
Often described as an intense tightening in the chest, difficulty breathing, breathlessness or a feeling of suffocation.
A persistent tired or sluggish feeling. If you are consistently feeling overtired, it may be considered fatigue.
Can cause you to feel dizzy or faint. Some people also feel nauseated when feeling
Seeking medical attention early may help reduce the chance of AFib leading to something more serious. If you have one
or more of these symptoms, contact a doctor or
Symptoms can also be associated with other potentially serious conditions not related to AFib.
Only a healthcare professional can determine whether these symptoms indicate AFib or another condition.
Download the Symptom Guide to prepare for your doctor’s visit.
There are some risk factors that may increase your chances of developing AFib. These include but are not limited to:
During a normal heartbeat, the upper chambers (atria) and lower chambers (ventricles) of the heart work together to pump blood to the rest of the body. AFib occurs when the upper chambers of the heart beat irregularly, and do not pump all of the blood to the lower chambers, causing some blood to pool and potentially form clots.
If a clot breaks loose, it can travel through the bloodstream to the brain and lead to a stroke. Strokes related to AFib are often more severe compared to strokes with other underlying causes.
People with AFib have about
5 times greater risk of stroke
“I was waking up at night with
shortness of breath and a feeling
of pressure on my lungs.”
“My heart was racing periodically when I was lying down.”
“You have to pay attention to maybe being a little more fatigued than you normally are, or occasionally having a little faster pulse than you've had before.”
Some people who have AFib may not experience any symptoms at all. Only
a healthcare professional can determine
whether these symptoms indicate
AFib or another condition.
The most common type of AFib is called nonvalvular AFib (NVAF). Up to 95% of cases of AFib are not caused by a heart valve problem, also known as nonvalvular AFib.
If you have been diagnosed, talk to a healthcare professional to learn more about a prescription treatment option that can help reduce the risk of stroke due to AFib not caused by a heart valve problem.