AFIB Treatments: Chest pain and an irregular heartbeat are signs of many things, and they rarely are anything good. Many people have some kind of cardiac episode and brush it off as a bad case of heartburn. However, you shouldn’t jump to the conclusion that you’re having a heart attack.
Some cases of heart arrhythmia are actually atrial fibrillation (or AFib). While not always life-threatening, this condition can prove problematic for your daily life.
Here are some AFib treatments and what kind of results you can expect.
What Is AFib?
Atrial fibrillation, also known as AFib, is the most common type of heart arrhythmia. Abnormal electrical signals cause the upper chambers of your heart to fibrillate irregularly.
The result of this irregular heartbeat ranges widely from person to person. Some Afib symptoms include minor dizziness and fatigue. Other people can develop blood clots that can cause a stroke.
Is AFib genetic? AFib has been associated with certain genes, and about 30 percent of people with it have a relative with the condition. Click for more information.
There are various treatments to deal with irregular and fast heart rates. Some of them are nonsurgical, but there are some invasive procedures to treat more serious symptoms. Your doctor can help you decide on the best way forward.
AFib medications target the three key problems with AFib.
First, drugs such as amiodarone help your heart regain a normal rhythm. Beta-blockers and calcium channel blockers can slow your heartbeat down. Blood thinners may be necessary to avoid blood clots as a result of blood pooling in your upper atriums.
This type of treatment involves electrical shocks applied to the outside of your chest. Paddles or patches are placed on your body to try and shock the heart back into a normal rhythm.
This works best for people who have recently developed AFib, though it isn’t a long-term solution.
Radiofrequency ablation involves creating scar tissue in your heart to fix the misfiring electrical signals that cause AFib. A small tube is inserted through a blood vessel into your heart. It then uses laser beams or radio waves to destroy some of your heart tissue.
Pacemaker (AFIB Treatments)
If all of the other AFib treatments fail, then your doctor may recommend a pacemaker. A pacemaker is a small electrical device implanted in your chest, just below your collarbone. It releases electrical signals into your heart to maintain a normal rhythm and speed.
Although it involves your heart, pacemaker surgery is considered a minor procedure.
Get Help Today with AFIB Treatments
Atrial fibrillation can mostly be controlled with the right medications, but they don’t always work as intended. In some cases, you may have to try out other long-term AFib treatments.
It’s a necessary risk if your symptoms are very debilitating or dangerous for your overall health. Make sure to speak with your cardiologist to hear more about your options.
If you’re interested in learning more about health and lifestyle, take a look at some of our other content.