What is atrial fibrillation?
Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is a heart rhythm disorder that occurs when the upper chambers of the heart beat irregularly. While it is possible to live a normal life with mild atrial fibrillation, more severe cases can lead to serious issues like stroke or congestive heart failure if left untreated.
The treatment plan for atrial fibrillation depends on the severity of your condition and personal health characteristics. Treatments may include one or a combination of the following:
- Lifestyle modifications to achieve healthier habits
- Medication management, including blood thinners and heart rate and rhythm medicines
- Minimally or non-invasive procedures, such as Watchman (an alternative to blood thinner medications) and catheter ablation
- Open heart surgery, such the Maze and Convergent
Choosing PeaceHealth for your atrial fibrillation care
PeaceHealth cardiologists average more than 23 years of experience treating atrial fibrillation and treat an average of 10,000 AFib patients every year. We have the experience to help you manage your condition and lead a full healthy life, so you never have to miss a beat.
Quality care close to home
You don’t have to wait to get the care you need. With more than 50 heart specialists across Alaska, Washington and Oregon, you can conveniently and promptly get an appointment close to home.
PeaceHealth is consistently recognized for providing safe, effective, and high-quality cardiac care. Recent recognition has come from the American Heart Association, the American Stroke Association, the Foundation for Health Care Quality, and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
We take pride in introducing minimally invasive heart technologies and surgical techniques into our communities. Today's advanced heart procedures are designed to help you recover quickly and so that you can return to your normal life.
Personalized care plans
We understand every patient has a different story. Our cardiac teams will partner with you and your primary care physician to evaluate your condition and ensure you get connected with a treatment pathway that best fits your needs.
Symptoms and diagnosis of atrial fibrillation
You should make an appointment with your primary care physician or cardiologist if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Rapid and irregular heartbeat
- A fluttering or thumping feeling in the chest
- Shortness of breath and anxiety
- Faintness or confusion
- Fatigue while exercising
- Chest pain or pressure*
*PLEASE NOTE: Chest pain or pressure may be a medical emergency. If you are experiencing this symptom call 911 immediately.
Diagnosis of atrial fibrillation is typically done through one or more tests conducted at your appointment. This may include electrocardiogram (EKG or ECG), Holter monitor, echocardiogram, blood tests, stress tests, and/or chest X-rays.