Atrial Fibrillation, also called AF, a-fib, is a quivery, fluttery heartbeat. The condition is an irregular, often rapid heart rate that commonly causes poor blood flow. You might hear the doctor call it as arrhythmia. It means the heart’s normal rhythm is out of whack. Since, your blood isn’t moving well, you’re more likely to have heart failure.

Dr. Dinesh Chandra MBBS, MS – General Surgery, MCh – Cardio Thoracic and Vascular Surgery Cardiac Surgeon, Cardiothoracic Surgeon explains in dept what Atrial Fibrillation is and its types.

That’s when your heart can’t keep up with your body’s needs. Blood can also pool inside your heart and form clots. If one gets stuck in your brain, you can have a stroke as well. It is a problem with your heart’s rhythm- it can beat too fast or too slow and in a chaotic way. That prevents it from pumping blood well the way it should. That can cause serious health complications.

Cardiomyopathy – a-fib makes the ventricles beat faster to push blood out of the heart. Beating too fast for a long time can make the heart muscle too weak to pump enough blood to your body, this is known as cardiomyopathy.

There are various types of Atrial Fibrillation, a-fib doesn’t so much have types as it has durations. Doctors classify it by how long it lasts, or what causes it. Your condition could changes over time. Your treatment will depend on which type you are suffering from.

  • Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation – in this episode, that lasts less than a week. You might feel it happening for a few minutes or for several days.
  • Persistent Atrial Fibrillation – it usually starts as short-term a-fib, usually this lasts longer than a week .
  • Long-standing Persistent Atrial Fibrillation – This means your a-fib has lasted for more than a year and doesn’t go away.
  • Permanent (chronic) Atrial Fibrillation- This can’t be corrected by treatments. If you have this type, you and your doctor will decide if you need long-term medication to control your heart rate and lower your odds of having a stroke.
  • Valvular Atrial Fibrillation – In this type, those affects people with an artificial heart valve disease like valvular stenosis or regurgitation.


On placing both your hands on your chest, you might feel your heart’s lub-dub sound. If your heart races rather than beats and the feeling lasts for few minutes, that’s a sign you might have a condition called ATRIAL FIBRILLATION. You might hear it called A-Fib for short.

Other symptoms might include –

  • Heart palpitations—a flutter in your chest
  • Pain and pressure in your chest
  • Confused
  • Dizzy
  • Faint
  • Short of breath
  • Sweaty
  • Tired
  • Weak

Not everyone with a-fib has a racing or pounding heartbeat. A few things can affect whether you have symptoms and how severe they are, including:

  • Your age – older people often don’t have symptoms
  • What caused your a-fib
  • How much it affects your heart’s ability to pump


Atrial fibrillation is an irregular heartbeat that increases the risk of stroke and heart disease. Sign include dizziness , weakness, and fatigue. Treatment involves medication and lifestyle changes , and sometimes procedures such as cardio version , ablation, pacemakers, or surgery.

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