Atrial Fibrillation

Introduction

Condition when there is irregular or quivering in the heart beat, is called atrial fibrillation. It is also called AFib or AF. This condition can lead to blood clots, stroke in heart, heart failure and many more heart related complications. It can also be considered as one of common symptoms of abnormal heartbeat or heart rhythm. One of the main reasons behind this is abnormal electrical discharges (signals). One who is suffering from atrial fibrillation, then in them there is reduction in the ability of the atria to pump blood into the ventricles, which force the heart to beat too rapidly. As per recent study 2.7 million American people are suffering from AFib along with that in the U.S every year they are diagnosed with one-half million cases and people invest crores to get recovery from this disease. 

Symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation

Person who is atrial fibrillation shows various different symptoms. Some of the common symptoms are discussed below. 

A. Palpitations

B. Dizziness

C. Fainting

D. Weakness

E. Fatigue

F. Shortness of breath

G. Chest pain

H. Some people have no signs or symptoms.

I. Some of major Complications of atrial fibrillation include: heart failure and stroke.

Types of Atrial Fibrillation

On the basis of different research and studies, atrial fibrillation are classified into different types. Some of them are discussed below:

A. Long-Standing:  

Under this atrial fibrillation, there is continuation of irregular pattern of heart beat for more than 12 month. 

B. Permanent: 

Under this condition doctors stop their treatment to bring back the real rhythm. 

C. Paroxysmal: 

Under this condition the normal rhythm of the heart returns back by itself with intervention within 7 starting days.

D. Persistent:  

Under this condition, there is abnormality in heart beat and this continues for more than 7 days and in this condition more treatment is needed for bringing heartbeat to normal rhythm.  

E. Nonvalvular: 

This condition occurs due to abnormal heart valve issues.

Functioning of Normal Heart and its Electrical System Working

Human heart is divided into four chambers: the upper two chambers are atria and the lower two chambers are the ventricles. 

A) the right atrium (upper right)

B) the left atrium (upper left) 

C) the right ventricle (lower right) 

D) the left ventricle (lower left)

Blood which is coming to the human heart contains low levels of oxygen and high levels of carbon dioxide. Further there is flow of this blood into the right atrium and then down into the adjacent right ventricle. After entering into the right ventricle, there occurs contraction of the right atrium which pumps additional blood into the right ventricle. This leads to contraction of the right ventricle, which pumps blood to the lungs and in this condition blood takes up oxygen and gives off carbon dioxide. Further there is flow of blood from the lungs to the left atrium, and then down into the adjacent left ventricle. As contraction in the left atrium pumps an extra amount of blood into the left ventricle. Again there is contraction of the left ventricle , which pumps the blood to the aortic artery and then to all body parts or organs with the help of the vascular system. 

Reason behind our beating heart is the contraction of the ventricles. The main function of the ventricle to deliver enough blood to the body for their regular and normal functioning. And the blood which is pumped out is dependent on various factors like: rate of contraction of the heart which is called as heart beat. The more the heart beat, the more blood will be pumped out. 

Reason behind Atrial Fibrillation

Major factors which work behind atrial fibrillation is abnormal heart beat. As during irregular heart beat electrical discharges are not generated by SA nodes, this of that they are coming from other parts of the atria. As due to this abnormality in electrical discharge and some time this may exceed 350 discharge per minute. Which further causes ineffective contractions of the atria. We can also say that instead of beating, the atria starts quivering, which reduces the ability of the atria to pump blood to the ventricle. 

This abnormality in discharge further passes to AV nodes and then to ventricles, which lead to irregular contraction of ventricles. The average contraction of the ventricle becomes 150/minute which is very less than that of atria. And even after a lot of effort the ventricle is not able to contract 350/minute. Thus under this condition there is a sudden decrease in the amount of blood being pumped out by the ventricles. And the main reason behind this is their rapid contraction process  and lack of normal atrial contraction. 

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Which kind of food causes Atrial Fibrillation?

Ans. Food items which are high of saturated and trans fats, as all such diets increase the changes of atrial fibrillation. Some of the common food items that cause AFib are: butter, red meat, etc. Because of all these issues we all should take proper blanched diet, for normal function of body parts or organs. 

2. What all problems can lead to Atrial Fibrillation?

Ans. Some of reason which causes atrial fibrillations are:

A. Abnormalities in the e heart's structure and function

B.  High blood pressure

C.  Heart attack.

3. What all food items should be avoided or taken in very less amount to reduce the changes of Atrial Fibrillation?

Ans. Some of the food items which should be avoided are:

Alcohol

Caffeine

Grapefruit

Cranberry Juice

Asparagus  

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