National Stroke Month: Knowing the warning signs of Atrial Fibrillation could help prevent a stroke

Mass Appeal

Atrial Fibrillation, or AFib, is an irregular heartbeat that can lead to blood clots, heart failure and other heart-related complications. In honor of National Stroke Month, we talk with Dr. Bradley P. Knight, Professor of Cardiology at Northwestern University.

Fluttering in your heart may cause blood to pool and form clots, which might make their way to your brain, increasing your risk of stroke five-fold.

Although AFib affects more than 2.7 million Americans, many are unaware of the signs, symptoms and increased risk for stroke due to this condition. Managing your AFib may reduce your stroke risk.

Risks and Stats:

  •     People over the age of 50
  •     Those with a family history of AFib
  •     Those with diabetes, sleep apnea and high blood pressure 
  •     African Americans and Hispanics living with AFib have a higher risk of death from AFib      compared to whites, especially when combined with another condition, such as heart        failure and high blood pressure
  •     African Americans are more likely to suffer a stroke at a younger age and among              those ages 45 – 64, they are two to three times more likely to have a stroke compared      to white Americans

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