Atrial Fibrillation and Atrial Flutter. Medical Management.

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Abstract

Atrial fibrillation (AF) and atrial flutter (AFL) are common cardiac arrhythmias in older adults. Medical management focuses on rate and rhythm control of AF and AFL to promote symptomatic relief and avoid tachycardia-mediated cardiomyopathy. Pharmacologic treatment of AF and AFL is especially challenging in the elderly because of the presence of comorbidities that may affect drug kinetics, and polypharmacy, which may lead to drug interactions. The potential for complications from medications and procedures required to achieve and maintain sinus rhythm must be carefully balanced against the benefits of therapy. This article reviews medical management of AF and AFL specifically relating to rate and rhythm control. The controversy of rate versus rhythm control is also discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)635-647
Number of pages13
JournalClinics in Geriatric Medicine
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2012

Keywords

  • Antiarrhythmic drugs
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Atrial flutter
  • Elderly

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