atrial-fibrilation

Alcohol-induced dilated cardiomyopathy

Note the enlarged ventricular chambers - the increased size causes the appearance of thinned ventricular walls. Assumption that there is decreased musculature in heart walls can cause incorrect diagnosis of cause-of-death.

Dilated cardiomyopathy can cause systolic dysfunction and atrial fibrilation, as well as being a source of thromboembolism.

I Think I know Why...
  • A patient sits uncomfortably short of breath with new onset of atrial fibrillation.
  • Patient:I don't understand how this happened.
  • Doctor:Have you been on any stimulants? Drugs?
  • Patient:Not that I know of.
  • Doctor:Do you drink coffee regularly?
  • Patient:Yes.
  • Doctor:How much?
  • Patient:A dozen.
  • Doctor:A dozen cups per day?
  • Patient:No, a dozen pots.
  • Doctor:...I think I know why you are in atrial fibrillation.

·         No P waves

·         Irregular intervals down bundles of his

·         Ventricles contract irregularly

·         QRS is normal

·         Rhythm is fast

·         Irregular

Rapid, Irregular Heartbeat May Be Linked to Problems with Memory and Thinking

People who develop a type of irregular heartbeat common in old age called atrial fibrillation may also be more likely to develop problems with memory and thinking, according to new research published in the June 5, 2013, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

“Problems with memory and thinking are common for people as they get older. Our study shows that on average, problems with memory and thinking may start earlier or get worse more quickly in people who have atrial fibrillation,” said study author Evan L. Thacker, PhD, of the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “This means that heart health is an important factor related to brain health.”

The study involved people age 65 and older from four communities in the United States who were enrolled in the Cardiovascular Health Study. Participants did not have a history of atrial fibrillation or stroke at the start of the study. They were followed for an average of seven years, and received a 100-point memory and thinking test every year. People who had a stroke were not included in this analysis after the stroke. Of the 5,150 participants, 552, or about 11 percent, developed atrial fibrillation during the study.

The study found that people with atrial fibrillation were more likely to experience lower memory and thinking scores at earlier ages than people with no history of atrial fibrillation. For example, from age 80 to age 85 the average score on the 100-point test went down by about 6 points for people without atrial fibrillation, but it went down by about 10 points for people with atrial fibrillation.

For participants ages 75 and older, the average rate of decline was about three to four points faster per five years of aging with atrial fibrillation compared to those without the condition.

“This suggests that on average, people with atrial fibrillation may be more likely to develop cognitive impairment or dementia at earlier ages than people with no history of atrial fibrillation,” Thacker said.

Thacker noted that scores below 78 points on the 100-point test are suggestive of dementia. People without atrial fibrillation in the study were predicted on average to score below 78 points at age 87, while people with atrial fibrillation were predicted to score below 78 points at age 85, two years earlier.

“If there is indeed a link between atrial fibrillation and memory and thinking decline, the next steps are to learn why that decline happens and how we can prevent that decline,” said Thacker.

I don't often get terribly personal on here,

but I’ve got an appointment with my cardiologist today. As some may know, I have a heart condition that fluctuates between inconvenience and hospitalization. Over about the last two weeks, I’ve taken a turn for the not so good. I’m not dying, by any means, but I’m not at all comfortable and, though this heart thing doesn’t usually bother me, I’m starting to get a little scared.

There’s a terribly simple surgical fix for what I have, but for reasons that are probably pretty obvious in America’s current political climate, I am not covered under my wife’s medical insurance. Today I’m going to talk with my doctor, and his staff, about trying to do something about this even without insurance.

So, if you wouldn’t mind, I’d appreciate any and all good juju, thoughts, and energy you have. I wouldn’t usually ask, as I like to keep things light, but today is a heavy day.

Thanks, friends.

What Is Atrial Fibrillation?

At the core of every healthy body is a strong, steady heartbeat. Atrial fibrillation is a condition that disrupts this rhythm. A glitch in the heart’s electrical system makes the upper chambers (the atria) quiver or fibrillate. This causes the lower chambers (the ventricles) to beat irregularly. Atrial fibrillation can be dangerous because it raises the risk of stroke and heart failure.

I never really appreciated the life I was given until last night while caring for a geriatric patient who was undergoing atrial fibrilation. He was straining himself with every breath and with every breath came slight chest pains. He was tachycardic and there wasn’t much I could do for him as an EMT who’s still in training. To be honest there isn’t much a professional EMT can do in this case other than supply him with oxygen, which we did through the nasal cannula he was already receiving o2 from. I stood back and watched the paramedic and his assigned EMT assess the patient. As the two collected information about past medical history, medications, allergies, last oral intake etc. I couldn’t help but to observe their living conditions. As an EMT student we are taught to take note of their surroundings especially if we are dealing with the elderly. I spotted no lighting in this man’s room. We were holding flashlights. The walls were falling apart, the wooded construction of the home was clearly visible, floors were creaking, the stairs were unstable, and the poor man was pretty much living in the left over space of the kitchen. This wwas a home for not just him but for three other people. I mean I’m thankful that it was as organized as could be, but actually seeing this kind of slum was almost negatively breath taking. I was at a loss for words completely. Just shocked. I’m always hearing news about the millions who fall under the poverty line but I had no idea that what the reporters always talk about happens not even an hour away from my area. I mean this just struck a nerve. I don’t even want to be in the medical field for the money. I want to be in it to help those who are iin need of medical assistance. This is probably very naive of me to say but I would have loved to pay for his medical bill. He had already been in the hospital that day and not even 24 hours later did he have to go back to the ER. Id want to pay for Not.only him but anyone who needs financial aid. This is a wild dream i have. I wont be making nearly wnough money to pay for everyones medical bills but… Its so sad to see people live in these kinds of conditions when I live such a wonderful life. some may say they did it to themselves, and that statement isn’t false but shouldn’t it also be our duty to help those in need and not degrade them for not trying hard enough in life? What I took from this experience was how happy and content this family seemed. They literally appreciate life so much more than I do on any given day and it was encouraging and eye opening to see what happiness is all about, what it *should* be about.

Atrial Fibrillation

In atrial fibrillation (A Fib) an increased irritability of all the cardiac cells in the atria exists. Because of this increased atrial irritability, many sites within the atria attempt to initiate electrical impulses. Because all of the impulses are competing against one another, proper conduction (depolarization) cannot be completed and thus a quivering movement (fibrillatory wave) occurs. After the re-polarization of the ventricles is complete the AV node is willing to accept another electrical impulse. The first available impulse received from the atria will then be conducted fully. This mechanism is responsible for the irregularity of the rhythm. 

Atrial Fibrillation.

What is atrial fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common, abnormal rhythm of the heart.

The heart contracts (beats) and pumps blood with a regular rhythm, for example, at a rate of 60 beats per minute there is a beat every second. The heart may beat faster or slower with a shorter or longer interval between beats, but at any one rate the interval between beats is constant. This regular rhythm occurs as a result of regular electrical discharges (currents) that travel through the heart and cause the muscle of the heart to contract. In atrial fibrillation, the electrical discharges are irregular and rapid and, as a result, the heart beats irregularly and, usually, rapidly.

Atrial fibrillation is common; half a million new cases are diagnosed yearly in the U.S., and billions of dollars are spent annually on its diagnosis and treatment.

Keep reading

Heart flutter

Painful. Not happy happy heart flutter. Been happening the past two days and I keep dreaming that I’m unable to breath or someone is squeezing me reaaaaaaly hard. Ouch >.<. They do say that sleeping on your left side can cause some pressure on your chest and restrict blood flow thus leading to bad dreams. Hmmmm. But in waking life it’s a little freaky. As if any moment I’ll become an old woman and ahhh ohhhh owwww ahhh. passes out >.<

An update for those interested:

The cardiologist appointment went well. My doctor was pretty adamant about getting me into surgery as soon as possible, so his people are going to work with my parent’s insurance to see if they can get me covered. I should know in about a week, and then we can get to scheduling surgery.

And, in also happy news, I got the library job! I’ll be the weekend nightshift circulation desk supervisor for our local private college. Not much of a social life, but, you know, I really don’t care. I WORK IN A LIBRARY. (And a damn snooty one at that.)

Can Alcohol Treat Atrial Fibrillation?

Can Alcohol Treat Atrial Fibrillation?

Heart disease is one of the top killers around the world, and one of the causes of heart disease is an irregular heart rhythm. One of the common irregular rhythms is atrial fibrillation. But what is atrial fibrillation and how can you treat it?

Atrial Fibrillation

For us to understand more about atrial fibrillation, let us first review the relevant anatomy and physiology of the heart. The…

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Leptin Resistance and Heart Palpitations

Leptin Resistance Symptoms: What Are They?

Want to know how this relates to heart palpitations? Come over to our blog and read more…. You will soon know.

Leptin is a hormone that regulates appetite and metabolism. People with high levels of leptin have a generally suppressed appetite and a relatively increased metabolic rate. Strict dieting or low-calorie lifestyles often result in leptin levels dropping which in turn means slower metabolism and increased appetite.

When functioning normally, leptin’s job is to signal how much body fat is available to your brain and hence help regulate your appetite and metabolism.


However, there is a paradox in obese individual who have uncommonly high levels of leptin yet there appetite is not suppressed.

This is called Leptin Resistance, according to which people with high concentration of leptin are not affected by Leptin levels the way normally reacting to leptin people do.

These people develop a sort of immunity, during which leptin levels or fluctuations do not impact their metabolism and appetite in the conventional manner.

Obese people usually fall under this category, they exhibit high levels of leptin yet they are not leptin-sensitive. What this means in everyday terms is that due to this leptin non-sensitivity, this person’s brain cannot effectively receive leptin’s signal and indicate satiety. This results in overeating, which in turn leads to overweight or obese individuals.

The Symptoms of Leptin Resistance

A person with leptin resistance is likely to exhibit many of these symptoms:

  • You are dieting and your appetite has suddenly surged, you crave carbohydrates     specifically.
  • You’ve reach a weight loss plateau and no matter how much exercising and dieting you do, there’s no more weight losing
  • Being hungry despite eating satisfactory meals
  • Exercise recovery takes more time than usual
  • Irritation and possible mood swings
  • Weight gain, or
  • Inability to have efficient weight management
  • Craving comfort food and fast food
  • Frequent overeating or binge eating
  • Sleep disruptions including short and interrupted sleep patterns
  • Blood pressure above 130/85


If you’re worried you might suffer from leptin resistance it is best to consult your physician, to advice on test you can take in order to verify if you’re leptin resistant. Health supplements like Invigia Gabonensis have a proven record of increasing leptin sensitivity and facilitate weight loss.

It is a natural, safe, and scientifically proven hormone support supplement that can help you regain leptin sensitivity again.

African Mango, Weight Loss and Leptin Sensitivity
As an expertly designed and scientifically grounded supplement, African Mango is capable of fixing one’s leptin desensitization and bring about the much needed, fat-burning leptin sensitivity. This is achieved thanks to the highly potent formula of African Mango and one special ingredient therein, namely Irvingia Gabonensis.

In a randomized double-blind placebo controlled study, Irvingia Gabonensis has been found to assist in leptin-sensitivity improvement. The seed extract has been found to decrease the amount of C-reactive protein, which in turn helps enhance leptin sensitivity. C-reactive protein tends to cling to leptin and this is partly what makes leptin’s signaling to the brain weak.

However and as the study has shown, c-reactive protein was decreased by 52%, which greatly compromises its ability to prevent leptin from signaling fullness. As a result, the person is then has an improved leptin sensitivity as the C-reactive protein no longer is as powerful as to prevent it from doing so.

People on dieting who cannot seem to lose weight might have developed leptin resistance or their leptin levels have dropped. IF you suspect such an issue, taking health supplements like African Mango will assist you counteract this leptin resistance and start losing weight again.

Heparin

Heparin interferes with the activation of fibrin and fibrinogen from thrombin, help preventing clots from forming

Heparin prevents clots; it doesn’t break up clots

Uses

Rapid acting to prevent and treat DVT, PE, and emboli in atrial fibrillation

Preferred anticoagulant during pregnancy 

Side Effects

Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (read article:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2600013/)

Spontaneous bleeding

Nursing Considerations

Monitor partial thromboplastin time (PTT) and activated PTT (aPTT) - should be 1.5 to 2 times the control value

Watch for bleeding

Protamine sulfate is the antidote

Administered IV or SubQ; apply firm pressure for 1 minute