Atrial Fibrillation & Extreme Heat (Florida Edition)

April 9, 2024

Woman lying on couch sweating with tand on forehead holding paper fan

The Sunshine State boasts a subtropical climate that means hot and humid conditions for most of the year. During the summer, we often get temperatures over 90°F, and the combination of high temperatures and humidity can make it feel even hotter than it is.

These prolonged periods of excessively high temperatures can pose significant health risks to vulnerable populations such as the elderly, children, and individuals with pre-existing health conditions.

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Chocolate for Afib Prevention

February 27, 2024

Man biting into chocolate bar

You may have read elsewhere on our website that coffee and caffeine may not actually cause or worsen Afib and could even be protective of the heart. This tends to go against our common sense, but study after study has proven this true. Therefore, would it stand to reason that chocolate, which also can contain caffeine, would be protective for Afib, or do we have to discuss other considerations? The short answer is that it depends. On the one hand, chocolate contains caffeine and other compounds that can benefit the body and heart. On the other hand, how we eat chocolate may make a significant difference in whether it is protective or harmful. Continue reading

Magnesium to Prevent Afib: Does It Work?

February 13, 2024

Variety of foods containing magnesium lying on table with tablecloth

It’s a nutrient that not many of us think of, but magnesium plays a significant role in bodily regulation. From sleep issues to headaches and muscular disorders throughout the body, including the heart, a magnesium deficiency can create potentially serious problems. Fortunately, magnesium is also easy to consume and absorb. Seeds, nuts, leafy greens, and even seafood, amongst other foods, are all good sources of magnesium and can keep your body balanced and healthy. Continue reading

Preparing Your Heart for Winter

November 29, 2023

Woman standing leaning on rail in winter parka coat by a body of water

If you have cardiovascular disease or any form of persistent Afib, you must prepare for the upcoming winter. Granted, we live in Florida, where the seasons don’t change much, but as a patient with heart disease, even small fluctuations in temperature or short periods of time where the temperature dips significantly can have an effect. Why? our blood vessels are very responsive to the cold. When the temperature drops significantly outside, and we are not prepared with appropriate clothing, the blood vessels constrict to maintain body heat. This is important if we are facing a cold emergency and is a holdover from our ancestors for whom colder weather was often a life-threatening issue. Regardless of the weather, cold poses a true concern. It’s important to understand that with your blood vessels constricted, your heart has a tougher time pumping blood around the body, and this can worsen Afib, as well as hasten the worsening of longer-term congestive heart failure.

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Does Coffee Cause or Worsen Afib?

November 15, 2023

Coffee cup on bed with book and fake pumpkin

Of all the potential causes of Afib, one would not be blamed for thinking that coffee was high among them. After all, the whole point of coffee, for those of us who don’t just like its taste, is to get us up and awake in the morning and keep us going throughout the day. With coffee being a stimulant, wouldn’t it stand to reason that it would worsen Afib and other arrhythmias? Very interestingly, and seemingly paradoxically, this is not the case. In fact, some studies have shown that coffee – we are not yet sure if it’s both coffee and caffeine or caffeine alone – is cardioprotective or helpful in preventing heart disease. Along the same lines, it has been shown that caffeinated coffee may reduce the incidence of cardiac arrhythmias. This study flies in the face of everything we’ve thought over the past few decades, with most healthcare practitioners suggesting that patients eliminate caffeine and coffee if they are at risk of or have developed an arrhythmia.

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Deciding Between Medication and Procedures for Afib Stroke Risk

October 25, 2023

person with glove pulling pill pack out of envelope

You will see throughout our website and most other resources about atrial fibrillation or Afib that stroke risk is a significant, often primary concern of the condition. This should not be taken lightly because the risk of stroke is five times higher in patients with Afib than those without. Fortunately, we have effective interventions to prevent or reduce the likelihood of a stroke in Afib patients. In this article, we will discuss how we go about stratifying the risk of stroke and what options we have to manage that risk.

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Is Atrial Fibrillation/Afib Inherently Dangerous?

October 11, 2023

Woman holding top of chest with hand

When we discuss the urgency of atrial fibrillation treatment, we must distinguish between the dangers of Afib itself – in other words, how dangerous a fast, erratic beating or quivering heart is versus the concern surrounding the consequences of untreated or under-treated Afib. This article will help you understand why Afib should be treated promptly and what to expect.

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Understanding the Stages of Atrial Fibrillation (Afib)

September 20, 2023

Woman holding chest with hands folded over

If you have researched Atrial Fibrillation or Afib, you’ll know that it is a progressive condition that, if left untreated or under-managed, can progress, often quickly, in severity. Atrial fibrillation often begins as occasional, or as electrophysiologists call it, paroxysmal. Left untreated, it can eventually become permanent; however, there are stages in between. Here, we will discuss the four stages of atrial fibrillation, as well as what they mean to the patient and what treatment options are available at each stage.

It’s worth understanding that early detection and treatment are best to ensure a positive outcome, as is the case with most other conditions and diseases. The longer the patient waits for treatment, the less likely they will have a satisfactory result.

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Semaglutide Study on Cardiovascular Disease

September 6, 2023

person holding injection with mg reading

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States4, and one of the greatest contributing factors to heart disease is obesity. With nearly 75% of the adult population considered overweight or obese, this puts much of the country at risk for heart disease. Though somewhat outdated, BMI remains the number one measurement for determining obesity. Using a formula based on height and weight, a BMI greater than 30 is obese, while a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is overweight.² We will discuss the pitfalls of such a formula to determine health in a future article, but it is the standard tool providers use today.

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New Ablation Technology on the Horizon

August 23, 2023

Close up of blue EKG linesElectrophysiology has always been one of the most technologically advanced specialties in cardiology and medicine. We require sensitive and technologically advanced equipment and specialized, nuanced techniques because every heartbeat is comprised of a complex electrical system. Further, because ours is a relatively newer cardiology subspecialty, we have benefited from advances that began in the minimally invasive era and have only improved since then.

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