Treatment of atrial fibrillation in the elderly: time for a change?
- L. R. C. Dekker
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Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia. The prevalence of AF is highly age dependent as the median age of AF patients is 75 years and at least 70% of AF patients are between 65 and 85 years old [1, 2]. With increasing life expectancy, AF prevalence will increase 2.5 times during the next 40 years and constitute an even more important health concern .
Symptoms may change as AF progresses from paroxysmal to permanent, especially in the elderly. Palpitations are more common among patients <65 years compared with patients aged 65–80 years (61% and 46%, respectively). However, other symptoms, such as dyspnoea and fatigue, are more prevailing in the elderly resulting in overall presence of symptoms in 75% among patients <65 years and 67% among patients between 65 and 80 years (Euro Heart Survey on AF, personal communications by HJGM Crijns). Care of AF patients poses a very high economic burden on society. The annual costs of the average AF patient are over 3000 euro (3600
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- Treatment of atrial fibrillation in the elderly: time for a change?
Netherlands Heart Journal
Volume 19, Issue 10 , pp 403-404
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- Bohn Stafleu van Loghum
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- L. R. C. Dekker (1)
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Department of Cardiology, Catharina Hospital, PO Box 1350, 5602 ZA, Eindhoven, the Netherlands