Validation of a simple method for atrial fibrillation screening in patients with stroke
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Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia in adult and old people and represents a risk factor for stroke. Correct AF individuation bears strong relevance in primary and secondary stroke prevention. Our goal was to evaluate the reliability of a low-cost, non-invasive technology in detecting AF in acute stroke patients. AFib model BP3MQ1-2D (Microlife USA, Dunedin, FL) showed good accuracy in diagnosing AF in a general cardiologic outpatient population. We carried out an observational study in patients with recent stroke. We studied 207 subjects, 103 men, 104 women, mean age (±SD) 77.7 ± 11.34 years, who underwent a test by AFib device with indication of AF or lack of it. The golden standard was a 12-lead EKG done immediately and evaluated by a certified cardiologist. We computed estimates of Sensitivity and Specificity and their 95 % confidence intervals (CI). AF was present in 38 subjects from the sample of 207 (18.4 %). AFib correctly demonstrated AF in 34 and failed diagnosing AF in 4 cases; on the other hand, AFib correctly excluded AF in 167 and caused an erroneous diagnosis of AF in 2 cases. The Sensitivity was 0.895 (95 % CI 0.7597–0.958) and the Specificity was 0.988 (95 % CI 0.958–0.997). The AFib device global accuracy was 0.971 (95 % CI 0.938–0.987). This device was able to detect AF with high specificity and a good sensitivity. This device may be considered as an accurate tool in detecting AF in stroke patients.
KeywordsAFib device Atrial fibrillation Stroke Specificity Sensitivity Accuracy
We thank the following components of the nursing team of our Stroke Unit who performed all evaluations by means of AFib device as well as the 12-lead-standard EKG recordings: Mr. Franco Bixio, Mrs. Paola Bruzzone, Mrs. Antonella Cuomo, Mrs. Cristina Forgione and the Head Nurse Mrs. Adria Ferrari. We also thank the Italian Association against Stroke (A.L.I.Ce.: “Associazione Lotta all’Ictus Cerebrale”) that provided free of charge, three AFib Microlife devices to perform the study.
Conflict of interest
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