Ethnicity and Atrial Fibrillation: A Counterintuitive Phenomenon

  • Andrea Colella
  • Pietro Amedeo ModestiEmail author
Part of the Updates in Hypertension and Cardiovascular Protection book series (UHCP)


Atrial fibrillation, the arrhythmia most frequently encountered in clinical practice, is currently responsible for one third of all ischemic strokes. According to the Global Burden of Disease Study, the age-adjusted prevalence of AF is lower in low- and middle-income countries when compared to wealthy nations. Furthermore, despite the generally higher burden of most primary AF risk factors in ethnic minorities, epidemiology studies have consistently shown that AF prevalence is lower among individuals belonging to ethnic minorities than among individuals with European ancestry. The discordance between the higher AF risk factor burden and the lower incidence and prevalence of AF was seen as a “paradoxical relationship.”


Atrial fibrillation Ethnic minorities Rheumatic heart disease Genome-wide association studies Screening Management of atrial fibrillation 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Clinical and Experimental MedicineUniversity of FlorenceFirenzeItaly

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