Significance of Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation Complicating Acute Myocardial Infarction in the Thrombolytic Era

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Abstract

Background

Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) is considered a frequent complication of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), associated with increased in-hospital and long-term mortality rates. This notion is based on data collected before thrombolysis and additional modern methods of treatment became widely available, and no information is available on the significance of PAF in the general population with AMI in the thrombolytic era. The aim of the present study was to define the incidence, associated clinical parameters, and short- and long-term prognostic significance of PAF in patients with AMI in the thrombolytic era.

Conclusions

Patients with AMI who develop PAF in the TE have significantly worse short- and long-term prognoses than patients without PAF, mostly due to their worse risk profile. After adjustment for confounding factors, patients with PAF in the TE have a better overall outcome than counterparts in the PTE, probably reflecting the better management of patients with AMI in the TE. (Circulation. 1998;97:965-970.)

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