Q: If one has Afib and it’s left untreated, what happens? What does it cause?
If you look at Afib ablations, Afib patients as a whole, the risk of stroke from atrial fibrillation is five times more than someone without atrial fibrillation. So, untreated atrial fibrillation, certainly if you have stroke risk factors, is a really big deal. Even if you don’t have stroke risk factors, the atrial fibrillation that drives the heart to an elevated rate, if it’s untreated, can lead to heart failure – severe heart failure. And that’s, usually, if we catch it in time, reversible. But it can lead to irreversible problems with the way the heart functions.
It’s very important to address atrial fibrillation. Not everyone has to be on medications for their atrial fibrillation, the vast majority of patients do have to be on some sort of medication to make it so that their atrial fibrillation is not going to cause long-term problems.