Atrial Fibrillation in Patients With Left Ventricular Assist Devices: Incidence, Predictors, and Clinical Outcomes

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Abstract

Objectives This study sought to determine the prevalence of atrial fibrillation (AF) and its association with cardiac outcomes in patients with left ventricular assist devices (LVADs). Background LVADs are pivotal treatments for end-stage heart failure and a critical bridge to heart transplantation. Methods Medical records of 249 consecutive patients who received an LVAD at Columbia University Medical Center were reviewed. Patient demographics, clinical variables, medications, and outcomes were recorded. Descriptive statistics were generated, and multivariable logistic regression was performed to assess the independent association of clinical variables with the presence of AF. Results Overall, AF was documented in 80 patients (32%) following LVAD placement. Before LVAD placement, 182 patients had no history of AF, whereas 67 patients had documented AF. Among these 67 patients, 56 (84%) continued to have AF following LVAD placement; 24 patients without a history of AF (13%) developed AF after LVAD placement. Patients manifesting AF after LVAD placement were more likely to have had AF before LVAD insertion (p < 0.001). There were no significant differences in risk of stroke or death for patients with AF before or following LVAD insertion. Conclusions AF is common in patients with LVADs, with 32% manifesting AF after placement of their LVAD, including 13% without a prior documented history of AF. The presence of AF was not associated with increased risk of death or stroke.

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Hickey, K. T., Garan, H., Mancini, D. M., Colombo, P. C., Naka, Y., Sciacca, R. R., … Biviano, A. B. (2016). Atrial Fibrillation in Patients With Left Ventricular Assist Devices: Incidence, Predictors, and Clinical Outcomes. JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology, 2(7), 793–798. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jacep.2016.03.009

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