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Postop A-Fib May Raise Risk for Heart Failure Hospitalization

Last Updated: July 14, 2022.

THURSDAY, July 14, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- Postoperative atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with incident heart failure hospitalization among patients without a prior history of heart failure undergoing either cardiac or noncardiac surgery, according to a study published online June 28 in the European Heart Journal.

Parag Goyal, M.D., from Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, and colleagues examined the association between postoperative AF and incident heart failure hospitalization among patients undergoing cardiac (76,536) and noncardiac (about 2.9 million) surgeries.

The researchers found that among patients who underwent cardiac surgery, 18.8 percent developed incident postoperative AF versus 0.8 percent of noncardiac surgery patients. Postoperative AF was associated with incident heart failure hospitalization for both those undergoing cardiac surgery (hazard ratio, 1.33) and those undergoing noncardiac surgery (hazard ratio, 2.02). Postoperative AF remained associated with incident heart failure hospitalization when excluding heart failure within one year of surgery (hazard ratios, 1.15 and 1.49 for cardiac surgery and noncardiac surgery, respectively).

"These findings reinforce the adverse prognostic impact of postoperative AF and suggest that postoperative AF may be a marker for identifying patients with subclinical heart failure and those at elevated risk for heart failure," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to medical and pharmaceutical companies.

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