Heart palpitations and high blood pressure put people at high risk for atrial fibrillation. AF is an abnormal electrical activity in the upper chambers of the heart, and those who have it have increased risk of death from heart attack and stroke.
A new Scandinavian study that observed a wide range of men and women recently revealed its findings.
“Frequent palpitations increased the risk of atrial fibrillation in women by 62 percent and in men by 91 percent. High blood pressure (which was defined as a reading of 140/90 mmHg) nearly doubled the risk of atrial fibrillation in women and increased the risk by 40 percent in men, the investigators noted in a news release from the European Society of Cardiology.
The researchers also found that risk factors for palpitations included lifestyle issues such as drinking and smoking, and biological factors such as age, blood pressure, diabetes and body mass index (a measurement based on height and weight).”
The data is not strong enough to conclude that palpitations directly cause problems with heart rhythm. However, there was enough of a link to easily suggest a relationship between the two. You can’t help some biological factors, so to keep your heart healthy, make sure you take advantage of what you can control. Eat right, exercise, and don’t smoke!
Do you have a heart health question for Dr. Malinski? Let him know in the comments.