If you have started to notice that you have a rapid heartbeat, dizziness, heaviness in your chest or even lightheadedness, you may be dealing with atrial fibrillation. This is the most common kind of irregular heartbeat, otherwise known as cardiac arrhythmia. There are several different options when it comes to treatment for atrial fibrillation after the diagnosis is made. The strategy that your doctor will come up with could depend on a variety of factors, including whether or not you are able to take certain medications. In more extreme cases, you may be scheduled for a medical procedure or surgery to remedy the situation.
There are some people who may have an underlying condition that could trigger atrial fibrillation, such as a thyroid disorder. Treating any underlying condition first could be the best way to help alleviate the heart rhythm problems that you are experiencing. Your doctor could then work to do electrical cardioversion to reset the rhythm of your heart. This is a procedure where there is a shock delivered to your heart to stop it momentarily to reset it as you are placed under sedation.
Cardioversion with the assistance of drugs is another treatment option that introduces anti-arrhythmics to bring about a normal rhythm once again. Depending on the condition that your heart is in, your doctor might even recommend the use of oral or intravenous medications to try getting your heart back to a normal rhythm. These options are done at the hospital where you are continuously monitored so make sure that your heart rate goes back to normal and that nothing goes wrong.
Prior to any sort of cardioversion, your physician may give you some sort of blood thinning medication to help reduce any risk of you developing blood clots that could lead to stroke during or after the procedure.