"This book is incredibly complete and easy-to-understand for anybody. I certainly recommend it for patients who want to know more about atrial fibrillation than what they will learn from doctors...."

Pierre Jaïs, M.D. Professor of Cardiology, Haut-Lévêque Hospital, Bordeaux, France

"Dear Steve, I saw a patient this morning with your book [in hand] and highlights throughout. She loves it and finds it very useful to help her in dealing with atrial fibrillation."

Dr. Wilber Su Cavanaugh Heart Center, Phoenix, AZ

"Your book [Beat Your A-Fib] is the quintessential most important guide not only for the individual experiencing atrial fibrillation and his family, but also for primary physicians, and cardiologists."

Jane-Alexandra Krehbiel, nurse, blogger and author "Rational Preparedness: A Primer to Preparedness"


"Steve Ryan's summaries of the Boston A-Fib Symposium are terrific. Steve has the ability to synthesize and communicate accurately in clear and simple terms the essence of complex subjects. This is an exceptional skill and a great service to patients with atrial fibrillation."

Dr. Jeremy Ruskin of Mass. General Hospital and Harvard Medical School

"I love your [A-fib.com] website, Patti and Steve! An excellent resource for anybody seeking credible science on atrial fibrillation plus compelling real-life stories from others living with A-Fib. Congratulations…"

Carolyn Thomas, blogger and heart attack survivor; MyHeartSisters.org

"Steve, your website was so helpful. Thank you! After two ablations I am now A-fib free. You are a great help to a lot of people, keep up the good work."

Terry Traver, former A-Fib patient

"If you want to do some research on AF go to A-Fib.com by Steve Ryan, this site was a big help to me, and helped me be free of AF."

Roy Salmon Patient, A-Fib Free; pacemakerclub.com, Sept. 2013

Nassir Marrouche MD

N. Marrouche MD

AF Symposium 2017

A-Fib Increases Fibrosis by 5%-10% Per Year

Dr. Nassir Marrouche of the University of Utah (CARMA), Salt Lake City, UT continued his ground-breaking work using MRI to investigate Atrial Fibrillation.

Some of the major contributions Dr. Marrouche’s MRI research has made include that patients with high fibrosis levels are at greater risk of stroke and that they may be precluded from a successful catheter ablation.

(For more about stroke risk, see Dr. Marrouche’s High Fibrosis at Greater Risk of Stroke and Precludes Catheter Ablation: Lessons Learned from the DECAAF Trial.)

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a technique that uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of organs.

Fibrosis Develops Rapidly, Within One Year

Dr. Marrouche’s latest research shows that about 35% of patients with A-Fib will experience more than 5%-10% of fibrotic changes within 1 year. (This is a frightening statistic, since fibrosis is currently considered irreversible.)

He also described how the more fibrosis a patient has, the more likely the patient will have a recurrence after an A-Fib ablation.

He also showed how current MRI testing also measures fibrosis in 3D to better gauge its thickness.

New Study Ablating Fibrosis

Dr. Marrouche also described a new clinical trial (DECAAF II) that will compare standard Pulmonary Vein Isolation (PVI) ablation to ablation of fibrosis areas. See http://www.decaaf.org

The more fibrosis a patient has, the more likely the patient will have a recurrence after an A-Fib ablation.

What Patients Need To Know

A-Fib produces fibrosis quickly and harms your heart permanently. This fibrosis produces collagen and scarring in the heart which is a permanent remodeling effect of A-Fib.

And what a wake-call for A-Fib patients―that A-Fib fibrosis can and does develop so rapidly! Within one year of living in A-Fib, your heart can become 10% fibrotic which is irreversible. How truly frightening!

Dr. Marrouche’s Message: Don’t live in A-Fib! The message from Dr. Marrouche’s research is obvious. Don’t live in A-Fib!!! Do everything you can to be restored to normal sinus rhythm.

Return to 2017 AF Symposium Reports
If you find any errors on this page, email us. Last updated: Monday, March 6, 2017

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