ABOUT 'BEAT YOUR A-FIB'...


"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"



ABOUT A-FIB.COM...


"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


General

A-Fib.com Glossary of Terms and Phrases: Recent Additions

Recent additions to our A-Fib.com Glossary of Medical Terms and Phrases:A-Fib.com Glossary of Terms on notepad

Heart Failure:
A “failed” heart is NOT one that has suddenly stopped. Instead, it occurs when the heart is unable to pump enough blood to the other organs to satisfy their need for oxygen and nutrients. It usually manifests as tiredness and weakness, breathlessness and swelling of the legs and abdomen.

Atrial Kick:
The force or strength of the atrial contraction (which forces blood into the ventricles).

Fibrosis:
Fiber-like characteristics that develop in place of the normal smooth walls of the heart making you more vulnerable to A‑Fib…Over time it makes the heart stiff, less flexible and weak, overworks the heart, reduces pumping efficiency and leads to other heart problems…read the entire definition

Check it out. Bookmark it! Refer to it often!

The A-Fib.com Glossary of Medical Terms and Phrases is the most complete online glossary devoted exclusively to Atrial Fibrillation. Each definition is written in everyday language—a great resource for patients and their families.

(See Glossary of Terms in the left menu.) If you don’t find the term you are looking for—email us and we’ll add it to our Glossary.

A-Fib.com HON Certified for 8th Year: ‘Health Information You Can Trust’

Once again, A-Fib.com has earned the Health On the Net Foundation (HON) Certification for quality and trustworthiness of medical and health online information. The Health On the Net Foundation (HON) Code of Conduct helps protect citizens from misleading health information.

The voluntary HONcode accreditation program sets out a standardized criterion of eight principles of good practice for health information web sites. Each applicant is checked for compliance by a review committee including medical professionals.

Our 2017-2018 Active Certification & Dynamic Seal

The A-Fib.com HON seal is displayed in the footer of our web page and is directly linked to the A-Fib.com HONcode certificate located on the HON website.

HON Certified: Websites You Can Trust

When browsing healthcare sites on the web, look for the HON Code certificate. Learn more at Health On the Net Foundation (HON) Certification.

High-Quality Illustration of the Heart’s Electrical System

The Heart's Electrical System Illustration

The Heart’s Electrical System: scroll down page

Update March 15: Standby…shortly we expect permission from the Cleveland Clinic to post this graphic on our website for the viewing and printing by our readers.

March 11: Sorry—free image for printing no longer available. (We’ll try to get permission to provide a print version.) Keep a copy of this illustration handy for the next time you talk with your doctor about the workings of your heart. You can make notes directly on the picture. Print your own copy and store it in yourA-Fib Binder or folder“.

VIEW this detailed, high-quality illustration of the Heart’s Electrical System on the Cleveland Clinic website (scroll down the page).
A-Fib.com Library of videos and animations

Video: You may also want to watch the video, How Your Heart Works and Understanding Arrhythmias, or one of several heart animations from our A-Fib.com Video & Animations Library.

Also see our Free Offers and Downloads page.

New FAQ: Do Ablations Only Treat A-Fib Symptoms and Not a “Cure”?

We’ve posted a new FAQ and answer about curing Atrial Fibrillation with catheter ablation versus successful drug therapy:

Q: “I’ve read that an ablation only treats A-Fib symptoms, that it isn’t a “cure.” If I take meds like flecainide which stop all A-Fib symptoms and have no significant side effects, isn’t that a ‘cure?’”

My answer: A successful catheter ablation doesn’t just treat A-Fib symptoms, it physically changes your heart.

Isolates PVs: An ablation closes off the openings around your pulmonary veins (PVs) so A-Fib signals from the Pulmonary Veins (PVs) can no longer get into your heart.

It electrically ‘isolates’ your PVs, and if successful and permanent, you should be protected from developing A-Fib that originates from your PVs (where most A-Fib originates).

Recurrence Rates: Older research showed that recurrence of A-Fib after an ablation occurred at a 7% rate out to five years. But this was before the use of the newer techniques of Contact Force Sensing catheters and CryoBalloon ablation which make more permanent lesion lines around your Pulmonary Veins.

Also, people with comorbidities, like sleep apnea…continue reading my answer…

Attending the 2017 AF Symposium in Orlando, FL

I’m in Orlando, FL, for several days attending the AF Symposium 2017.

The annual AF Symposium (formerly called the Boston AF Symposium) is an intensive and highly focused three-day scientific forum that brings together the world’s leading medical scientists, researchers and cardiologists to share the most recent advances in the treatment of atrial fibrillation.

I attend in order to offer A-Fib.com readers the most up-to-date A-Fib research findings and developments that may impact the treatment choices of patients who are seeking their A-Fib cure (or best outcome).

Look for my reports and brief summaries in the coming weeks and months.

Illustration: The Vagal Nerve

The Vagal Nerve - A-Fib.com

Illustration: The Vagal Nerve; Source: Wikimedia.org

Happy Birthday, Steve!

It’s your birthday, and it’s amazing
how easy and enjoyable it is to be with you each day.
It’s your birthday, and no matter what fate has in store for us,
I know it will be a pleasure to spend life with you.

It’s your birthday, but I got the gift—
You in my life for another year.

With love forever, Patti

Donate: Help A-Fib.com Become a Self-Supporting Site, but Still Ad-Free

Donate to Help A-Fib.com Become a Self-Supporting Site, but Still Ad-Free

A-Fib.com (A-Fib, Inc) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to patient education of those with Atrial Fibrillation and their families, and to empowering patients to find their A-Fib cure or best outcome. Won’t you join us? Donate Today. Support our Mission!

Donate Today through PayPal
(you don’t need a PayPal account to pay by credit card)


 
 Do it NOW!


Or Mail Us a Check, send to:

Steve S. Ryan
A-Fib.com
30765 Pacific Coast Hwy., Ste. 259
Malibu, CA 90265

Your Support is Needed and Appreciated.

“I’m happy to donate [to A-Fib.com]. Steve has always been very helpful answering my questions. You guys do a great job for a good cause! God bless,”

Mary Jo Hamlin, Liverpool, NY

December 2016 


Graphic Quote: I Want to Cure my A-Fib, Not Just Manage It

for-many-a-fib-patients-3-600-x-1530-pix-at-300-res


 “For many A-Fib patients, their best outcome came about only when they told their doctors, ‘I want to cure my A-Fib, not just manage it’. “

Steve S. Ryan, former A-Fib patient, from his book, Beat Your A-Fib: The Essential Guide to Finding Your Cure. A-Fib-free since 1998.


Don’t Live With A-Fib: Seek Your Cure

The goal of today’s A-Fib treatment guidelines is to get A-Fib patients back into normal sinus rhythm (NSR).

A-Fib Zebub - Seek your cure! At A-Fib.com

Ignore A-Fib Zebub. Seek your cure!

Treatment options includes antiarrhythmic drugs, chemical and electrocardioversion, catheter ablation and mini-maze surgery.

Unless too feeble, there’s no good reason to just leave someone in A-Fib.

Don’t let your doctor leave you in A-Fib. Educate yourself. Learn your treatment options. And always aim for a Cure!

Updated Article on Sleep Apnea Home Testing

Philips Respironics "Alice NightOne Sleep Apnea in-home test at A-Fib.com

Philips’ Alice NightOne

We’ve updated our article: Sleep Apnea: Home Testing with WatchPAT Device and the Philips Respironics.

There are several FDA-approved sleep study devices you can use in the comfort of your own bedroom to determine if you have sleep apnea. And it’s convenient (especially if being away from home overnight is problematic).

Everyone with A-Fib should be tested for sleep apnea. It’s now available at a fraction of the cost of an in-lab sleep study ($250-$300 vs. $1100-$2,000).

We’ve added the Philips Alice™ NightOne home test. Continue to the updated article…

 

Keep A-Fib.com Independent and Ad-Free: Shop Amazon.com

Use our portal link to shop Amazon.com http://tinyurl.com/Shop-Amazon-for-A-Fib

Bookmark the A-Fib.com portal link to Amazon.com; use every time.

Help us maintain our independence along with ‘no third-party advertising’. We are commited to having no distracting Google or Yahoo ads that clutter the page and interrupt your reading.

My goal: make A-Fib.com a self-sustaining site. You can help.

When shopping online, use our Amazon portal link to shop at Amazon.com. Each of your purchases generates a small commission that’s applied to the monthly costs of publishing A-Fib.com. And it costs you nothing extra.

Bookmark this Link. Use it every time. Your support is needed and much appreciated. (http://tinyurl.com/Shop-Amazon-for-A-Fib)

Or Donate to A-Fib.com Using PayPal

A-Fib, Inc. (A-Fib.com) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. A second method to support our patient educational efforts is by a cash donation. Just use the PayPal button below.


Support A-Fib.com.
Every donation helps, even just $1.00


 

Infographic: A-Fib & Sleep Apnea—The Life-Threatening Risks


Sleep Apnea is common amount Atrial Fibrillation

At least 43% of patients with Atrial Fibrillation suffer from Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) as well.

Sleep Apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep. Breathing pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes. They may occur 30 times or more an hour. Typically, normal breathing then starts again, sometimes with a loud snort or choking sound.

It is now established that there’s a correlation between Sleep Apnea and A-Fib.

 

Update: ICE Numbers in Cell Phones are No Longer a Useful Solution

ICE entry on cell phone - A-Fib.com

ICE entry on phone

Last December, we posted: Got A-Fib? Add ICE to Your Cell Phone. (ICE stands for “In case of emergency” entries in your cell phone address book.)

Started by a paramedic in Britain, ICE entries allow first responders (i.e., paramedics, firefighters) to contact the cell phone owner’s next of kin to obtain important medical information.

What’s the Problem with ICE Entries?

MedIDs.com wallet card - A-Fib.com

MedIDs.com wallet card

Many modern ‘smart’ cell phones require a passcode to unlock and access the owner’s address book. This prevents medical staff from getting to your emergency contact info.

Solution: Carry a written copy, too. Write down your medical contact information and include in your wallet, medical ID bracelet or necklace. A good place to start is a wallet card as most of us usually have our wallets handy.

Print a Custom ICE Card

GetICE.com template - A-Fib.com

GetICE.com template

To help you make your ICE or medical ID, we have two Free online sources for printing your own wallet cards.

• MedIDs.com
• GetICECard.com by ICE Gear

Both offer an online form (with nothing to install or download) to customize with your information. Then, print, trim, fold and add to your wallet or purse. (Note: none of your personal information is stored on their websites.)

ICE Gear laminated tag- A-Fib.com

ICE Gear laminated tag

Other Options: Key Ring or Gym Bag Tag

If you want a key ring tag, ICE Gear offers a personalized laminated tag at a very reasonable price.

ICE Gear laminated cards - A-Fib.com

ICE Gear laminated cards.

Similar in size to your gym or grocery loyalty tags, they can be attached to car keys, shoe laces (for runners), zippers, gym bags and more.

Made with durable, high-visibility materials. For $9.99 you get 4 tags. Shipping is free.

ICE Gear also offers a more detailed custom, laminated credit card-type wallet card for $11.99.

Related reading: ‘What Emergency Medical Info Should You Carry With You?

Taking Supplements? How to Time Your Daily Doses

Updated November, 10, 2016

If you take several supplements (like I do), you may wonder:

Should I take them at the same time each day? Or should I spread doses throughout the day? Should I take with meals? Or on an empty stomach?”

The best answer may depend on whether you are taking medication, on the specific supplement and/or on your personal life style.

Medication Inventory form

Medication Inventory form

Start with the ‘Suggested Use’

Read the supplement label. Some are fairly specific, i.e., “with or without food”, or “with food” or “on an empty stomach”; or specific time (morning or bedtime) or in divided dosages. Make notes for each supplement. Download and use this FREE form to help you keep track of everything.

Do you Have Other Medical Conditions?

If you have diabetes, hypertension or heart disease, first talk to your doctor or pharmacist. Combining supplements with prescription medications, can produce unexpected or life-threatening results.

They may offer advice specific to the combinations of your meds and supplements.

Do Some Reading, Take Some Notes

The best time to take a specific vitamin or supplement may depend on the specific supplement. Do some reading on each at the library or at a reputable website or two. Make notes of the information you find. A few examples:

• Taking a single dose multi-vitamin? It’s best to take it in the morning when nutrients are depleted and with or near breakfast so it’s broken down, then digested with the food.
• Vitamin D is best absorbed after your biggest meal, usually dinner, averaging 56 percent greater boost than those who take it without food.
• Calcium supplement, don’t take along with a multivitamin containing iron. The calcium may interfere with the iron’s absorption.
• Magnesium may be best taken in the evening, since Magnesium may support sound sleep.

Healthy Directions, Dr. David Williams

On the website Healthy Directions, Dr. David Williams offers advice about the best times to take vitamins. He lists specific vitamins and supplements and organized them into three groups, those that should be taken before meals, with meals, or in-between meals. See his article for specifics, The Best Times to Take Your Vitamins

[Healthy Directions offers advanced nutritional supplements and guidance from highly respected integrative and alternative health doctors including Julian Whitaker, MDDr. David WilliamsDr. Stephen Sinatra, MD and others.]

My favorite independent research sites

For reliable, unbiased research and information on specific vitamins and supplements, we recommend these three sites (in order or preference). None of the three sell supplements (or anything else). They just offer information on vitamins, herbs, natural products and supplements.

memorial-sloan-kettering-cancer-center-logo1. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute/Integrative Medicine: “About Herbs, Botanicals & Other Products
2. Drugs.com: ‘MedFacts Natural Products Professional database
3. The ‘Dietary Supplement Label Database’ at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

Adjust for Your Life Style

You may need to adjust your supplement taking to accommodate work or school demands, family schedules, etc. For example, if you work the swing shift, your “morning” dose may need to be 1 pm, and your ‘evening’ doze may need to be at 2 am.

Or, if you often skip meals during your work day, taking equally divided doses may become erratic. So, it may be better taking your doses before you go to work.

EZY Dose-4-times a day organizer - A-Fib.com

EZY Dose-4-times a day organizer

Bottom Line: Try to be Consistent

For optimum benefit, it may take some effort to work up your supplement schedule. But you don’t have to obsess about it. Since these are ‘natural’ substances (vs. prescription drugs), you usually don’t have to be overly careful about when you take them. What’s important is do try to be consistent from day to day.

After you work out your schedule, consider using a vitamin/supplement organizer. Check out My Search for the Best 7-Day Medicine/Vitamin Organizer.

For more answers to your questions about mineral deficiencies, see our: FAQ Minerals & Supplements

For more on where to research specific vitamins and supplements see, FAQ Minerals Deficiencies: Reliable Research.

Will You Help Us? Our 5-Question Reader Survey

This survey has ended. Look for our next reader survey.
Thanks to all who participated.

We value your feedback on how we are doing at A-Fib.com. Will you help us by answering just 5 simple questions? It’s easy and should only take 1–2 minutes.

Go to our Reader Survey. We’ll be collecting responses through October 26th. 

We’ll use the information to help us set future goals while continuing what’s already useful to you. Help us make A-Fib.com the ‘go to’ site for Atrial Fibrillation patients and their families.

We Need Your Opinion!

How Are We Doing? 5-Question Reader Survey

Oops! Lost connection, working on it.It appears that this quiz is not set up correctly

Why You Need an A-Fib Notebook and 3-Ring Binder

As you search for your Atrial Fibrillation cure, you will want to organize the information you are collecting. Start with a notebook and a three-ring binder or a file folder.

What to Include in Your A-Fib Binder

Your A-Fib binder is where you should file and organize all your A-Fib-related treatment information, such as:

• contact list of all health care providers and facilities
• lab test results, EKG strips and other medical records
• office visit notes and phone calls
• list of all medications
• health insurance claims and records
• records of any major medical event from the past two years
• completed worksheets and blanks ready for use
• research from the internet or medical center library

Available free worksheets: 10 Questions to Ask Before Taking Any Drug; 10 Questions to Ask When Interviewing any Doctor; Pre-visit First Appointment Worksheet; Keep an Inventory List of Your Medications

Make Medical Record-Keeping a Habit Graphic at A-Fib.com

Make Medical Record-Keeping a Habit

Make Medical Record-Keeping a Habit

We strongly encourage you to get in the habit of keeping a copy of every test result you get in your three-ring binder. Don’t leave your doctor’s office, medical center or hospital without a copy of every test or procedure they perform. If the test result isn’t immediately available, have them mail it to you.

If you are missing some records, read our article, How to Request Copies of your Medical Records. We give you three ways to request your medical records from your doctors and medical providers.

Add Your Personal A-Fib Summary

My personal A-Fib Medical summary at A-Fib.com

Doctors appreciate knowledgeable, informed, and prepared patients. Each doctor will probably ask you much the same questions.

For efficiency, prepare your ‘Personal A-Fib Medical Summary’ and include a copy with each packet of medical records you send to doctors. Store the original and copies in your binder.

See our article on how to create Your Personal A-Fib Medical Summary.

Atrial Fibrillation is a progressive disease Infographic at A-Fib.com

Click to enlarge this Infographic

Packets for Each New Doctor

Your A-Fib Binder holds all the information you need when seeing a new doctor (or interviewing a prospective doctor). You will want to send ahead of time a packet with your medical records, test results, and any applicable images or X-rays.

Monitor Progress of your A-Fib

Because A-Fib is a progressive disease, you should track if your heart’s measurements are getting worse, and by how much.

Ask your doctor for details of your heart dimensions and functions, including the diameter and volume of the left atrium, your Ejection Fraction (EF) and any other test results.

For future reference, store this benchmark data in your A-Fib binder.

Your A-Fib Binder is a Valuable Resource.
It will help you find your A-Fib cure!

That Demon on Your Shoulder Called ‘A-Fib-Zebub’

For Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month, we are introducing a little character called “That Demon A-Fib-Zebub“. He’s that little voice that’s whispers in your ear “You don’t look sick! A-Fib’s not that bad. You can live with it”.

ezgif-com-gif-maker640

That little voice has a name: A-Fib Zebub.

When That Demon A-Fib-Zebub pops up, it time to remember that A-Fib is not benign, but a progressive disease. It’s not a “nuisance arrhythmia” as some doctors consider it.

And you should not just “take your meds and get used to it” (as one doctor told his patient). Who wants this demon on their shoulder?

From time to time, That Demon A-Fib-Zebub will float into our infographics and posts.

Don’t Settle for a Lifetime on Meds: Aim for A Cure

A-Fib is definitely curable. (I was cured of my A-Fib in 1998). If you have A-Fib, no matter how long you’ve had it, you should aim for a complete and permanent cure.

Don’t listen to A-Fib-Zebub. Instead, seek encouragement from other patients. Select from our list of over 80 Personal A-Fib stories of Hope to learn how others are dealing with this demon we call Atrial Fibrillation.

Do not learn to live with Atrial Fibrillation. 

Seek Your Cure!

 

Announcing: The A-Fib.com Advisory Board

I’m proud to announce the launch of The A-Fib.com Advisory Board.

Since the start of A-Fib.com in 2002, many cardiac electrophysiologists (EP) and surgeons have given me invaluable advice and support. They have helped make our website the ‘go-to’ destination for over 350,000 visitors a year. In fact, for three years running, we’ve been recognized by Healthline.com as a top A-Fib blog.

It’s a great blessing to be able to tap into the knowledge and experience of these talented professionals when writing on a difficult A-Fib subject or to get help for an A-Fib.com reader with a difficult case.

From all regions of the U.S., and from France, The Netherlands, Switzerland and Australia, these doctors may not always agree with all my positions, but they try to point me in the right direction.

The A-Fib.com Advisory Board is my way to publicly thank them and acknowledge their continued support. We invite readers to browse the names of members and their affiliations.

Visit our “About Us” to find the link to The A-Fib.com Advisory Board page (or use the ‘Search” box).

September is A-Fib Awareness Month: Share our Infographic

Infographic - September is Atrial Fibrillation Month at A-Fib.com

Click image to see full Infographic.

This is the month we focus on reaching those who may have Atrial Fibrillation and don’t know it.

An estimated 30%−50% of those affected with Atrial Fibrillation are unaware they have it—often only learning about their A-Fib during a routine medical exam.

Of untreated patients, 35% will suffer a stroke. Half of all A-Fib-related strokes are major and disabling.

To spread the word about Atrial Fibrillation, A-Fib.com offers a new infographic to educate and inform the public about this healthcare issue.

See the full infographic here. (Then Share it, Pin it, Download it.)

Follow Us
facebook - A-Fib.comtwitter - A-Fib.comlinkedin  - A-Fib.compinterest  - A-Fib.comYouTube: A-Fib Can be Cured!  - A-Fib.com


A-Fib.com is a
501(c)(3) Nonprofit



Your support is needed. Every donation helps, even just $1.00.


We Need You
A-Fib.com Mission Statement
BYA - Alerts ad Green

A-Fib.com top rated by Healthline.com for the third year.
A-Fib.com top rated by Healthline.com for the third year. 2014  2015  2016

Mug - Seek your cure - Beat Your A-Fib 200 pix wide at 300 resEncourage others
with A-Fib
click to order

Home | The A-Fib Coach | Help Support A-Fib.com | A-Fib News Archive | Tell Us What You think | Media Room | GuideStar Seal | HON certification | Disclosures | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy