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Doctors & patients are saying about 'Beat Your A-Fib'...

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"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...."

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 FAQs Understanding A-Fib: Fibrosis

FAQs Understanding Your A-Fib“How can I determine or measure how much fibrosis I have? I’ve had A-Fib for several years and have read that it may produce fibrosis and collagen deposits in the atrium. Can something non-invasive like a CT scan measure fibrosis?”

The more one stays in A-Fib, the more fibrosis and collagen are formed in the atrium (the remodeling effect). Electrophysiologists (EPs) can measure fibrosis by going inside the heart and mapping fibrosis with a voltage monitoring catheter or, more commonly today, by an MRI.

Dr. Nassir Marrouche, University of Utah School Of Medicine, has pioneered the use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to measure fibrotic heart tissue. MRI is better than fluoroscopy and CAT scans because it reveals damaged, fibrotic tissue due to atrial fibrillation. In addition to other factors, Dr. Marrouche considers the amount of fibrosis in the left atrium as key to ablation treatment success. (To learn more, see my report from the 2014 Boston AF Symposium: High Fibrosis at Greater Risk of Stroke and Precludes Catheter Ablation: Lessons Learned from the DECAAF Trial.)

Anyone in A-Fib might want to consider an MRI to measure their level of fibrosis. But currently only a few A-Fib centers do this.

Thanks to Stewart Stafford for this question.
Resources for this article
¤ Spragg, D., et al. Role of Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Atrial Fibrosis in Atrial Fibrillation Ablation. Arrhythmia & Electrophysiology Review 2013;2(2):124-7.

¤  Breakthrough: Use of MRI in Catheter Ablation for Atrial Fibrillation. website. November 7, 2008 Last accessed March 29, 2014 URL:

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Last updated: September 19, 2019

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