Treatment of Atrial Fibrillation - Research Review - Final | AHRQ Effective Health Care Program
New AHRQ Research Review Compares Atrial Fibrillation Treatment Strategies
Among older patients with mild symptoms from atrial fibrillation, both treatment strategies intended to slow heart rate to a normal range (rate control) and strategies to restore normal heart rhythm (rhythm control) result in comparable rates of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality and stroke, according to a new research review by AHRQ’s Effective Health Care Program. The review finds that rate-control strategies are superior to rhythm-control strategies for reducing hospitalizations from cardiovascular events. Although there are a limited number of studies that assessed comparable rate-control therapies and outcomes, there is strong evidence showing the benefit of calcium channel blockers (verapamil or diltiazem) compared with digoxin for ventricular rate control. Because of the wide range of options within each strategic treatment approach for atrial fibrillation, additional studies are needed to evaluate the comparative safety and effectiveness of individual antiarrhythmic medications and procedures, especially within specific subgroups of patients. Select to access the research review, Treatment of Atrial Fibrillation.