Sunday, 25 April 2010

Diabetes Linked to Atrial Fibrillation

Diabetes Linked to Atrial Fibrillation

Diabetes has been linked to a common type of irregular heartbeat called atrial fibrillation. The new study reveals that uncontrolled blood sugar has a 40% greater risk of developing this chronically irregular heartbeat.

The study was led by Dr. Sascha Dublin of Group Health Research Institute, in which it was discovered by the researchers that the risk increases even more, if the people have been suffering from diabetes for long duration of time.

More than 1,400 Group Health patients, who had newly recognized atrial fibrillation, were tracked by the researchers for three years. These cases were compared with more than 2,200 controls, who did not suffer from atrial fibrillation.

The relationship between atrial fibrillation and the duration of patients’ diabetes and their blood sugar levels was for the first time examined in Dublin’s study. People with diabetes were 40% more likely to be diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, as compared to the people who had no diabetes, according to the researchers.

Patients having high blood sugar were two times more prone to the risk of atrial fibrillation, as compared to the people without diabetes. Dublin said, “When a patient with diabetes has symptoms like heart palpitations, clinicians should have a higher level of suspicion that the reason could be atrial fibrillation”.

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