Acute Management of Atrial Fibrillation: Part II. Prevention of Thromboembolic Complications - Article

ABSTRACT: Family physicians should be familiar with the acute management of atrial fibrillation and the initiation of chronic therapy for this common arrhythmia. Initial management should include hemodynamic stabilization, rate control, restoration of sinus rhythm, and initiation of antithrombotic therapy. Part II of this two-part article focuses on the prevention of thromboembolic complications using anticoagulation. Heparin is routinely administered before medical or electrical cardioversion. Warfarin is used in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation who are at higher risk for thromboembolic complications because of advanced age, history of coronary artery disease or stroke, or presence of left-sided heart failure. Aspirin is preferred in patients at low risk for thromboembolic complications and patients with a high risk for falls, a history of noncompliance, active bleeding, or poorly controlled hypertension. The recommendations provided in this article are consistent with guidelines published by the American Heart Association and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Thromboembolism - Clinical Evidence Handbook

Thromboembolism - Clinical Evidence Handbook

Evidence-Based Initiation of Warfarin (Coumadin) - Point-of-Care Guides

Evidence-Based Adjustment of Warfarin (Coumadin) Doses - Point-of-Care Guides

Low-Molecular-Weight Heparin for Initial Treatment of Venous Thromboembolism - Cochrane for Clinicians

American Thoracic Society Develops Guidelines on Diagnosis of Venous Thromboembolism - Practice Guidelines

Evaluation of Asymptomatic Atrial Fibrillation - FPIN's Clinical Inquiries

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