The challenge of AF

Wednesday 23rd May

Helping Clinicians confront the burden of Cardiac Arrhythmias and Stroke Prevention


The global burden of cardiac arrhythmias is huge. Patients with Atrial Fibrillation (AF) face an increased risk of stroke, dementia, heart failure and death. AF (or AFib) is the most common arrhythmia encountered in clinical practice and is a global epidemic with an estimated worldwide prevalence in 2010 of almost 34 million people. The condition is expected to more than double over the next 35 years, which underscores the huge burden of AF and the need for newer, more effective ways of improving its detection and treatment.


Many patients affected by AF are asymptomatic or experience brief episodes that could be wrongly attributed to other conditions. Individuals with AF that are undiagnosed or go untreated may be at increased risk for stroke and overall mortality. Holter monitors that typically monitor patients for 24-48 hours run the risk of not capturing AF in a significant proportion of your presenting patients.


Stroke is the second leading cause of disability in Europe and is the sixth leading cause worldwide. Women have a higher lifetime risk of stroke than men: about one in five women and one in six men will suffer a stroke in their lifetime. The number of stroke events in Europe is projected to rise from 1.1 million in 2000 to 1.5 million per year by 2025, largely due to the ageing population.


In the EU, it is estimated that the annual economic cost of stroke is an estimated €27 billion, with an additional €11.1 billion related to informal patient care. People with AF have a five times greater chance of having a stroke and up to 30% of all strokes result directly from AF.


Clinical evidence supporting Zensor™ device for AF diagnostic


The Zensor™ device has been used by hundreds of patients in Europe and the US to date. At Tallaght University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland, a study was undertaken to identify high risk patients with AF. The device was proven to deliver a convenient and reliable method of diagnosing AF in a high risk population. Dr Robert Kelly, Consultant Cardiologist and Dr Rónán Collins, Consultant Geriatrician and National Clinical Lead on Stroke, designed and executed a screening study to confirm the efficacy of screening patients with pre-existing associated risk factors using a number of criteria from the Wilson-Junger Criteria as set out in the WHO screening programme.


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