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Join Atrium Health Navicent in Observing Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month

The treatment of Atrial Fibrillation is important for the prevention of strokes

Atrium Health Navicent invites the community to observe Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month during September by learning about the condition which affects 2.7 million Americans.

Atrial Fibrillation, often called AFIB, is a quivering or irregular heartbeat that can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure, and other heart-related complications. While some people may experience no symptoms, others experience irregular heartbeat, heart palpitations, lightheadedness, general fatigue, shortness of breath, anxiety, faintness, sweating, or chest pain.

The risk for AFIB increases as people get older. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), high blood pressure occurs in 1 in 5 people with AFIB. Other risk factors include obesity, diabetes, heart disease, hyperthyroidism, chronic kidney disease, heavy alcohol use, and smoking.

It’s important that AFIB patients reduce their risk for stroke and heart failure. The risk of stroke in AFIB patients is five times greater than that of a person without heart disease. Clinicians at Atrium Health Navicent remind the public to act FAST if they experience any of these signs or symptoms.

· F – Facial weakness (Can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped?)

· A – Arm or leg weakness (Can the person raise both arms?)

· S – Speech difficulty (Can the person speak clearly and understand what you say?)

· T – Time to act (Seek medical attention immediately!)

“Atrial Fibrillation is an irregular rhythm that accounts for about a third of all strokes. Strokes due to AFIB are quite debilitating, but AFIB also represents one of the causes of stroke that is easily preventable by the use of blood thinners and other treatments recommended by your heart rhythm specialist,” said Dr. Felix Sogade, Atrium Health Navicent The Medical Center’s AFIB medical director.

Medications, non-surgical procedures, and surgical procedures are available to patients with AFIB. Other ways for AFIB patients to reduce their risk for stroke include getting regular physical activity, eating a heart-healthy diet, managing blood pressure, avoiding excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine, quitting smoking, controlling cholesterol, and maintaining a healthy weight.

In observance of Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month, Atrium Health Navicent has posted a virtual “Yoga for AFIB” video at to help provide an opportunity for patients to help reduce their AFIB risk and promote healthy lifestyle choices for AFIB patients.

Atrium Health Navicent The Medical Center has an American College of Cardiology Accredited AFIB program to ensure quality care is provided to AFIB patients. The hospital also participates in the American Heart Association’s “Get with the Guidelines — AFIB” program, which requires hospitals to audit AFIB patient records and report data to ensure that AFIB quality metrics are met.

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About Atrium Health Navicent

Atrium Health Navicent is the leading provider of healthcare in central and south Georgia and is committed to its mission of elevating health and well-being through compassionate care. Atrium Health Navicent provides high-quality, personalized care in 53 specialties at more than 50 facilities throughout the region. As part of the largest, integrated, nonprofit health system in the Southeast, it is also able to tap into some of the nation’s leading medical experts and specialists with Atrium Health, allowing it to provide the best care close to home – including advanced innovations in virtual medicine and care. Throughout its 125-year history in the community, Atrium Health Navicent has remained dedicated to enhancing health and wellness for individuals throughout the region through nationally recognized quality care, community health initiatives and collaborative partnerships. It is also one of the leading teaching hospitals in the region, helping to ensure viability for rural health care for the next generation. For more information, please visit