Left atrial appendage thrombus despite anticoagulation

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The American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association task force on practice guidelines recommend therapeutic anticoagulation for at least 3 weeks prior to cardioversion in patients with atrial fibrillation of 48-hour duration or longer, or when the duration of atrial fibrillation is unknown. This case report demonstrates the presence of thrombi in the left atrial appendage despite adequate anticoagulation, challenging the current guidelines. Therapeutic anticoagulation for at least 3 weeks followed by transesophageal echocardiography in search of thrombus may enhance thromboembolic safety of elective cardioversion. Atrial fibrillation (AF) and heart failure (HF) have emerged as major cardiovascular epidemics in developed nations over the past decade. They share similar risk factors, seem to mutually accelerate progression and are associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Their relationship involves complex hemodynamic, neuro-hormonal, inflammatory and electrophysiologic mechanisms, which go beyond just mutual risk factors. This review focuses on updates in AF and HF with a hope of better understanding this relationship and the management of this complex duo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11-13
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Atrial Fibrillation
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 1 2013


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