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#271 – Be still my quivering heart: alcohol and atrial fibrillation

Clinical Question: Does advising patients to abstain from alcohol prevent atrial fibrillation recurrence?

Bottom Line: Observational studies consistently report a doseresponse association between alcohol and new onset atrial fibrillation. Based on 1 randomized controlled trial (RCT) of “regular drinkers” with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, recurrence of atrial fibrillation happened in ~50% who abstain compared to ~70% who continue drinking. Abstaining can prevent 1 atrial fibrillation-related hospital visit for every 9 people compared to those who continue to drink at 6 months.

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