Common Symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation

Do you often feel like your heart has skipped a beat or two? It is normal to experience this symptom occasionally, but you might be dealing with atrial fibrillation if it happens frequently.

Atrial fibrillation is a heart condition characterized by irregular and usually rapid heartbeats. It happens when the muscles of the upper chambers (atria) of your heart stop functioning well. They start to beat arrhythmically and out of sync with the lower chambers (ventricles) of your heart. The muscles essentially start to fibrillate. Often shortened AFib, atrial fibrillation is a serious medical condition that increases your risk of stroke and heart failure. According to the American Heart Association [1], you are five times more likely to suffer a stroke than the average person when you have AFib, even if you show no symptoms. Atrial fibrillation can also lead to other potentially fatal cardiovascular complications. Most people with AFib experience episodes that are transient. Others have persistent or permanent AFib, where the symptoms do not go away on their own.

Not everyone with atrial fibrillation experiences pronounced symptoms, so they may not discover it until they undergo an examination. Others experience pronounced symptoms that sometimes reduce the quality of their life. In this article, you will learn the main symptoms of atrial fibrillation.

Dizziness or Lightheadedness

Dizziness and lightheadedness[2] are also common AFib symptoms. You may feel dizzy or lightheaded because your organs are not getting enough oxygen or because of the increase in your heart rate and blood pressure.