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The Yield of External Loop Recorder Compared to Pulse Palpation and ECG Rhythm to Detect Asymptomatic Atrial Fibrillation in a Community-Based Population
- Author / Creator
- Albilali, Abdulrazaq S.
Background and Purpose: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is one of the most common
cardiac arrhythmia in the general population, and the most frequent source of
cardiac emboli in patients with ischemic stroke.! The majority of AF events are
underdiagnosed, as they are often asymptomatic or intermittent, and may not be
detected by standard 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) or Holter monitor.! We
have evaluated the diagnostic yield of a 21-day External-Loop Recorder (ELR) to
detect AF events compared to pulse palpation and baseline ECG rhythm.!!
Methods:!We enrolled 48 participants, 65 years of age or older with no history of
atrial fibrillation, stroke or transient ischemic attack from three retirement/assisted
facilities and one community clinic in Edmonton. The primary outcome was to
detect any AF event (≥ 3 seconds) during the monitoring period.
Results: The median ELR monitoring duration was 19 days (range 1-22 days)
resulting in an AF detection rate of 27% (13/48), of which 77% (10/13) were < 30
seconds. Paroxysmal atrial tachycardia (PAT) was detected in 50% (24/48) of the
participants. Pulse palpation was irregular in 3 participants and only 15% (2/13)
of the participants with positive ELR results had irregular pulse palpation (p =
0.01). ECG baseline rhythm detected non-sinus rhythm in 6 participants, of which
only 3 (50%) had AF events detected by the ELR.
Conclusion: There is a significantly high rate of asymptomatic AF (mostly < 30
seconds) detected by the ELR compared to pulse palpation in the community
population. The use of external loop recorders to evaluate for AF or PAF may be
considered in patients at high risk for stroke.!
- Graduation date
- Fall 2014
- Type of Item
- Master of Science
- This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.