Association of Atrial Fibrillation and Cancer | Atrial Fibrillation | JAMA Cardiology | JAMA Network
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Editorial
July 2016

Association of Atrial Fibrillation and Cancer

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Boston University Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 2Section of Cardiovascular Medicine, Preventive Medicine, and Epidemiology, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 3National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute’s and Boston University’s Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, Massachusetts
  • 4Department of Epidemiology, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Cardiol. 2016;1(4):384-386. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2016.0582

Atrial fibrillation (AF) affects more than 33 million people worldwide.1 The prevalence in high-income countries is 1% to 4% but increases to more than 13% of persons older than 80 years of age.2 Although embolic stroke is the most feared complication, over the past few decades, AF has been associated with increased risks of myocardial infarction,3 heart failure,4 dementia,5 chronic kidney disease,6,7 venous thromboembolism,8 and mortality.9 Conversely, biologically plausible bidirectional relations have been reported, such that myocardial infarction,10 heart failure,10 chronic kidney disease,6,7 and venous thromboembolism11 are associated with increased risk of incident AF.

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