Will I forever have the AFIB diagnosis after one EKG?

I am still trying to figure some things out. But my question still becomes: Will I forever have the diagnosis of AFIB after just ONE episode that the EKG captured???? A 2nd EKG and a 2 week heart monitor showed all NSR. Never have symptoms. I am taking Metoprolol and aspirin and need to decide whether or not to take a blood thinner. Next week I see the cardiologist.

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  • Hi BarbM and welcome. Basically yes. Your may not have another event for some time or you may be having them a lot and not knowing. This can happen as some people are asymptomatic. The anticoagulant (not blood thinner please it doesn't change how thick or thin your blood is) may be indicated according to your age, general health and other risk factors . Unless you have other conditions for which it is required the aspirin is more trouble than it is worth as it can still cause stomach bleeding whilst doing little for your stroke prevention.

    The other thing you need to understand is that AF is ALWAYS a progressive condition. It may not rear its ugly head for a year or so, then maybe every few months but it will always get worse I'm sorry to say. How long that takes is another matter as we are all so different. Do discuss this with your cardiologist and make sure you read as many of the fact sheets from the main website as you can as knowledge is power.. Ask any questions you want here and somebody will know the answer.


  • Yes you will .

    I had one episode of AF caught on ECG which lasted 90 minutes.

    That is paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, or PAF.

    If you have no other heart condition or disease the AF is known as lone AF, or LAF.

    I had many 'palpitations' for years, only diagnosed as 'ectopics' in the absence of anything showing up on a holter monitor, stress test or echo. Sometimes I could go a whole year with only a few a topics.

    The EP who I saw after my one and only known and recorded AF episode told me that one thing for sure is that I will be seeing more of him.

    I think if you have no other heart conditions or underlying disease and you are paroxysmal, meaning you are in NSR at all other times, then you will not be put on warfarin or similar. Perhaps just aspirin. My consultant EP says I can take aspirin if I like. So I do.

    Like you, I don't want AF either.

    I'm Sorry you have it.

    All you can do is try to find out what triggers it and avoid that thing.

    You might go a very long time, even years, without another episode.

    I hope you do.


  • Thanks for the replies. I have already decided I won't take warfrin. The doctor has said he would recommend either Pradaxa or Xarelto. We will see next week.

  • My chads2vasc score warrants warfarin. Knowing what I know now I would want an anticoagulant even if it didn't. Lucky you being offered one of the new anticoagulants. Bite their hand off to get it and feel safe that your stroke risk will be reduced. Regards Wendy B

  • Yes, lucky you, not many people get offered a new anticoagulant. I think you have to have an allergy to warfarin before they will give you one in Wales... Don't worry about the diagnosis, yes, you have AF, but it sounds as if most of the time you're either not in AF or you're not feeling it. Which is very good.


  • Take Warfarin. Or a n other anti-coagulant. Don't leave it.

  • Have to comment; most of the time my Afib causes me no symptoms. Even then with a 3 week monitor, I have progressed from being in Afib 1% of the time two years ago to 8% now. I would never count on aspirin to prevent a stroke. I'm on warfarin and haven't changed to newer meds because there is no quick reversal of them if you need it.


  • Heather, there is an reversal agent for Pradaxa available now and will be available for the other newer anticoagulants in the not too distant future.

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