Abbreviated Terms

Hi everyone hope you are all having a goodish day on Planet A F. I was encouraged to ask questions following my first post so here goes. There are a bewildering number of Abbreviated terms which I am trying to decipher as follows... PAF ,PIP, CHAD/VASC, Ventricular Rate, NOAC, PVC'S, PAC's, Ablation, AV Node Ablation, DC Cardioverted, Sinus Rhythm, QOL, PVC'S, Vagally Mediated, Vagal AF, PVI. I feel a bit foolish asking but it would be helpful if Newbies like me could understand the terms from the start. As I get round to reading more posts the terminology will make sense.

Kind Regards


13 Replies

  • There may be a list somewhere.

    PAF is usually paroxysmal atrial fibrillation - it comes and goes and isn't there all the time. There's also persistent atrial fibrillation which doesn't stop on its own or with a pill-in-the-pocket and needs to be shifted by a cardioversion. There is also permanent atrial fibrillation which is there all the time and doesn't respond to cardioversion.

    PIP (pill-in-the-pocket as above) is something like the antiarrhythmic drug flecainide which can be taken when required to stop atrial fibrillation - hopefully. Some people take flecainide on a daily basis, some just when needed and those on a low dose can do both.

    I think there's just been an explanation of CHAD/VASC earlier. *

    I'll let someone else take over or point us to a list of definitions.

  • * It was on the link mentioned in the CHADS post by sportscoach

    It is a way of assessing the risk of stroke by giving points for various things like congestive heart failure (C), high blood pressure (H), age (A), diabetes(D) and S for stroke.

  • And gender us ladies apparently are more prone to strokes yuk!!

  • Perhaps more women have strokes because, once you get to old age, there are more women than men. It's very many years since I did Economics but at the time there were more boys than girls until age 18 when they were about even and by age 80 there were two women for every man.

  • I was/sometimes still am in the same position .... flummoxed by abbreviations here. What I do is just google whatever it is and usually I find the answer.

    However ..

    PIP = Pill in Pocket = medication taken as when needed rather than regularly

    QOL = Quality of life

    NOAC = New oral anti coagulant (eg apixaban) 'New' when compared with warfarin.

    I'm sure others here will jump in with definitions for more of your terms.

    Hope that helps a bit.

  • Hello Mo - I too found it bewildering at the start and used to read the forum with 2 windows open - one for the forum and one for Wikipedia to help me decipher. There is a list of terms on the main AFA website but some of the list are

    Novel Oral Anti-Coagulant

    Pill in the Pocket

    Paroxysmal A F

    Premature Ventricular Contraction

    Premature Atrial Contraction

    Quality of Life

    Pulmonary Vein Isolation

  • Just remembered - I used to wonder why so many posters talked about crying, until I found out that sob referred to Shortness of Breath!

  • Lol! Thanks for the chuckle today!

  • Hi Maureens

    PAF Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation, it comes and goes in episodes unlike persistent AF where you are in AF all the time

    PIP Pill in Pocket, to be taken when you have an episdoe

    CHAD2Vasc is a scoring system for stroke risk when you have AF, it shows the additional risk you have of stroke

    Ventricular rate to keep it simple I will call heart beat, it's the one that is measured when you take your pulse, the Atrial rate especially when in AF will differ wildly

    NOAC is Novel Oral Anticoagulant, or the new anti-coagulants not warfarin or heparin, these do not require regular blood tests

    PVC Premature Ventricular contractions, extra beats that make your heart feel like it's flip flopping

    PACs similar to a PVC but this is a premature atrial contraction, they often result in PVCs

    Ablation, is a procedure to try and change the electrical pathways in the heart and briong you back into NSR (Normal sinus Rhythm)

    AV Node ablation is a procedure where the AV node is taken out of the electrical pathways, has to be done alongside the insertion of a pacemaker to control the heart.

    DC Cardioverted, and Cardioversion, is another procedure hooking you up to electrical paddles to bring the heart into NSR (see above) usually done unde anaesthetic if planned, take a few minutes only..

    Sinus Rhythm or NSR is what we all crave, normal heart beat

    QOL Quality of LIfe, usual measure for decision whether or not to have an ablation.

    PVCs see above repeated

    Vagal Mediated and Vagal AF, means Atrial Fibrillation which is linked to the vagal nerve, much more research needed on this search vagal on this forum for more information

    PVI Pulmonary vein isolation, usually the result of an ablation, but can be done in other ways (I think)

    Hope this helps

    Be well


  • Hi Beencounter and all who have responded to my request for a breakdown of Abbreviated terms. I now have a reference Library to which I will refer. Now off to sit in a darkened room and revise them. Many tks.


  • Hi:)

    NOAC - Novel Oral Anti-Coagulant. This includes 'newer' types of anticoagulants that are Not Vitamin K antagonists (Vitamin K Antagonists would include Warfarin). Apixaban, Dabigatran, rivaroxaban, edoxaban are all NOACS . Noacs are considered just as, or more effective than Warfarin, and generally have a lower bleeding risk as well.

    PVC - premature ventricular complex/contraction. These are premature heart beats that originate in the ventricles. the may be felt as a skipped beat. They are considered benign in a structurally healthy heart.

    PAC- premature atrial complex/contraction. These are premature heart beats that originate in the Atria. the may be felt as a skipped beat, or a thud in the chest, similarly to PVCs, they are considered benign in a structurally healthy heart.

    QOL- Quality of Life

    Sinus Rhythm- normal heart rhythm (NOT in arythmia). The beat's impulses come from the Sinus node, the normal pacemaker area for the heart.

    For more information on the heart and arythmia, I highly recommend watching the videos made by Dr. Sanjay Gupta of York Cardiology. Often members will post links here. He offers very clear and concise explanations:)

  • Let me give CHADS2 score as per Steven Reinberg of the HealthDay. " The CHADS2 score breaks down this way: C stands for congestive heart failure, H for high blood pressure, A for age 75 or older, and D for diabetes. S stands for stroke, and the 2 gives an extra point for a previous stroke."

  • What an enlightening post! I've copied and pasted all these terms....they'll not catch ME out again! 😊

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