Researchers have demonstrated for the first time that obese people with atrial fibrillation (AF) can reduce or reverse the condition by losing weight.
The analysis included 355 overweight or obese participants with AF from the Long-Term Effect of Goal-Directed Weight Management in an Atrial Fibrillation Cohort: A Long-Term Follow-Up (LEGACY) study. Weight loss was categorised as: group one (<3%), group two (3-9%), and group three (≥10%). Change in AF type was determined by clinical review and seven-day Holter yearly. AF type was categorised as per the Heart Rhythm Society consensus.
The authors found that in Group one, 41 per cent progressed from paroxysmal to persistent AF and 26 per cent from persistent to paroxysmal or no AF. In Group two, 32 per cent progressed from paroxysmal to persistent AF and 49 per cent reversed from persistent to paroxysmal or no AF. Notably in Group three, 3 per cent progressed to persistent AF and 88 per cent reversed from persistent to paroxysmal or no AF.
Presenting the findings in the journal Europace, the authors said the findings provide further insight into the role of upstream intervention to potentially alter the AF disease process.