A new study that was published online October 9, 2012 in Circulation may have discovered the risk factors that cause premature atrial contractions (PACs). While it is clear that PACs generally occur in patients who are older than 50, how often they occur depends on different factors, the study results note. The Swiss study was conducted by Dr. David Cohen of the University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland and his team. Their research discovered that 99 percent of AF patients older than 50 experienced at least one PAC during monitoring for 24 hours.

“These subclinical arrhythmia phenomena are of interest to me,” Cohen said to Heartwire. “PACs are very common in the clinic, and we normally say they are benign and tell the patient not to worry about it. That message should not change, but the major part of our work was that we wanted to look at what was correlated with these.”

This research is significant because previous studies have already shown that there is a link between an increased risk of AF and stroke for patients who have more PAC occurrences. Some of the others factors that play a role between AF, stroke and PACs include the patient’s age, history of heart disease and log-transformed N-terminal pro-brain-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP). Height was also a factor, in that a taller person is more likely to develop AF; however, why height matters is not fully understood yet.

Atrial fibrillation is a heart condition that is characterized by a fluttering or irregular heartbeat. The condition can often cause patients to suffer from strokes, which is why so many patients regularly take prescription medications as a means of treating the condition. One of those medications is Multaq, made by Sanofi-Aventis. Multaq is not often prescribed unless other medications fail to work because the drug can cause liver failure and worsen a patient’s heart condition.

If you or a loved one has developed liver failure or a worsening of the heart condition as a result of taking Multaq, contact attorney Greg Jones today for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Multaq lawsuits and may be able to help you recover money for your injuries.