Atrial fibrillation after cardiac surgery: Incidence, risk factors, and economic burden

Carlo Rostagno, Mark La Meir, Sandro Gelsomino, Lorenzo Ghilli, Alessandra Rossi, Enrico Carone, Lucio Braconi, Gabriele Rosso, Francesco Puggelli, Alessio Mattesini, Pier Luigi Stefno, Luigi Padeletti, Jos Maessen, Gian Franco Gensini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To evaluate the incidence of postoperative atrial fibrillation (POAF), the predisposing factors, the results of treatment before discharge, and the impact on duration and costs of hospitalization. Design: A prospective observational study. Methods: Patients who underwent cardiac surgery from January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007. Interventions: Electrocardiography was continuously monitored after surgery. Patients with symptomatic new-onset atrial fibrillation or lasting >15 minutes were treated with amiodarone and with DC shock in prolonged cases. Results: POAF occurred in 29.7%, with the higher incidence between the 1st and 4th postoperative day. Age (p <0.001), atrial size >40 mm (p <0.001), previous episodes of AF (p <0.001), female sex (p = 0.010), and combined valve and bypass surgery (p = 0.012) were multivariate predictors of POAF at logistic regression. Sinus rhythm was restored by early treatment in 205 of 215 patients. This was associated with a low incidence of cerebrovascular events (

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)952-958
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010


  • Amiodarone
  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Cardiac surgery
  • Perioperative complications

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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