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Heart Rhythm. 2012 Feb;9(2):172-8. doi: 10.1016/j.hrthm.2011.09.016. Epub 2011 Sep 13.

Atorvastatin for prevention of atrial fibrillation recurrence following pulmonary vein isolation: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial.

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  • 1Rambam Medical Center, Haifa, Israel.



It is known that statins are effective in preventing atrial fibrillation (AF) in patients undergoing cardiac surgery.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of statins in preventing AF recurrence following left atrial ablation.


One hundred twenty-five patients who had no statin indication undergoing catheter ablation due to drug-refractory paroxysmal (n = 90) or persistent (n = 35) AF were randomized in a prospective, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to receive 80 mg atorvastatin (n = 62) or placebo (n = 63) for 3 months. The primary endpoint was freedom from symptomatic AF at 3 months. Secondary endpoints included freedom from any atrial arrhythmia recurrence irrespective of symptoms, quality of life (QoL), and reduction in C-reactive protein (CRP).


At 3 months, 95% of patients in the atorvastatin group were free of symptomatic AF compared with 93.5% in the placebo group (P = .75). Similarly, 85% of patients treated in the atorvastatin group remained free of any recurrent atrial arrhythmia vs 88% of patients in the placebo group (P = .37). Mean CRP levels decreased in the atorvastatin group (mean change -0.75 ± 3, P = .02) and increased in the placebo group (mean change 2.1 ± 19.9, P = .48). Mean QoL score improved significantly in both groups (mean change 13.14 ± 18.2 in the atorvastatin group and 11.10 ± 17.7 in the placebo group, P = .53).


In patients with no standard indication for statin therapy, treatment with atorvastatin 80 mg/day following AF ablation does not decrease the risk of AF recurrence in the first 3 months and should not be routinely administered to prevent periprocedural arrhythmias.

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