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Circulation. 2014 Feb 25;129(8):837-47. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.113.005119. Epub 2013 Dec 17.

Worldwide epidemiology of atrial fibrillation: a Global Burden of Disease 2010 Study.

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Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute, Los Angeles, CA (S.S.C., R.H., K.N., D.S.); Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden (R.H.); University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands (M.R.); Framingham Heart Study and Boston University School of Medicine and Public Health, Boston, MA (E.J.B.); Department of Medicine, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, DC (R.F.G.); Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea (Y.-H.K.); Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center, Portland, OR (J.H.M.); National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, Bethesda, MD (Z.-J.Z., G.A.M.); Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, University of Washington, Seattle (M.H.F., M.N., C.J.L.M.); and Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA (M.E.).



The global burden of atrial fibrillation (AF) is unknown.


We systematically reviewed population-based studies of AF published from 1980 to 2010 from the 21 Global Burden of Disease regions to estimate global/regional prevalence, incidence, and morbidity and mortality related to AF (DisModMR software). Of 377 potential studies identified, 184 met prespecified eligibility criteria. The estimated number of individuals with AF globally in 2010 was 33.5 million (20.9 million men [95% uncertainty interval (UI), 19.5-22.2 million] and 12.6 million women [95% UI, 12.0-13.7 million]). Burden associated with AF, measured as disability-adjusted life-years, increased by 18.8% (95% UI, 15.8-19.3) in men and 18.9% (95% UI, 15.8-23.5) in women from 1990 to 2010. In 1990, the estimated age-adjusted prevalence rates of AF (per 100 000 population) were 569.5 in men (95% UI, 532.8-612.7) and 359.9 in women (95% UI, 334.7-392.6); the estimated age-adjusted incidence rates were 60.7 per 100 000 person-years in men (95% UI, 49.2-78.5) and 43.8 in women (95% UI, 35.9-55.0). In 2010, the prevalence rates increased to 596.2 (95% UI, 558.4-636.7) in men and 373.1 (95% UI, 347.9-402.2) in women; the incidence rates increased to 77.5 (95% UI, 65.2-95.4) in men and 59.5 (95% UI, 49.9-74.9) in women. Mortality associated with AF was higher in women and increased by 2-fold (95% UI, 2.0-2.2) and 1.9-fold (95% UI, 1.8-2.0) in men and women, respectively, from 1990 to 2010. There was evidence of significant regional heterogeneity in AF estimations and availability of population-based data.


These findings provide evidence of progressive increases in overall burden, incidence, prevalence, and AF-associated mortality between 1990 and 2010, with significant public health implications. Systematic, regional surveillance of AF is required to better direct prevention and treatment strategies.


atrial fibrillation; epidemiology; incidence; prevalence; risk factors, prevention

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