A1 Journal article – refereed
Strokes after cardioversion of atrial fibrillation - The FibStroke study

List of Authors: Palomäki A., Mustonen P., Hartikainen J., Nuotio I., Kiviniemi T., Ylitalo A., Hartikainen P., Lehtola H., Luite R., Airaksinen J.
Publisher: Elsevier Ireland Ltd
Publication year: 2016
Journal: International Journal of Cardiology
Journal name in source: International Journal of Cardiology
Volume number: 203
Number of pages: 5
ISSN: 1874-1754


Background: Cardioversion of atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with an increased risk for stroke. We identified all cardioversions during the 30 days preceding stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) in patients with a previously diagnosed AF, and sought to assess the characteristics of cardioversions leading to stroke or TIA. Methods: FibStroke is a cross-sectional observational multicenter registry that included AF patientswith an ischemic stroke or intracranial bleed identified from a discharge registry of four Finnish hospitals. In total 3677 consecutive AF patients suffered 3252 strokes and 956 TIA episodes during 2003-2012. This pre-specified analysis focused on the 1644 events that occurred to patients with paroxysmal or persistent AF at the time of stroke/TIA. Results: A total of 78 strokes and 22 TIA episodes were preceded by a cardioversion. Post-cardioversion strokes accounted for 6.4% of strokes in patients with paroxysmal/persistent AF. Of the 100 cardioversions leading to an ischemic event, 77 were acute and 23 were elective, 63 events occurred in patients not using anticoagulation, and 5 patients had periprocedural INR b 2. Importantly, 21 patients were in low risk of stroke, i.e. CHA2DS2-VASc score b 2. The median delay from cardioversion to event was 2 days. All nine patients who after an unsuccessful cardioversion developed a stroke had a spontaneous cardioversion prior to stroke. Conclusions: Every sixteenth stroke of patients with paroxysmal/persistent AF is preceded by a cardioversion. Most post-cardioversion strokes occur in patients not using oral anticoagulation before cardioversion of acute AF.

Last updated on 2019-21-08 at 22:54