All articles tagged CPAP machine

The Curious Sleep Apnea and Heart Rhythm Connection

 

After surgery, a patient with sleep apnea discovered she also had atrial fibrillation, a serious irregular heart rhythm.

 

Up to half of people with atrial fibrillation may also have trouble breathing while they sleep.

Dealing with one chronic condition can be difficult; dealing with two or more amps up the challenge for your heart. That’s something all too familiar to Rhonda Marie Clare Harvey-Collens, 52, of Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. She lives with rheumatoid arthritis, sleep apnea, and the abnormal heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation.

Harvey-Collens was diagnosed with atrial fibrillation in 2007 while recovering from surgery for a life-threatening infection. The biologic drug she was taking for rheumatoid arthritis suppressed her immune system, and an infection took hold. This happened not once, but twice.

“When doing my vital signs, they realized something was not quite right with my pulse and discovered I had atrial fibrillation,” Harvey-Collens says.

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