Natural Therapies for Atrial Fibrillation

One of the most common statements that I hear from patients is “I don’t want to take drugs, what are my alternatives?  Are there any ways to treat atrial fibrillation naturally?”  I do live in a state where there is a tremendous interest in natural therapies.  Numerous herbal and nonherbal supplement companies are based in Utah.  Also, there are many multi-level marketing companies that bring these therapies directly to your home.  In this environment, it is not uncommon for me to be asked these questions multiple times in a day.

Most of the time patients are nervous about asking questions about nontraditional approaches in medicine.  The nervous feelings often stem from fears of the physician not understanding or approving of alternative approaches or that these approaches may be in opposition to what the physician may want.  In my practice I want my patients to feel comfortable discussing any matter with me.  I want to learn about their use of herbal and nonherbal supplements.  If they have a new agent that has brought them benefit, I typically will research it to learn more about the substance and the potential health related benefits or risks.  In general the use of herbal and nonherbal supplements and alternative approaches to health care has increased dramatically, so it is important that patients and physicians discuss these therapies without any hesitation.

With regards to magnesium as a therapy, as your body levels of magnesium decline, the heart can become more irritable and develop extra beats or abnormal heart rhythms.  In a study of use of intravenous magnesium in patients with atrial fibrillation, the likelihood of magnesium being effective in treating the abnormal rhythm was 60% higher in comparison to patients that received a placebo agent alone.  We often use magnesium supplements in patients that are experiencing extra or skipped beats.

Note: Magnesium is safe unless you have kidney disease and does not build-up in the body, it is excreted through urine and sweat.

Medical Disclaimer:

The ideas, procedures and suggestions contained in this article are not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician. All matters regarding your physical health require medical supervision. Neither the author nor the publisher shall be liable or responsible for any loss, injury or damage allegedly arising from any information or suggestion in this article.

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