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A new approach to weight loss and risk factor management in patients with atrial fibrillation

Dr Christopher Wong, Institution: University of Adelaide

2018 Postdoctoral Fellowship

Years funded: 2019-2020


Atrial fibrillation is the most common heart rhythm disorder that affects Australians. It can result in stroke, heart failure and death, and is responsible for more hospital admissions in Australia than heart attacks or heart failure. We now understand that more than half of all cases of atrial fibrillation are due to suboptimal control of common cardiovascular risk factors.

Excessive weight, elevated blood pressure, and diabetes are amongst the most important risk factors for this common heart rhythm disorder. However, many patients cannot control these risk factors adequately with diet, lifestyle changes and standard medications. Therefore, new approaches to weight loss and risk factor management are needed to better prevent and manage atrial fibrillation.

This study will characterise the effect of a new drug that treats all three of these risk factors simultaneously. We aim to see whether this new drug improves symptoms and outcomes in patients with atrial fibrillation. If shown to be successful, this new drug and approach to treating this common heart rhythm disorder would be beneficial to millions of patients worldwide.

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