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Risk of stroke and transient ischaemic attack in patients with a diagnosis of resolved atrial fibrillation: retrospective cohort studies

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k1717 (Published 09 May 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k1717

Opinion: The importance of asking the right research question

Re: Risk of stroke and transient ischaemic attack in patients with a diagnosis of resolved atrial fibrillation: retrospective cohort studies

The coding of AF resolved has been raised by several of the correspondents. In the past this often was entered following an annul review of af people who were not on warfarin as part of the process of good care coupled with uk payment systms for GPs. Those on warfarin were not normally reviewed.

There are potentials for bias here, and, though there would need to be an ecg showing sinus rythm (I assume), there would not usually be any longer rhythm monitoring to make this diagnostic entry. As so much af is paroxysmal and as we discover more and more people with pat time af from pacemaker reports, the clear path to help people decide on whether to take an anticoagulant or not gets ever more confusing.

Competing interests: post ablation i think my af has resolved.UK GP

31 May 2018
nicholas j sharvill
gp
deal kent