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September 14, 2022


AF Awareness Week

Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Week

An estimated half a million Australians have Atrial Fibrillation (AF), the most common irregular heartbeat, and prevalence is expected to double in the next decade.

Many people living with AF don’t experience symptoms, which means you could be living with an underlying heart condition and not know it.

Concerningly, up to 30% of those affected by the disorder remain undiagnosed, which is why awareness is so important.

This year hearts4heart is launching its 9th Annual Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Week (Sept 19 – 25).


Atrial Fibrillation (AF) Awareness Week aims to:

(1.) Raise awareness about AF prevalence in Australia,
(2.) educate people about the symptoms and risk factors of AF, particularly those aged 65 years and older, caregivers and healthcare professionals, and
(3.) encourage people at risk of AF or experiencing symptoms to speak with their GP about getting their heart checked and learn ways to manage their heart health.

AF is a heart condition in which the top chambers of your heart (the atria) beat fast and erratically. In AF, your heart may not pump blood around the body as well as it should.

If left untreated, AF can lead to serious health complications, such as stroke, heart failure and dementia. AF is associated with a 3-fold increase in the risk of heart failure and a up to a 7-fold higher risk of a life-threatening stroke.


Are you at risk?

AF affects men and women and can occur at any age. However, the risk of having AF increases as you get older.

One-in-twenty Australians aged 55 and over live with AF.

Risk factors include:

  • Physical inactivity
  • Being overweight
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Having diabetes
  • Smoking
  • High blood cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Age over 65 years


What can you do?

Recognising AF symptoms is key to early diagnosis, stroke prevention, effective management of the condition, and the best health outcomes.

Symptoms can include any of the following:

  • Dizziness
  • Palpitations
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fainting
  • Ankle swelling
  • Chest pain


If you’re over 65, or experiencing any of the above, don’t put your heart health on hold.

Speak to your GP and get your heart checked.

Discovering an irregular heartbeat could save your life.

Click here to download our Heart Arrythmia Symptom tracker
Click here to download our Atrial Fibrillation Explained Booklet
Click here to download our checklist Managing Atrial Fibrillation
Click here to download our Change the Beat Whitepaper
Click here to download our Atrial Fibrillation awareness poster

We always appreciate people helping us spread the word. If you would like to get involved in Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Week, please email [email protected] for more information and shareable social media assets.


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