The relationship between hypothyroidism and atrial fibrillation (AFib) is complex and not fully understood. Some studies suggest an association, while others propose a potential protective effect.
Thyroid hormones can have a significant impact on the function of your heart and vascular system.
Thyroid disease, particularly hyperthyroidism, is a known risk factor for atrial fibrillation (AFib), an irregular and often rapid heart rate that can increase the risk of stroke and heart failure.
However, it’s less clear how hypothyroidism — a thyroid condition involving insufficient hormone production — affects AFib.
Although hypothyroidism can trigger other cardiovascular risk factors associated with AFib, a direct connection between hypothyroidism and AFib remains less clear.
AFib can be associated with hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, although a relationship with hyperthyroidism is more commonly recognized.
For example, in a
However, in the broader context, hypothyroidism is more prevalent than hyperthyroidism. For example, in women, these conditions occur at rates of
Thyroid disease is a known risk factor for AFib.
In particular, the link between AFib and hyperthyroidism is
However, the association between AFib and hypothyroidism has been less studied, and available research results are mixed. Some studies even suggest that hypothyroidism may have a protective effect against AFib.
For instance, a large registry
In contrast, a
Further research is needed to better clarify this association.
What TSH level can cause AFib?
The relationship between thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels and the risk of AFib is complex. It is not as straightforward as a specific TSH level causing AFib.
However, this study does not state a specific TSH level that directly causes AFib. It indicates that even levels within the typical range might affect AFib risk.
Hypothyroidism is associated with several cardiovascular risk factors that can indirectly contribute to an increased risk of AFib:
These factors may collectively contribute to a potential indirect link between hypothyroidism and AFib.
AFib treatment in people with hypothyroidism typically involves addressing both conditions.
AFib can be managed in
The rate- and rhythm-control strategies refer to the types of medications prescribed, with rate-control focusing on managing the pace of the heart and rhythm-control focusing on the consistency of the heartbeat.
It’s important to note that levothyroxine, the medication commonly used for hypothyroidism, can occasionally worsen AFib. While levothyroxine effectively corrects thyroid hormone levels in people with hypothyroidism, caution is advised to avoid excessive dosing to prevent AFib from worsening.
For instance, one
Thyroid disease is a known risk factor for AFib, but the direct link between hypothyroidism and AFib is less clear. While hypothyroidism can affect the heart and thus have an indirect effect on AFib, some studies suggest that hypothyroidism might be associated with a lower risk of AFib or even have a protective effect.
Overall, the connection between hypothyroidism and AFib is complex and may be influenced by various factors, including the severity of thyroid dysfunction, your overall health, and other cardiovascular risk factors.