Reducing New-Onset Atrial Fibrillation After Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery

Melanie J Coletta, Gail Lis, Patricia Clark, Reza Dabir, Farzad Daneshvar
AACN Advanced Critical Care 2019, 30 (3): 249-258
Postoperative atrial fibrillation is the most common dysrhythmia to occur after coronary artery bypass graft surgery. It develops in 10% to 40% of patients and can lead to complications such as hemodynamic instability, heart failure, and stroke. Risk factors include hypertension, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and obesity. Patients who experience postoperative atrial fibrillation often have longer hospital stays, are at higher risk for readmission, and have increased mortality. Protocols designed to reduce the incidence of the condition can decrease hospital costs, improve patient outcomes, and increase overall quality of care. This quality improvement project took place in a tertiary care center located in southeastern Michigan and focused on the development and implementation of an evidence-based postoperative atrial fibrillation prophylaxis protocol using amiodarone. The outcomes of this project suggest that amiodarone prophylaxis can reduce the incidence of postoperative atrial fibrillation in patients with no previous history of atrial fibrillation undergoing coronary artery bypass graft surgery.

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