This information is provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD).
Familial atrial fibrillation is an inherited heart condition that disrupts the heart’s rhythm. It is characterized by erratic electrical activity in the heart’s upper chambers (the atria), causing an irregular response in the heart’s lower chambers (the ventricles). This causes a fast and irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia). Signs and symptoms may include dizziness, chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath, or fainting. Affected people also have an increased risk of stroke and sudden death. While complications may occur at any age, some affected people never have associated health problems. Familial atrial fibrillation may be caused by changes (mutations) in any of various genes, some of which have not been identified. It is most often inherited in an autosomal dominant manner, but autosomal recessive inheritance has been reported.
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