AFib Facts & Fiction

Test your knowledge and understand what is fact and what is fiction when it comes to AFib.

Fiction. While there is some support for the belief that high-intensity exercise increases the risk of having an AFib episode, there is no evidence to support people with AFib stopping all physical activity. In some studies, physical activity actually reduced the risk of having an AFib episode. A moderate physical exercise routine—even if it’s just walking—can have many benefits for your heart health and overall well-being. Read more about staying active with AFib.

Fiction. Aspirin is an antiplatelet blood thinner, but the American Heart Association does not recommend it as a primary option for the prevention of stroke due to AFib. Only certain people with nonvalvular AFib and a lower risk (CHA2DS2–VASc score of 1) should consider managing their stroke risk with aspirin. It’s also important to remember that the CHA2DS2–VASc score, which is a measurement of your stroke risk, can change over time. Your score may be low now, but if you have a score of 2 or higher, you may want to talk to your healthcare professional about managing your stroke risk with a blood thinner like XARELTO®.

Learn more about the CHA2DS2–VASc score and use our risk calculator to help start a discussion with your healthcare professional about your options for reducing your risk of stroke.

Fact. AFib-related stroke occurs when a blood clot in the heart moves to the brain, blocking blood flow and oxygen. People with AFib are 5 times more likely to have a stroke than people who do not have AFib. That’s why it is so important to help keep yourself protected by taking a blood thinner like XARELTO®. Learn more about AFib and stroke.

Fact. You should never stop taking any medication prescribed by your healthcare professional unless he or she tells you to stop. Many people with AFib do not feel symptoms at all, but that doesn’t mean the risk of having a stroke goes away. In fact, your risk of having a stroke goes up if you suddenly stop taking a blood thinner.

Fiction. AFib by itself is not usually fatal, but complications of AFib, like stroke, can be life-threatening or severely disabling. The good news is you can help protect yourself from the risk of stroke by taking a blood thinner. Learn more about blood thinners for AFib.