If you’ve have Covid could that have triggered a heart arrhythmia? Elizabeth Tracey reports


Heart arrhythmias, where the heart doesn’t beat in its normal pattern, are common, especially one called atrial fibrillation, where the top part of the heart flutters, increasing someone’s risk for stroke and other issues. Could this condition, abbreviated afib, develop after Covid infection? Hugh Calkins, a cardiologist and electrophysiologist at Johns Hopkins, says most definitely.

Calkins: I think it’s crystal clear that Covid can trigger afib. Anything that causes stress, poor sleep, can trigger afib. High fever can trigger afib. So I think Covid triggers a lot of afib. I personally think that vaccination helps prevent afib. I know for sure that Covid can trigger afib, so it’s best to avoid getting Covid by getting vaccinated. Generally once the Covid is resolved the trigger is going to melt away and so I think it will tend to resolve on its own.  :28

Calkins says ongoing research is looking at a range of abnormalities that may follow Covid infection, including heart problems. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.