Aims: Given the advances in atrial fibrillation (AF) management and the availability of new European Society of Cardiology (ESC) guidelines, there is a need for the systematic collection of contemporary data regarding the management and treatment of AF in ESC member countries.
Methods and results: We conducted a registry of consecutive in- and outpatients with AF presenting to cardiologists in nine participating ESC countries. All patients with an ECG-documented diagnosis of AF confirmed in the year prior to enrolment were eligible. We enroled a total of 3119 patients from February 2012 to March 2013, with full data on clinical subtype available for 3049 patients (40.4% female; mean age 68.8 years). Common comorbidities were hypertension, coronary disease, and heart failure. Lone AF was present in only 3.9% (122 patients). Asymptomatic AF was common, particularly among those with permanent AF. Amiodarone was the most common antiarrhythmic agent used (∼20%), while beta-blockers and digoxin were the most used rate control drugs. Oral anticoagulants (OACs) were used in 80% overall, most often vitamin K antagonists (71.6%), with novel OACs being used in 8.4%. Other antithrombotics (mostly antiplatelet therapy, especially aspirin) were still used in one-third of the patients, and no antithrombotic treatment in only 4.8%. Oral anticoagulants were used in 56.4% of CHA2DS2-VASc = 0, with 26.3% having no antithrombotic therapy. A high HAS-BLED score was not used to exclude OAC use, but there was a trend towards more aspirin use in the presence of a high HAS-BLED score.
Conclusion: The EURObservational Research Programme Atrial Fibrillation (EORP-AF) Pilot Registry has provided systematic collection of contemporary data regarding the management and treatment of AF by cardiologists in ESC member countries. Oral anticoagulant use has increased, but novel OAC use was still low. Compliance with the treatment guidelines for patients with the lowest and higher stroke risk scores remains suboptimal.
Keywords: Anticoagulation; Atrial fibrillation; Registry; Risk scores.