Atrial flutter can be caused by abnormalities or damage to the heart's structure. Some of the things that may trigger atrial flutter include hyperthyroidism, heart valve disease, heart attack, coronary artery disease and high blood pressure. Atrial flutter is defined as an abnormal beating of the heart, according to WebMD.
Atrial flutter and atrial fibrillation cause the same signs and symptoms. However, atrial flutter can be distinguished by a more organized rhythm when compared to atrial fibrillation, notes Mayo Clinic. Some of the risk factors associated with this condition include age, blood pressure, obesity, family history, alcohol consumption and certain chronic conditions.
Exposure to strong substances such as alcohol, medication, caffeine and tobacco may lead to atrial flutter. An overactive thyroid gland, sick sinus syndrome, heart defects, viral infections, previous heart surgery, sleep apnea, lung disease and stress are all possible causes of atrial flutter.
Individuals affected by atrial flutter may experience lightheadedness, fatigue and weakness. They are likely to develop chest pain, shortness of breath and confusion. Other symptoms that may be associated with the condition include a reduction in the ability to exercise, dizziness and palpitations. Electrical cardioversion and cardioversion by drugs are the two main techniques used to treat this condition.