sunset copyright American Heart Association

Spring Daylight Savings Time Linked to More AFib Admissions Interview with:
sunset copyright American Heart AssociationJay Chudow, M.D.

Montefiore Medical Center
Bronx, New York What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

  • Others found associations between daylight saving time transitions and sleep duration, sleep quality, workplace injuries and traffic accidents. Regarding cardiovascular health, studies in Europe and the United States have found an increased incidence of acute myocardial infarction and ischemic stroke in the days following daylight saving time transitions.
  • Our study found a significant increase in admissions for atrial fibrillation following the daylight saving time spring transition compared to the yearly average (average of 3.13 vs 2.56 admissions per day over the Monday to Thursday period). No significant difference was found following the autumn transition.
  • These findings add atrial fibrillation as a known condition associated with daylight saving time transitions. It adds to the knowledge base of negative health consequences of daylight saving time. What should readers take away from your report?

  • The biggest takeaway from our study is that stress associated with daylight saving time transitions may trigger an episode of atrial fibrillation. The findings require validation in a larger cohort and are difficult to translate to clinical practice at this time.
  • We recommend screening for A-Fib on a regular basis, not just when we change the clocks. Patients can get more information regarding their A-Fib risk at:
  • Living a healthy lifestyle is always our recommendation. A big risk factor for developing A-Fib is age which a person cannot change. But other risk factors like high blood pressure and diabetes can be controlled. A healthy diet, regular exercise and a good night’s sleep are always recommended. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

  • Our study was a small single center study that included people who were admitted at Montefiore Medical Center. Future multicenter studies will be needed to confirm our findings.
  • The exact link between atrial fibrillation and daylight saving time transitions is not clear. It may be similar to the association between A-Fib and sleep-breathing disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea. Further research is needed to explore these connections. Is there anything else you would like to add?

  • This research was conducted with Montefiore Medical Center’s ECG Research Group. Our group focuses on risk factors that lead to the development of atrial fibrillation
  • No disclosures to report. 

Citation: AHA abstract November 2018

 Increased Atrial Fibrillation Admissions Following Daylight Saving Time Spring Transition

Jay J Chudow, Lynn Zaremski, Alon Mazori, John D Fisher, Luigi Di Biase, Soo G Kim, Jorge Romero, Jay N Gross, Kevin J Ferrick, Andrew Krumerman, Montefiore Medical Ctr,
Bronx, NY

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Last Updated on November 11, 2018 by Marie Benz MD FAAD