A new study reports that blood levels of a protein hormone called N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) predicts new atrial fibrillation, regardless of other afib risk factors. Those with the highest levels were four times as likely to develop afib as those with the lowest levels. In the study, elevated levels of NT-proBNP occurred as much as 16 years before the onset of atrial fibrillation. Tests for NT-proBNP are available today, but are mainly used for screening for heart failure and heart disease.
To learn more, read: Study Finds Major Predictor for Development of New Atrial Fibrillation (AF)