Colchicine for prevention of postoperative AF

Postoperative AF (atrial fibrillation) is a common and important complication of cardiac surgery which increases the length of hospital stay and morbidity. Pericarditis may be a contributory factor in the genesis of postoperative AF, though other factors are also involved. Hence colchicine, an anti inflammatory drug which has been shown to be safe and effective in prevention of post operative pericarditis and post pericardiotomy syndrome was studied for its potential role in preventing post operative AF [Imazio M et al. Colchicine Reduces Postoperative Atrial Fibrillation Results of the Colchicine for the Prevention of the Postpericardiotomy Syndrome (COPPS) Atrial Fibrillation Substudy. Circulation. 2011 Nov 22;124(21):2290-5]. The study involved three hundred and thirty six patients and was a multi centric double blind randomized trial. They noted a reduced incidence of post operative AF in the colchicine group (12.0% versus 22.0%;P=0.021), with a reduced hospital stay.

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