Evidence of atrial fibrillation (AF) is often sought in patients with ischemic stroke or
transient ischemic attack (TIA), and confers a high risk of recurrent stroke. Guidelines for
detection of AF following stroke vary. Therefore, we aimed to determine the frequency of
newly detected AF by ambulatory cardiac monitoring through a systematic review and metaanalysis
of the literature. We found a higher rate of AF detection by three modes of
ambulatory cardiac monitoring – mobile cardiac outpatient telemetry, external loop
reordering, and internal loop recording – when compared with rates of newly detected AF in
inpatient bedside monitoring techniques. We suggest a systematic approach that can be
applied clinically to increase rates of AF detection, thus allowing for increased secondary
stroke prevention through the use of anticoagulants.
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