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September is National Atrial (Afib) Awareness Month. Approximately 2.7 million Americans are living with Afib, and another 850,000 are estimated to have Afib, and remain undiagnosed. Atrial Fibrillation is the most common type of heart rhythm disorder, People who have Afib are at a higher risk for strokes. It can also lead to heart failure. However, identifying and treating this condition early, can help avoid these problems. Afib is an irregular heartbeat which can cause blood to collect in the heart and form a clot. These clots can travel to the brain, blocking small blood vessels and causing a stroke. There is a lack of awareness of symptoms associated with this condition. The primary symptoms of Afib is pounding, fluttering, racing sensations in the chest and heart palpitations. There are other symptoms that are less obvious as shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness or lightheadedness. If you or someone you know have been diagnosed with arrhythmia, contact The American Heart Association as a resource for information and support. Other resources include: and The Heart Rhythm Society.

Jamie Shapiro

Jamie Shapiro, founder of Companion Services of America, LLC received a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Chicago. Jamie started her career in psychiatric social work at Northwestern University Institute of Psychiatry. Later, she went on to become the Director of Social Services at Belmont Community Hospital where she developed discharge planning procedures to assist staff in identifying potential patients requiring intervention.