Premature ventricular contraction (PVC) and atrial fibrillation (AF) are common arrhythmias affecting 1–2% of the general population. During PVC, retrograde ventriculo-atrial activation can occur and act like an atrial ectopy. However, the clinical significance of this phenomenon is not fully understood. We aimed to elucidate whether the clinical diagnosis of PVC can increase the risk of new-onset AF. We performed a nationwide population-based analysis using the Korean National Health Insurance Service database. A total of 9,537,713 people without prior history of PVC and AF were identified. Among these people, 4135 developed PVC in 2009, and people with and without PVC were followed until 2018. People who had PVC showed an increased risk of new-onset AF as compared with people without PVC (hazard ratio [HR] = 2.705; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.428–3.013; p < 0.001). The risk of ischemic stroke was also significantly increased in people with PVC (HR 1.160; 95% CI 1.048–1.284; p = 0.0041). New-onset AF developed in 72 people (19.3%) among 374 people with PVC who had ischemic stroke during their follow-up. A significant interaction was observed between PVC and age with people < 65 years at greater risk of new-onset AF for having PVC. In this observational analysis, the risk of new-onset AF and ischemic stroke was increased in people with PVC. Additional evaluation to identify AF in people with PVC can be helpful.
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