A new way of identifying a common condition that causes the heart to beat irregularly may have been discovered by artificial intelligence.

Atrial fibrillation affects one million people in the UK and increases the risk of stroke and long-term heart problems.

It is relatively simple to diagnose when the heart is beating irregularly, but not when it returns to normal.

Computer modelling at the Mayo Clinic in the US may have identified signs that indicate previous abnormalities.

Researchers said it was still early days, but believe the system could lead to earlier and easier detection of the problem and, therefore, ensure patients get the right treatment, saving lives.

The findings are published in The Lancet.

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