Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Respiratory infections linked to increased risk of heart attacks and strokes

06.12.2007
A new study, which appears today in the online edition of the European Heart Journal, has found strong evidence that recent respiratory infections increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes, both of which are more common in the winter.

It has for some years been recognised, using information from death certificates, that there is an excess of deaths from coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke during the winter months, over and above those directly attributable to deaths from respiratory disease. More direct evidence has been necessary.

The authors of this study applied to the British Heart Foundation for funding to enable them to undertake further research to confirm or refute the findings of previous studies based on information from general practice which showed that respiratory infections were a strong risk factor for stroke.

The group, led by Tim Clayton and Tom Meade of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine’s Medical Statistics Unit, carried out a clinical case-control study in a general practice database, the IMS Disease Analyzer Mediplus database (IMS), which is used widely in epidemiological research. It contains details of some two million patients registered with approximately 500 GPs.

They found a doubling of risk of both heart attack and stroke in the week following respiratory infection, which reduced over time so that there was little excess risk beyond one month. Risk did not depend on age or gender and for heart attack was seen at every level of preceding risk, whether this had been low or high. There was also some evidence of an association between recent urinary tract infection and subsequent heart attack or stroke.

The researchers say that the benefit of reducing respiratory infection, either through ensuring high immunisation rates or by treating and preventing infection, may be substantial.

Tim Clayton comments: ‘These data add to the growing body of evidence linking respiratory infection with subsequent risk of cardiovascular events. However the absolute risk of such an event to an individual with respiratory infection remains low’.

Dr. Mike Knapton, Director of Prevention and Care at the British Heart Foundation, which funded the study, says: ‘We recommend that anyone with heart disease has the flu jab. Influenza is a serious infection, particularly in patients with heart disease such as heart failure, and it could even trigger a heart attack.

‘’Flu is a potential killer and heart patients are offered the flu jab for free, no matter what their age. We strongly recommend they take up the offer to give themselves protection against the flu’.

Ends.

To interview the authors, or to be sent a full copy of the paper, please contact the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Press Office on 020 7927 2802/2073 or contact gemma.howe@lshtm.ac.uk

Recent respiratory infection and risk of cardiovascular disease: case-control study through a General Practice Database. Tim C Clayton, MSc, Medical Statistics Unit, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Mary Thompson, PhD, IMS Health UK, Tom W Meade, DM FRS, Non-communicable Disease Epidemiology Unit, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Gemma Howe | alfa
Further information:
http://www.lshtm.ac.uk

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Do microplastics harbour additional risks by colonization with harmful bacteria?
05.04.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung Warnemünde

nachricht Rutgers-led innovation could spur faster, cheaper, nano-based manufacturing
14.02.2018 | Rutgers University

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Spider silk key to new bone-fixing composite

University of Connecticut researchers have created a biodegradable composite made of silk fibers that can be used to repair broken load-bearing bones without the complications sometimes presented by other materials.

Repairing major load-bearing bones such as those in the leg can be a long and uncomfortable process.

Im Focus: Writing and deleting magnets with lasers

Study published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces is the outcome of an international effort that included teams from Dresden and Berlin in Germany, and the US.

Scientists at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) together with colleagues from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and the University of Virginia...

Im Focus: Gamma-ray flashes from plasma filaments

Novel highly efficient and brilliant gamma-ray source: Based on model calculations, physicists of the Max PIanck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg propose a novel method for an efficient high-brilliance gamma-ray source. A giant collimated gamma-ray pulse is generated from the interaction of a dense ultra-relativistic electron beam with a thin solid conductor. Energetic gamma-rays are copiously produced as the electron beam splits into filaments while propagating across the conductor. The resulting gamma-ray energy and flux enable novel experiments in nuclear and fundamental physics.

The typical wavelength of light interacting with an object of the microcosm scales with the size of this object. For atoms, this ranges from visible light to...

Im Focus: Basel researchers succeed in cultivating cartilage from stem cells

Stable joint cartilage can be produced from adult stem cells originating from bone marrow. This is made possible by inducing specific molecular processes occurring during embryonic cartilage formation, as researchers from the University and University Hospital of Basel report in the scientific journal PNAS.

Certain mesenchymal stem/stromal cells from the bone marrow of adults are considered extremely promising for skeletal tissue regeneration. These adult stem...

Im Focus: Like a wedge in a hinge

Researchers lay groundwork to tailor drugs for new targets in cancer therapy

In the fight against cancer, scientists are developing new drugs to hit tumor cells at so far unused weak points. Such a “sore spot” is the protein complex...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

IWOLIA: A conference bringing together German Industrie 4.0 and French Industrie du Futur

09.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Magnetic nano-imaging on a table top

20.04.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Start of work for the world's largest electric truck

20.04.2018 | Interdisciplinary Research

Atoms may hum a tune from grand cosmic symphony

20.04.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>