AHA: Insomnia Linked to Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke

Association independent of established cardiovascular risk factors, age, gender, comorbidities

MONDAY, Nov. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Insomnia is associated with a greater risk of heart attack and stroke independent of established cardiovascular risk factors, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2012, held from Nov. 3 to 7 in Los Angeles.

Chien-Yi Hsu, M.D., from the Taipei Veterans General Hospital in Taiwan, and colleagues compared the frequency of cardiovascular events among 43,180 adults 45 years and older, where 10,871 had been diagnosed with insomnia and 32,309 matched adults did not have insomnia.

Over a mean of 4.4 years of follow-up, the researchers found that there were 424 acute myocardial infarction (AMI) events and 3,307 ischemic stroke events. The insomnia group had a significantly higher incidence of AMI (1.63 versus 0.76 percent) and stroke (11.18 versus 6.47 percent). After adjustment for age, gender, and comorbidities, insomnia was independently associated with a greater risk of AMI (hazard ratio [HR], 2.30), stroke (HR, 1.99), and composite events (HR, 2.04). The association between insomnia and cardiovascular disease was independent of established cardiovascular risk factors.

"Insomnia was associated with an increased risk of future cardiovascular events," Hsu and colleagues conclude.

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