Atrial fibrillation strongly predicts stroke in males
Atrial fibrillation appears to be the strongest determinant of stroke over 48 years of follow-up in males, a study has found.
The study followed 854 men from the age of 50 to 98 years. All participants underwent repeated medical examinations and completed lifestyle questionnaires.
Cox proportional hazards analysis revealed several determinants of ischaemic stroke, as follows: atrial fibrillation (hazard ratio [HR], 6.61; 95 percent CI, 4.47–9.77), mother dead from cardiovascular disease (HR, 1.53; 1.09–2.17), high education (HR, 0.81; 0.69–0.96) and increased physical activity level during leisure time (HR, 0.68; 0.50–0.93).
Meanwhile, haemorrhagic stroke risk was associated with heart rate (HR, 1.04; 1.01–1.06) and mother dead from stroke (HR, 3.56; 1.43–8.87).
Significant factors associated with all stroke included atrial fibrillation (HR, 5.34; 3.68–7.75), high diastolic blood pressure (HR, 1.02; 1.01–1.03), increased body weight (HR, 0.96; 0.94–0.99), high educational level (HR, 0.79; 0.68–0.92), wide waist circumference (HR, 1.04; 1.01–1.07), smoking (HR, 1.25; 1.06–1.48), mother dead from cerebrovascular disease (HR, 1.43; 1.05–1.94) and diabetes mellitus (HR, 1.65; 1.02–2.68).
Notably, stroke occurred in 88 percent of men diagnosed with atrial fibrillation.
The findings underscore a need for improved prophylaxis through intense treatment of modifiable determinants, researchers said.