05 Feb Women Suffer More Heart Attacks at Night Than Men
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Sumeet S. Chugh MD
Price Professor and Associate Director, Smidt Heart Institute
Medical Director, Heart Rhythm Center
Director, Center for Cardiac Arrest Prevention
Director, Division of Artificial Intelligence in Medicine, Dept of Medicine
Cedars-Sinai, Los Angeles
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: For a variety of reasons, sudden cardiac arrest during nighttime hours is the most perplexing and challenging form of this problem and needs to be investigated in detail. Patients are in a resting state, with decreased metabolism, heart rate, blood pressure, and in the absence of daytime triggers, presumably at the lowest likelihood of dying suddenly. The event can often go unrecognized, even by others sleeping in close proximity.
Finally, survival from cardiac arrest at night is significantly lower compared to the daytime. There are no community-based studies out there. Small studies of rare heart disease conditions report that men are more likely to suffer this affliction but the reality is that there were not enough women in those studies to do justice to sex-specific analyses.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
- 25.4% of female patients suffered cardiac arrest at night versus 20.6% of their male counterparts,
- The prevalence of lung disease was significantly higher at night compared with daytime cases and;
- Brain-affecting medications such as sedatives, antidepressants and painkillers, were also found to have a significantly greater usage in nighttime compared to daytime cardiac arrest
- Women were more likely to be prescribed brain-affecting medications
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: If you are at increased risk of cardiac arrest due to heart conditions, then being female, having lung disease and being prescribed brain-affecting medications will increase your risk of nighttime sudden death. Health care providers should exercise caution in prescribing such medications, especially in high-risk women.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?
Response: Future research should focus on a deeper understanding of the biologic mechanisms behind nighttime sudden death. These findings provide a foundation on which the research could be built.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: Sudden cardiac arrest is a major public health problem that affects at least 350,000 Americans a year, approximately 1000 Americans a day. By the time the 911 call is made, 90% of these individuals are destined not to survive despite full efforts to resuscitate them. This represents the highest mortality from any human disease condition and death occurs within minutes. At the Cedars-Sinai Center for Cardiac arrest prevention our mission is to discover and implement novel clinical tools for prediction and prevention of sudden cardiac arrest, thereby reducing the burden of sudden cardiac death in the community.
This research was funded by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health.
Sudden Cardiac Death During Nighttime Hours
Ramireddy, Archana et al.
Heart Rhythm, Volume 0, Issue 0
Published:January 19, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hrthm.2020.12.035
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