Gregory M Marcus, MD, MAS Professor of Medicine in Residence Endowed Professor in Atrial Fibrillation Research University of California, San Francisco Associate Chief of Cardiology for Research, UCSF Health University of California, San Francisco

Parental Smoking Linked to Atrial Fibrillation in Offspring

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Gregory M Marcus, MD, MAS Professor of Medicine in Residence Endowed Professor in Atrial Fibrillation Research University of California, San Francisco Associate Chief of Cardiology for Research, UCSF Health University of California, San Francisco

Dr. Marcus

Gregory M Marcus, MD, MAS
Professor of Medicine in Residence
Endowed Professor in Atrial Fibrillation Research
University of California, San Francisco
Associate Chief of Cardiology for Research, UCSF Health
University of California, San Francisco

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Smoking remains the most common preventable cause of death and disability. We previously found evidence that tobacco smoke exposure in the young may lead to atrial fibrillation, the most common heart rhythm disturbance, later in life.

Here we leveraged the multi-generational nature of the Framingham Heart Study to demonstrate that parental smoking was a risk factor for offspring atrial fibrillation. At least some of this relationship was explained by a greater propensity to smoke in offspring of smoking parents. These findings demonstrate a potentially new harmful effect of smoking pertinent to the most vulnerable population, our children. It also demonstrates how parental behaviors can have meaningful adverse consequences to their children decades later.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: These data provide yet more evidence that individuals should avoid or stop smoking, not only to benefit themselves but also those around them. These data also demonstrate how unhealthy behaviors can be translated into meaningful adverse effects in our children even decades later. These data also demonstrate that atrial fibrillation may be prevented with successful implantation of healthy lifestyle behaviors, and that parents may be especially important to instill those healthy habits in their kids.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: These results may open up a new perspective on the role that parents and early-life exposures play in the development of chronic diseases, even those that do not emerge until later in life. These results may also open up a new direction until understanding how the development of the heart, and perhaps the pulmonary veins, early in life may influence the risk of atrial fibrillation in middle age.

Citation:

Childhood Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Risk of Atrial Fibrillation in Adulthood
Christopher A. GrohEric VittinghoffEmelia J. BenjaminJosée Dupuis and Gregory M. Marcus

Journal of the American College of Cardiology
 
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Last Modified: Sep 23, 2019 @ 10:23 pm

 

  

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