Comparison of outcomes among moderate alcohol drinkers before acute myocardial infarction to effect of continued versus discontinuing alcohol intake after the infarct.
Light-to-moderate alcohol consumption has been previously associated with a lower risk of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and mortality. The association of changes in drinking behavior after an AMI with health status and long-term outcomes is unknown. Using a prospective cohort of patients with AMI evaluated with the World Health Organization's Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test, we investigated changes in drinking patterns in 325 patients who reported moderate drinking at the time of their AMI. One-year alcohol consumption, disease-specific (angina pectoris and quality of life) and general (mental and physical) health status and rehospitalization outcomes, and 3-year mortality were assessed. Seattle Angina Questionnaire Angina Frequency and Quality of Life, Short Form-12 Mental and Physical Component Summary Scales were modeled using multivariable hierarchical linear models within site. Of the initial 325 moderate drinkers at baseline, 273 (84%) remained drinking and 52 (16%) quit. In fully adjusted models, Physical Component Scale scores (beta 6.47, 95% confidence interval 3.73 to 9.21, p <0.01) were significantly higher during follow-up in those who remained drinking. Persistent moderate drinkers had a trend toward less angina (relative risk 0.65, 95% confidence interval 0.39 to 1.10, p = 0.11), fewer rehospitalizations (hazard ratio 0.79, 95% confidence interval 0.44 to 1.41, p = 0.42), lower 3-year mortality (relative risk 0.75, 95% confidence interval 0.23 to 2.51, p = 0.64), and better disease-specific quality of life (Seattle Angina Questionnaire Quality of Life, beta 3.88, 95% confidence interval -0.79 to 8.55, p = 0.10) and mental health (Mental Component Scale, beta 0.83, 95% confidence interval -1.62 to 3.27, p = 0.51) than quitters. In conclusion, these data suggest that there are no adverse effects for moderate drinkers to continue consuming alcohol and that they may have better physical functioning compared to those who quit drinking after an AMI.
Carter, MD; Lee, JH; Buchanan, DM; Peterson, ED; Tang, F; Reid, KJ; Spertus, JA; Valtos, J; O'Keefe, JH
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