News | Cardiac Diagnostics | September 12, 2017

Shingles Increases Risk of Heart Attack, Stroke

Study says it is important patients with shingles are made aware of heart disease risk

September 12, 2017 — Contracting shingles, a reactivation of the chickenpox virus, increases a person’s risk of stroke and heart attack, according to a research letter published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 1 out of every 3 people in the United States will develop shingles in their lifetime. Anyone who has suffered from chickenpox may develop shingles; however, the risk of shingles increases as a person gets older.

Researchers in South Korea used the National Health Insurance Service’s “medical check-up” database to identify patients with newly diagnosed herpes zoster—or shingles, stroke and heart attack — using the relevant International Classification of Disease-10 (ICD-10) diagnostics codes.

A total of 519,880 patients were followed from 2003-2013, during this period there were 23,233 cases of shingles. The final cohort of 23,213 was matched with the same number of shingles-free patients to serve as control subjects.

Patients with shingles were more likely to be female and common risk factors for stroke and heart attack — such as old age, high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol — were also more commonly seen in these patients. However, this group was also less likely to smoke, have a lower alcohol intake, more exercise and be part of a higher socioeconomic class.

Shingles was found to raise the risk of a composite of cardiovascular events including heart attack and stroke by 41 percent, the risk of stroke by 35 percent and the risk of heart attack by 59 percent. The risk for stroke was highest in those under 40 years old, a relatively younger population with fewer risks for atherosclerosis. The risks of both stroke and heart attack were highest the first year after the onset of shingles and decreased with time. However, these risks were evenly distributed in the shingles-free group.

“While these findings require further study into the mechanism that causes shingles patients to have an increased risk of heart attack and stroke, it is important that physicians treating these patients make them aware of their increased risk,” said Sung-Han Kim, M.D., Ph.D., a physician in the department of infectious diseases at Asan Medical Center in Seoul and one of the study authors.

For more information: www.onlinejacc.org

Related Content

Surgery Could Reduce Frailty in Adults With Heart Failure
News | Heart Failure| November 17, 2017
November 17, 2017 — Common practice, and recently published research, shows that the risk of complications with surge
News | Antiplatelet and Anticoagulation Therapies| November 16, 2017
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and Pfizer Inc. released real-world data (RWD) of outcomes associated with direct oral...
SPRINT Trial Data Support New AHA/ACC Hypertension Guidelines
News | Hypertension| November 16, 2017
Findings from a landmark study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) support a key component of the new...
Videos | TCT| November 15, 2017
DAIC Editor Dave Fornell shows some of the innovations displayed on the expo floor at the 2017 Transcatheter Cardiova
Videos | FFR Technologies| November 15, 2017
A discussion with William Fearon, M.D.
Philips Azurion Image-Guided Therapy Platform Improves Clinical Workflow for Interventional Procedures
News | Angiography| November 15, 2017
Philips announced the results of a comprehensive, independent, two-year study demonstrating the clinical workflow...
Videos | Heart Valve Technology| November 15, 2017
Ted Feldman, M.D., MSCAI FACC FESC, director of the cardiac cath lab, Evanston Hospital, is the principal investigato
Videos | Left Atrial Appendage (LAA) Occluders| November 14, 2017
Vivek Reddy, M.D., director of cardiac arrhythmia services and professor of medicine, cardiology, Mount Sinai Hospita
Mexican Doctors Safely Reuse Donated Pacemakers After Sterilization
News | Pacemakers| November 10, 2017
Mexican doctors have safely reused donated pacemakers after sterilization, shows a study presented at the 30th Mexican...
GE Healthcare and Medis Collaborate to Expand Availability of Quantitative Flow Ratio Software
News | FFR Technologies| November 10, 2017
GE Healthcare and Dutch-based cardiovascular imaging software provider Medis announced at the 2017 Transcatheter...
Overlay Init