Health.  To live long, it is better to live with the elect of his heart

Health. To live long, it is better to live with the elect of his heart


In 2017, a University of Atlanta study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association found a statistical link between a person’s marital status and his or her risk of death.

In this case, the study, which looked at more than 6,000 patients, showed a 52% increased risk of dying from cardiac arrest in single, divorced, separated, widowed or unmarried people compared to married people…

In practice, patients were followed for 3.7 years, and over that period, more than 1,000 deaths were reported. In detail, regarding the risk of death from cardiac arrest, the study showed that it was increased by 40% for people who had never been married; 41% for divorced or separated people; and 71% for widows. “I was a little surprised by the extent of the influence of marriage on heart patients,” the study’s lead author said in a statement from the University of Atlanta.

These data coincide with a 2007 French INSEE study. In part to explain this result, the Atlanta researcher highlighted the social support provided by marriage, and having a partner to “ take care of yourself.

Lack of confidence to manage the disease

Five years later, this criterion of caregiver is also at the heart of a new study, presented at the congress of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) in Madrid. “Social support helps people cope with long-term conditions,” said study author Dr. Fabian Kerwagen of the University Hospital’s Heart Failure Center in an ESC statement. Würzburg, Germany.

“Spouses can help maintain treatment, encourage and help develop healthier behaviors, which could affect longevity. In this study, unmarried patients had fewer social interactions than married patients and lacked the confidence to manage their heart failure. We are looking at whether these factors could explain the survival rate of these patients. »

This time, the study presented included 1,008 patients hospitalized between 2004 and 2007 for heart failure; 633 (63%) were married and 375 (37%) were single, 195 widowed, 96 never married, and 84 separated or divorced. Initially, quality of life, social limitations (1), and self-efficacy (2) were measured using a questionnaire specifically designed for patients with heart failure. Depressed mood was also assessed using a standard patient health questionnaire.

“We don’t see any difference between the two populations when it comes to overall quality of life or depressed mood,” said Fabian Kerwagen. In contrast, the unmarried group performed less well in terms of social limitations and self-efficacy than the married group. »

Adjust the dosage to the degree of celibacy

During follow-up, 679 (67%) patients died, and being single rather than married was associated with a higher risk of death, all causes combined. As in the 2017 study, widowed patients had the highest risk of mortality, with an increased risk of 1.7 for all-cause deaths and 2.22 for those related to cardiovascular disease, compared to to the married group.

“The link between marriage and longevity indicates the importance of social support for patients with heart failure.” A link that has really been demonstrated with the establishment of social distances during the pandemic. Healthcare professionals should consider asking patients about their marital status and, more broadly, their social group in order to recommend the support of support groups in order to fill potential gaps, ”continues Fabian Kerwagen. A track for many patients around the world and in France?

In 2017, the authors even went so far as to suggest that it might be important to consider a patient’s marital status in the treatment of their coronary heart disease! It would be a matter of adjusting the dosage to the degree of celibacy… A criterion that is not currently included in prescriptions or care!

Cardiovascular diseases in France and around the world

These diseases are a set of disorders that affect the heart and blood vessels. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), this is the leading cause of death in the world, and by 2030, nearly 23.6 million people will die from cardiovascular disease ( heart disease or stroke, mainly).

The main risk factors for these conditions are poor diet, lack of physical activity, smoking and harmful alcohol use. The WHO states that these behavioral risk factors are responsible for about 80% of coronary heart disease and stroke.

In France, according to the French Federation of Cardiology, these diseases are the leading cause of death in women and those over 65, and the second in men. They cause 31% of deaths, an increase of about 140,000 a year, or 400 deaths a day.

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