Navigation Links
High Levels of Stress After 9/11 Raised Heart Disease Risk
Date:1/7/2008

Cardiovascular problems surfaced in people with no history of heart trouble,,,,

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- People with no history of heart problems who felt extremely stressed following the 9/11 terrorist attacks were prone to heart problems in the three years following the attacks, researchers report.

While extreme stress can trigger an immediate lethal heart attack in some people, it can also gradually increase the risk for heart disease over time. And stressful events may remind people of earlier stressful situations, leaving them vulnerable to health problems such as heart disease, the researchers noted.

"The 9/11 attacks represent a formidable form of stress for many people because it's an assault on their country," said lead researcher E. Alison Holman, an assistant professor of nursing science at the University of California, Irvine. "It's the first time in decades that the United States has experienced that form of collective trauma. Probably the last time was after Pearl Harbor."

Holman's team found an increased incidence of cardiovascular ailments during the three years following Sept. 11, 2001. "Those aliments include high blood pressure, heart problems and stroke," she said.

The acute stress reactions were primarily post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and "disassociation," Holman said. But unlike findings in previous research, the new study found that the effect of these problems did not develop immediately after the attack, yet seemed to be enough to put people at risk for heart problems years later.

"People who experienced high levels of acute stress reaction following 9/11 had a much higher incidence of cardiovascular ailments over the three years following 9/11 than people who did not have the high acute stress reaction," Holman said.

For the study, Holman's team collected data on 2,729 adults from across the country, 2,592 of whom had completed an online health survey before the 9/11 attacks. After the attacks, the people took another online survey about their stress responses, such as anxiety, feelings of detachment from oneself or the world, or re-experiencing the event. They were later surveyed each year about their health for three years.

The researchers found that before the attacks, 21.5 percent of the people had been diagnosed with a heart problem. But three years after the attacks, 30.5 percent reported heart problems.

Those who had acute stress responses to the 9/11 attacks had a 53 percent increased incidence of heart problems over the ensuing three years. This association held true even after compensating for risk factors for heart disease, existing heart and mental health problems before 9/11, and degree of exposure to the attacks.

Also, people who had high levels of stress immediately after the attacks were about twice as likely to develop high blood pressure, and about three times as likely to develop heart problems during the following two years, the researchers found.

People who continued to worry about terrorism after 9/11 had an increased risk for heart problems two to three years after the attacks, Holman said.

The findings are published in the January issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

Holman said the findings may indicate the need to treat people who experience severe stress immediately after a similar attack, to prevent the development of both mental and physical problems.

"It's important that we think about not just mental health issues following a stressful event like this, but we have to consider ways that we can identify people who are at high risk for both physical and mental health disorders immediately after trauma," she said.

However, one expert thinks 9/11 was a unique event that produced a unique set of physical and mental problems, even for people not directly involved.

"This type of tragedy -- this type of assault on our country -- highlights the psychological national identity that this threat was a threat to all," said Samuel F. Sears, a professor of psychology and director of health psychology at East Carolina University.

"This is continued evidence of the powerful role of experiences on both physical and mental health interrelationships," Sears said. "But there were unique characteristics about this threat that have increased cardiovascular events."

Those characteristics include the number of people killed on 9/11, the unpredictability of the attacks, and the ongoing threat of terrorism, Sears said. "It's like a natural disaster that could occur every day without warning," he said.

More information

For more information on post-traumatic stress disorder, visit the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health.



SOURCES: E. Alison Holman, F.N.P., Ph.D., assistant professor, nursing science, University of California, Irvine; Samuel F. Sears, Ph.D., professor, psychology, and director, health psychology program, East Carolina University, Greenville, N.C.; January 2008 Archives of General Psychiatry


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Adult offspring of parents with PTSD have lower cortisol levels
2. Study Demonstrates Marteks Algal DHA Oil Improves Blood Triglyceride Lipid Levels
3. Screening Proposed for Childhood Cholesterol Levels
4. Womens Folic Acid Levels Improving
5. Giving emergency nurses aromatherapy massages with music dramatically reduced stress levels
6. Giving emergency nurses aromatherapy massages with music dramatically reduced stress levels
7. School, family and community involvement are all needed to increase the activity levels of adolescen
8. High HDL Levels Protect Heart Health
9. Meta-Analysis of Blood Phe Levels and Clinical Outcomes in PKU Published
10. Data Show Vaprisol(R) Is Effective & Safe in Promptly Increasing Serum Sodium Levels in Patients With Euvolemic or Hypervolemic Hyponatremia
11. Impact of elevated homocysteine levels on vision under study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
High Levels of Stress After 9/11 Raised Heart Disease Risk
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... ... TherapySites, the leading website and online marketing ... Association. This new relationship allows TherapySites to continue to extend their online ... and promotional offers. , "TCA is extremely excited about this new partnership, as ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their highest five-star rating to ... of individuals in the United States and Canada wear eyeglasses. Once considered to be ... vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities use glasses as a way of ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... ... Pixel Film Studios Released ProSlice Levels, a Media Slicing Effect Plugin ... whole new perspective by using the title layers in ProSlice Levels to split-up ... Levels contains over 30 Different presets to choose from. FCPX users can ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women are ... with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms ... can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, ... aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and ... necessary one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Roche (SIX: ... 510(k) clearance for its Elecsys BRAHMS PCT (procalcitonin) assay ... sepsis or septic shock. With this clearance, Roche is ... a fully integrated solution for sepsis risk assessment and ... with bacterial infection and PCT levels in blood can ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Bracket , ... launch its next generation clinical outcomes platform, Bracket eCOA (SM) ... held on June 26 – 30, 2016 in ... first electronic Clinical Outcome Assessment product of its kind to ... #715. Bracket eCOA 6.0 is a flexible platform ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... LONDON , June 23, 2016 ... environments  Oticon , industry leaders in ... the launch of Oticon Opn ™, the world,s ... world of possibilities for IoT devices.      ... Opn, Oticon introduces a number of ,world firsts,: ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: