Navigation Links
Sibling's Death May Boost Your Own Risk of Dying From Heart Attack: Study

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- When a brother or sister dies -- especially from a heart attack -- the risk of a surviving sibling also dying from a heart attack increases sharply in the following years, a large new study from Sweden suggests.

Chronic stress or lifestyle choices like drinking, smoking, unhealthy diet and lack of exercise may follow the loss of a sibling, increasing the risk of a heart attack over time, the researchers said.

"Health care providers should follow bereaved siblings to help recognize signs of acute or chronic psychosocial stress mechanisms that could lead to heart attack," said lead researcher Mikael Rostila, an associate professor at Stockholm University and the Karolinska Institute.

"We might be able to prevent heart attacks and other heart-related conditions by treating these siblings early on and recommending stress management," he added.

Reasons for the association between a sibling's death and the death of a brother or sister years later aren't clear, Rostila noted. And although the study showed an association between a sibling's heart attack death and heightened death risk, it did not establish a cause-and-effect relationship.

"More detailed information from medical records, shared childhood social environment and family characteristics, and data on personal and relational characteristics is needed to uncover the mechanisms causing the association between sibling death and heart attack," Rostila said.

The report was published in the Feb. 27 issue of the Journal of the American Heart Association.

To see the effect of a sibling's death on their other siblings, Rostila's team collected data on more than 1.6 million people in Sweden, aged 40 to 69.

They found the risk of dying from a heart attack increased 25 percent among surviving sisters and 15 percent among surviving brothers compared to people who had not lost a sibling. If their brother or sister died of a heart attack, risk of also dying from a heart attack in the following years increased by 62 percent among women and 98 percent among men, Rostila's team found.

Death from a heart attack was not likely to happen immediately after siblings died, the researchers said. Rather, the risk rose in the four to six years after a sibling's death among women and in the two to six years afterward among men, they found.

"This is a red flag for families," said Dr. Stephen Green, associate chairman of the department of cardiology at North Shore University Hospital, in Manhasset, N.Y. "We know that heart disease is genetic and environmental and typically siblings and family members share the same gene pool, but also share the same bad habits."

Many siblings whose brother or sister died from a heart attack have undiagnosed heart disease, Green said.

If you -- or someone you know -- has a family member with a history of heart disease or heart attack, or a family member who died from heart disease, it is important to talk with your primary care doctor or a cardiologist to make sure it doesn't happen to you, Green said.

More information

To learn more about heart attacks, visit the American Heart Association.

SOURCES: Mikael Rostila, Ph.D., associate professor, Stockholm University/Karolinska Institute, Sweden; Stephen Green, M.D., associate chairman, department of cardiology, North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, N.Y.; Feb. 27, 2013, Journal of the American Heart Association

Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Developmental Woes Common in Siblings of Children With Autism
2. Study of half siblings provides genetic clues to autism
3. Mothers Drinking Increases Risk of Infants Death: Study
4. Screening could avert 12,000 lung cancer deaths each year in the United States
5. Dialysis Catheters Tied to Higher Risk for Infection, Death, Study Finds
6. Smog May Boost Death Risk for Heart Attack Survivors
7. Youth Smoking, Obesity May Lead to Early Death
8. Study finds possible link between diabetes and increased risk of heart attack death
9. Alcohol Blamed for 1 in Every 30 Cancer Deaths: Study
10. Indian plant could play key role in death of cancer cells
11. Calcium Supplements May Raise Odds of Heart Death in Women
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Sibling's Death May Boost Your Own Risk of Dying From Heart Attack: Study
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... 01, 2015 , ... Lutronic, a leading innovator of aesthetic and medical laser ... devices for sale in the United States. Clarity is a Superior Dual Wavelength ... lasers, into a single platform that is easy to own and operate. , ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... With FCPX Overlay: Grit , users can ... customization, the possibilities are truly endless, all with a click of a mouse. Each ... flip, horizontal flip, depth of field and more, all within Final Cut Pro X. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 2015 , ... Third Molar SEO , one of ... launched a sleek, mobile-ready and user-centric redesigned website. , Vivek Srivastava, founder and ... the benefits that its SEO services provide to dentists and why Third Molar ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... The ... 2015-2016 inductee into its VIP Woman of the Year Circle. She is recognized with ... leading networking organization exclusively for professional women, boasting more than 850,000 members and over ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... , ... Until now, the St. Louis Fetal Care Institute used ... Study) trial. One of these exclusion criteria was a BMI above 34.9. According to ... is considered normal, 25 - 29.9 is overweight and above 30 is obese. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... Texas , Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ...  announced today that top-line data from its ... telotristat etiprate in treating carcinoid syndrome in ... with the clinical benefit observed in its ... designed as a companion to TELESTAR primarily ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... Colo. , Dec. 1, 2015 Ampio ... New York Stock Exchange has established January 5, 2016 as ... its stockholders of the shares of Common Stock of ... (1) share of Aytu common stock for every five ... the record date, December 1, 2015. The distribution date will ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... PUNE, India , December 1, 2015 ... defines and segments the concerned market with analysis and ... orthobiologics report defines and segments the concerned ... According to the Market Research Report "North American ... Bone Growth Factors & Spinal Stimulation, Stem Cell Therapy, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: