Subarachnoid Hemorrhage is a Preventable Disease with a Heritable Component
Background: Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) affects ≥ 16,000 Americans annually and ≥ 40% die within the first 30 days. Prevention of SAH is therefore of paramount importance. We present a preliminary analysis of risk factors for SAH from our case-control, population-based study. Methods: Cases were prospectively collected and matched to 2 age-, race-, and gender-matched controls. Risk factor history, family history, neuroimaging data, and genetic samples were obtained. Multivariable analysis was performed using logistic regression. Results: Between 6/97 and 2/00, 107 cases and 197 controls were enrolled in this study. By univariate analysis: hypertension, family history of SAH or intracranial aneurysm (IA), smoking (current or ever), alcohol use, low education level, low body mass index (BMI), and low estrogen state were risk factors for SAH (p < 0.05). Results of the multivariable analysis are presented below. Conclusion: Our data confirms previous reports that SAH is a heritable condition. Further work must be done to identify the genetic basis of SAH, so that families can be screened in an efficient and cost effective way. Risk for SAH may be reduced by treating hypertension, smoking cessation, and reduced alcohol intake. The importance of low BMI as a risk factor has been previously reported but is biologically puzzling and requires further study.