Prospective Study of Major and Minor ST-T Abnormalities and Risk of Stroke Among Japanese
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Background and Purpose— The association between minor ST-T abnormalities and stroke incidence has not been well elucidated. We sought to examine the relationship between nonspecific minor or major ST-T abnormalities and the incidence of stroke among Japanese men and women.
Methods— A 15.4-year prospective study was conducted with 10 741 men and women aged 40 to 69 years in 4 Japanese communities. Electrocardiograms were taken at baseline and were read according to the Minnesota Code. The incidence of stroke was ascertained using systematic surveillance.
Results— During the 15.4-year follow-up, 602 strokes (339 ischemic strokes, 129 intracerebral hemorrhages, 80 subarachnoid hemorrhages, and 54 unclassified strokes) occurred. Both men and women with major ST-T abnormalities had approximately 3-fold higher age-adjusted relative risk and 2-fold higher multivariate-adjusted relative risk of total stroke than did those without such abnormalities. Men with minor ST-T abnormalities had a 2.3-fold higher age-adjusted relative risk of total stroke, both ischemic and hemorrhagic, than did those without such abnormalities. After we adjusted further for hypertension category, the relative risk for minor ST-T abnormalities was reduced substantially but remained statistically significant: 1.8 (95% CI, 1.3 to 2.4) for total stroke, 1.9 (95%CI, 1.3 to 2.8) for ischemic stroke, and 1.7 (95% CI, 1.0 to 3.0) for hemorrhagic stroke. For women, however, there was no relation between minor ST-T abnormalities and stroke incidence.
Conclusions— Minor ST-T abnormalities have predictive value for the risk of total stroke, both ischemic and hemorrhagic, among middle-aged Japanese men, as do major ST-T abnormalities for both sexes.
- Received May 26, 2003.
- Revision received July 28, 2003.
- Accepted August 27, 2003.