Premature Atrial, Ventricular Contractions Linked to Cardiovascular Events

In HealthDay News
by Healthday

Premature atrial contractions linked to increased risk for atrial fibrillation; premature ventricular contractions linked to heart failure

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, April 28, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Premature contractions detected on wearable-format electrocardiograms (ECGs) are associated with an increased risk for atrial fibrillation (AF) and heart failure among individuals without cardiovascular disease, according to a study published in the March issue of the European Heart Journal: Digital Health.

Michele Orini, Ph.D., from the Institute of Cardiovascular Science at University College London, and colleagues examined the association between premature ventricular and atrial contractions (PVCs and PACs) detected on wearable-format ECGs and cardiovascular outcomes among 54,016 U.K. Biobank participants without cardiovascular disease. Associations with AF, heart failure, myocardial infarction (MI), stroke, life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias (LTVAs), and mortality were examined during a period of 11.5 years.

PVCs and PACs had a prevalence of 2.2 and 1.9 percent, respectively. The researchers found the strongest associations between PVCs and heart failure (hazard ratio, 2.09) and between PACs and AF (hazard ratio, 2.52), with risk further increased with shorter prematurity. There were also associations observed for PVCs and PACs with LTVA. In unadjusted models only, associations with MI, stroke, and mortality were significant. In a separate substudy sample used for independent validation, PACs were associated with AF and PVCs with heart failure after adjustment for risk factors (hazard ratios, 1.80 and 2.32, respectively).

“Our results support future studies to investigate the clinical implication of premature heartbeat detection in mobile health population-based risk assessment through ECG wearable devices,” the authors write.

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