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Addiction. 2004 Mar;99(3):313-22.

Drinking pattern and risk of non-fatal myocardial infarction: a population-based case-control study.

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  • 1Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY, USA.



Alcohol consumption has been associated with a reduced risk of heart disease incidence and mortality. However, most studies have focused on an average volume per specific time period and have paid little attention to the pattern of drinking. The aim of this study was to examine the association between various drinking patterns and myocardial infarction (MI).


A population-based case-control study.


Participants were 427 white males with incident MI and 905 healthy white male controls (age 35-69 years) selected randomly from two Western New York counties. During computer-assisted interviews detailed information was collected regarding patterns of alcohol consumption during the 12-24 months prior to interview (controls) or MI (cases).


Compared to life-time abstainers, adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for non-current and current drinkers were 0.66 (0.31-1.39) and 0.50 (0.24-1.02), respectively. Daily drinkers exhibited a significantly lower OR (0.41) compared to life-time abstainers. Participants who drank mainly without food had an OR of 1.49 (0.96-2.31) compared to those who drank mainly with food and 0.62 (0.28-1.37) compared to life-time abstainers. Men who reported drinking only at weekends had a significantly greater MI risk [1.91; (1.21-3.01)] compared to men who drank less than once/week, but not compared to life-time abstainers [0.91 (0.40-2.07)].


Our results indicate that patterns of alcohol use have important cardiovascular health implications.

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