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Ann Epidemiol. 1990 Oct;1(1):1-12.

Validation of reported myocardial infarction mortality in blacks and whites. A report from the Community Cardiovascular Surveillance Program.

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1
Department of Community Health, School of Medicine, University of California, Davis 95616.

Abstract

It is widely believed that blacks experience a higher mortality due to coronary heart disease (CHD) than do whites. To determine whether this reported difference in mortality between blacks and whites is real, we studied the question in the context of the Community Cardiovascular Surveillance Program (CCSP). Fatal and nonfatal cases of CHD were reviewed in 12 US communities. Standardized criteria were applied to classify these cases as possible CHD, definite CHD, possible myocardial infarction (MI), or definite MI. The annual age-adjusted mortality rate per 100,000 ascribed to definite MI by the CCSP criteria was higher in blacks than in whites: 47 in white men (95% confidence interval, 36 to 58), 18 in white women (95% confidence interval, 8 to 28), 95 in black men (95% confidence interval, 10 to 180), and 41 for black women (95% confidence interval, 0 to 99). The proportion of definite MI to all fatal CHD events was higher in blacks (16%) than in whites (12%). For nonfatal events, however, the rate of definite MI was higher in whites than in blacks: 322 in white men (95% confidence interval, 293 to 351), 225 in black men (95% confidence interval, 160 to 290), 82 in black women (95% confidence interval, 43 to 121), and 103 in white women (95% confidence interval, 88 to 118). The proportion of definite MI to all nonfatal CHD events was lower in blacks (16%) than in whites (30%). Thus, the overall rate for fatal and nonfatal definite MI was lower in blacks (215/100,000) than in whites (244/100,000). These observations suggest that a combination of high case-fatality ratio and misclassification of cause and death may contribute to the reported higher rate of CHD mortality among blacks.

PMID:
1669485
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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