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Circulation. 2012 Jun 19;125(24):2975-84. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.111.081083. Epub 2012 May 22.

Ideal cardiovascular health predicts lower risks of myocardial infarction, stroke, and vascular death across whites, blacks, and hispanics: the northern Manhattan study.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, University of Miami, CRB 13, 1120 NW 14th St, Miami, FL 33136, USA.



Evidence of the relationship of cardiovascular health (CVH), defined by the American Heart Association, and specific cardiovascular outcomes is lacking, particularly among Hispanics. This study sought to evaluate the relationship between the number of ideal CVH metrics and cardiovascular risk, overall and by event subtype, in a multiethnic community-based prospective cohort.


A total of 2981 subjects (mean age, 69±10 years; 54% Caribbean Hispanic, 25% black, 21% white) free of myocardial infarction and stroke at baseline in the Northern Manhattan Study were prospectively followed up (median follow-up, 11 years). The relationship between the number of ideal CVH metrics and the risk of cardiovascular disease, including myocardial infarction, stroke, and vascular death, was investigated. Overall, a strong gradient relationship was observed between the adjusted hazard ratios for cardiovascular disease and the number of ideal CVH metrics: 0.73 (95% confidence interval, 0.60-0.89), 0.61 (95% confidence interval, 0.50-0.76), 0.49 (95% confidence interval, 0.38-0.63), and 0.41 (95% confidence interval, 0.26-0.63) for those having 2, 3, 4, and 5 to 6 ideal CVH metrics, respectively, compared with those having 0 to 1 ideal CVH metrics (P for trend <0.0001). Similar graded relationships were found between the number of ideal CVH metrics and the adjusted incidence rate for each specific outcome and among whites, blacks, and Caribbean Hispanics.


Our findings demonstrated a steep gradient relationship between ideal CVH and individual cardiovascular disease end points, including stroke, that was similar for whites, blacks, and Caribbean Hispanics. This evidence supports the application of the AHA ideal cardiovascular health metrics for cardiovascular disease risk assessment and health promotion for all Americans regardless of race-ethnic background.

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