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BMJ. 2013 Dec 12;347:f6627. doi: 10.1136/bmj.f6627.

The Brady Bunch? New evidence for nominative determinism in patients' health: retrospective, population based cohort study.

Author information

1
Cardiology Department, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin 7, Ireland.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To ascertain whether a name can influence a person's health, by assessing whether people with the surname "Brady" have an increased prevalence of bradycardia.

DESIGN:

Retrospective, population based cohort study.

SETTING:

One university teaching hospital in Dublin, Ireland.

PARTICIPANTS:

People with the surname "Brady" in Dublin, determined through use of an online telephone directory.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Prevalence of participants who had pacemakers inserted for bradycardia between 1 January 2007 and 28 February 2013.

RESULTS:

579 (0.36%) of 161,967 people who were listed on the Dublin telephone listings had the surname "Brady." The proportion of pacemaker recipients was significantly higher among Bradys (n=8, 1.38%) than among non-Bradys (n=991, 0.61%; P=0.03). The unadjusted odds ratio (95% confidence interval) for pacemaker implantation among individuals with the surname Brady compared with individuals with other surnames was 2.27 (1.13 to 4.57).

CONCLUSIONS:

Patients named Brady are at increased risk of needing pacemaker implantation compared with the general population. This finding shows a potential role for nominative determinism in health.

PMID:
24336304
PMCID:
PMC3898418
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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