MI survivors who live within 100 m of a major US roadway appear to be at heightened risk for death from all causes compared with survivors who live farther away, according to new research published in Circulation.
Results of the Determinants of Myocardial Infarction Onset Study of 3,547 MI survivors (mean age, 62 years) revealed:
- Survivors who live less than 100 m from a major roadway have a 27% increased risk for dying over 10 years vs. those living at least 1,000 m away.
- Survivors who live 100 m to 199 m from a roadway have a 19% increased risk for death vs. those who live farther away.
- Survivors who live 200 m to 999 m from the roadway have a 13% increased risk for death vs. those who live farther away.
The roadways include major interstate and state roads throughout the United States.
“We think there is exposure to a combination of air pollution near those roadways and other exposure, such as excessive noise or stress from living close to the roadway, that may contribute to the study findings,” Murray A. Mittleman, MD, DrPH, director of the Cardiovascular Research Unit at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, said in a press release issued by the American Heart Association.
During the 10-year study, 1,071 deaths occurred, 63% of which were related to CV causes. Cancer was the cause for 12% of deaths and respiratory disease for 4% of deaths.
The researchers also examined and accounted for numerous factors in the analysis, including clinical, personal and neighborhood-level characteristics such as education and income.
“People with lower levels of education and income are more likely to live in communities closer to a major roadway, so they are bearing a larger burden of the risk associated with exposure than people with more resources,” Mittleman said in the release.
Disclosure: Dr. Mittleman and the researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.