Adults who drink a modest amount of alcohol daily had an increased risk for ischemic stroke, according to data presented at the International Stroke Conference.
“Drinking patterns vary from person to person, even if in cases where they drink similar amounts of alcohol,” Wookjin Yang, MD, of the department of neurology at Seoul National University Hospital in Korea, told Cardiology Today. “We suggested that the risk of ischemic stroke may vary according to different drinking patterns.”
Researchers analyzed data from 286,256 participants (mean age, 45 years; 52% men) from the National Health Insurance Service National Sample Cohort.
Participants were categorized by drinking frequency and quantity: abstainer (n = 152,584), social drinker (n = 99,232), daily modest drinker (n = 6,281), episodic heavy drinker (n = 25,667) and daily heavy drinker (n = 2,492). Follow-up was conducted for a median of 9 years.
Participants who drank socially had a protective effect for ischemic stroke (HR = 0.88; 95% CI, 0.81-0.96). Drinking patterns influenced the results in participants who drank more. Modest drinking every day increased the risk for ischemic stroke (HR = 1.16; 95% CI, 1.01-1.33), although this was not seen in episodic heavy drinking (HR = 0.9; 95% CI, 0.76-1.07), the researchers reported.
“The differences in race, drinking habits or type of alcoholic beverage among countries were not considered in this study,” Yang said in an interview. “However, it would be worth performing research for additional validation on this topic in other ethnicities and databases using the results of this study as basic data.” – by Darlene Dobkowski
Yang W, et al. Abstract 12. Presented at: International Stroke Conference; Feb. 6-8, 2019; Honolulu.
Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.